Asked on Dec 17, 2011

My Schefflera has ,what I think are aphids, on it.

Lyn ThereseAnna KWoodbridge Environmental


I put it outside this past weekend and washed it with a hose, I noticed today there are more, or some that I didnt get off. What can I do to get rid of them and prevent them from spreading to other plants? I did fine this summer outside, the problem developed about a month after I brought it inside.
10 answers
  • I believe a mixture of dish soap and water sprayed on the leaves will remove the aphids. Something I have heard a lot about on HomeTalk! Simply spraying them with water will not do the trick.

  • 3po3
    on Dec 18, 2011

    Neem oil might also work, but Woodbridge's option is cheaper and simpler. Just a little soap in the water should do the trick.

  • Douglas Hunt
    on Dec 18, 2011

    I'm in favor of using the least harmful means necessary. I would do exactly what you are doing, start with water, then work up to a diluted mixture of dish soap and water and then the neem if necessary. Good luck!

  • Karen M
    on Dec 18, 2011

    i've had great success ridding my plants of aphids by using a spray called "end all" insect killer by the Safer Brand company. the ingredient listing is a combo of pyrethrin, neem oil, and potassium salts, all of which are organic.

  • Walter Reeves
    on Dec 18, 2011

    Caution: remember that "dish soap" is most likely "dish detergent"....and that soaps and detergents are not the same. Detergents are MUCH more likely to harm plants because of their superior ability to dissolve oil/wax on leaf surfaces. I only recommend using commercial insecticidal soaps...they have been tested to not harm plants.

  • Carole
    on Dec 18, 2011

    Thanks to all for the advice. I have the plant back inside and will look at it very carefully in a few days, then if I see more aphids I will have to make a decision as what to try next.

  • Carole
    on Dec 18, 2011

    Where would I find the end all, or the neem oil?

  • I would go to a good nursery in your area. You may find this at big box store types, but a good garden center would be your best bet. In fact by going to your local garden center they may have even more information about your issue and would be able to suggest even something else that no one here even suggested. After all they know your area better then any of us and should be more familiar with the issues of your local climate.

  • Anna K
    on Dec 19, 2011

    easiest, best and most successful for me is to release a few ladybugs on the plant and let them go to work... if you google it you will likely find a local supplier, but they can also be ordered online-very cheap.

    • DianaB
      on Oct 25, 2015

      @Anna K You cannot have the ladybugs inside the house and expect them to clean the aphids off an indoor plant. You can order them for release outside in your garden and hope they stick around. They will not survive indoors.

  • Lyn Therese
    on Jan 5, 2016

    Spray your plant with well diluted dish detergent and water, rinse and put a large plastic bay over plant and seal bag. Bring inside if it is an indoor plant. Leave alone for couple of weeks. The aphids should die from lack of air and they won't be able to infect your other plants. When it looks like they are gone, spray plant again. There is no need to water the plant during the 2 weeks. With spraying the plant, it is watered enough to get through the 2 wks.

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