What has infested my azaleas

by Betty
they all seem to have this mottled green leaf and on the back is spores and maybe what i thought was some grey little spider like critter on the back. I planted these last October. so proud of the fact they are still alive with our drought here in GA
  16 answers
  • Janet Pizaro Janet Pizaro on Oct 15, 2016
    It appears to be a bad infestation of spider mite.
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    • Janet Pizaro Janet Pizaro on Oct 15, 2016
      Look for a systemic for azaleas at Home Depot.Here in NewYork the chemicals are space this time of year,however by you it should be fine.If you cannot locate one your best bet will be applying a horticultural oil to neem oil heavily over and above the leaves as well as the surrounding soil.
  • Clare Clare on Oct 15, 2016
    The yellowed top of the leaf looks like spider mite damage, but the black spots on the back are fecal spots so it's the azalea lace bug which causes similar damage on the top of the leaf. There should be azalea lace bug predators around unless the azalea is in the sun; the predators don't like to hunt in the sun. Also, if pesticides are commonly used, there won't be many predators around.
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    • Betty Betty on Oct 25, 2016
      Actually they start getting sun around 1 till about 5
  • Sandra Sandra on Oct 16, 2016
    Treat with systemic control: Bonide available on Amazon.
  • Patricia Patricia on Oct 16, 2016
    The pale mottling looks just like the thrip damage to my limonium leaves. But don't listen to the online advice to burn the affected plants/remove the soil--I've simply taken the time to spray both tops and bottoms of leaves once every couple of weeks and saved most of my thrip-infested plants. But put affected leaves into the trash, never into compost or into a green waste can for municipal pick-up.
  • Pmp12584640 Pmp12584640 on Oct 16, 2016
    THIS FROM A BUG/SOMETHING "FLY" OR 'fly something'.. Spray with a hardware product.. mine came back after a few weeks, the gray dull green color went away, new life in leaves.. Nursery guy told me, it would come back in SPRING, but it was better in no time,,, now hope Spring of 2017 it does well still..
  • Sophia,M.,McConnery Sophia,M.,McConnery on Oct 16, 2016
    Those are spider mites.If you do not treat them they will get on everything.I do not know of a natural way except tea tree oil for this.My parents always used lye to get rid of them!
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    • Sophia,M.,McConnery Sophia,M.,McConnery on Oct 16, 2016
      It is an agricultural product.You can buy it in bulk at hardware stores.When we moved to the house in 1972 there was a cherry tree in the middle of the backyard.It had various types of spiders infesting it.The tree looked a pale white after the lye application but there was never another spider of any kind on it.
  • Sidney Sidney on Oct 16, 2016
    Send pic to Southern Living. They have been very helpful to me.
  • Diane Kallal Diane Kallal on Oct 16, 2016
    It looks like powdery mildew. My azaleas get it as they get too dry and are supseptible to it.
  • Lou Devillon Lou Devillon on Oct 17, 2016
    You can use an organic insecticide such as pyrethrin, mixed with canola oil. . You can find it already mixed, or make your own. Look online for organic recipes. Spider mites thrive in dry weather. You will probably have to spray twice, about a week apart. Make sure you spray under the leaves, and the branches. check your mulch for teeny webs. If infested, replace it with fresh material.
  • Debbie Debbie on Oct 17, 2016
    Lace bugs. usually show up around April here in Tulsa. They hide on the underside of the leaves. Hence the black spots. Don't think that's spider mites
  • Gayle Buyny Gayle Buyny on Oct 17, 2016
    We call them spider mites. Live in Tennessee. They were on my azaleas. After the plants became established there were no more problems. It took a couple of years from new plants to where they could fight off the spiders on their own. Had to spray for the spiders.
  • Debby Rodden Debby Rodden on Oct 18, 2016
    Azalea Lace Bug. You rarely see them, but they leave the white 'mottled look' on the leaves wit that residue on the underside. Systemic treatments work best getting into the plants entire system-Malathion or Orthene work well to combat them. You could go organic-Safer's Soap, etc. , but they're tough to get under control so...
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    • Cam13319569 Cam13319569 on Oct 27, 2016
      what product did they recommend?
  • Liz Liz on Oct 22, 2016
    Every county in every state in the U.S. has a Cooperative Extension Office. They have horticulturists or agricultural specialists on staff. They're sponsored by a state university and most have graduate degrees. Call and then bring a few leaves by for them to see. They'll correctly identify the problem and make the best recommendation for treating it.
  • Gainorhillegass Gainorhillegass on Oct 24, 2016
    Spider mites. Had them on my PA azaleas. The previous treatment suggestions are all good.
  • Amber smith Amber smith on Oct 27, 2016
    I've got em too....it is Lace wing bugs. I'm going to try neem oil spray (upper and lower side of leaves) at beginning of spring to see if that gets rid of them. I'm in western Pennsylvania .
  • Tammy Netherton Tammy Netherton on Oct 20, 2019

    So, are they spider mites or lace bugs? I have 3 big beautiful azalea bushes and they look the same. The leaves haven't turned yellow and fallen off but look like they are being chewed on. Little holes all over them.

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    • Tammy Netherton Tammy Netherton on Nov 16, 2019

      Thank you so much Sharon