What Is Causing Tiny White Spots On The Leaves Of My Burford Holly?

Filed Under: Diseases and Fungus, Insects · Keywords: Tiny, White, Spots, Burfordi, Holly, Leaves, Insects, Disease · 3365 Views
My Burford Holly shrub has tiny white spots on all it's leaves. What is it and what can I do about it.

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Answer #2 · Gardenality.com's Answer · It's hard to say without seeing a picture of the leaves, but my guess is that your holly has the scale. As John mentioned, Neem oil or Malathion insectidal sprays are effective for controlling scale and many other insects.)

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Answer #1 · Maple Tree's Answer · Hi Eileen-Spotting of the holly leaves can be caused by several things such as fungal diseases or insects. Normally potting from fungal disease caused by too wet a soil and or wet humid conditions is brown or black in color with possibly a yellowish halo around the spotting. Spotting may be irregular in size and shape also. The white spotting of the leaves is most likely an insect pest such as spider mites or scale. Spider mites are usually found on the underside of the leaves causing most of the spotting on the underside of the leaves. Spider mites are extremely small and hard to see. They will leave a white spotting which is their cast skins and eggs. There may also be some white spider like webbing on the leaves also. To check for spider mites hold a white sheet of paper under the leaves and shake the stem. If you see small brown or reddish specks on the paper these are the very small spider mites. Scale insects can also look like white, tan, brown, or yellowish spots. They may look like white waxy looking bumps on the leaves. The white coating is used as protection for the scale insect. Both insects feed by puncturing the leaf and sucking the sap from the leaves. In time the leaves may start to yellow then brown and possibly drop. Several beneficial insects such as the parasitic wasps and laddy bugs help to control spider mites and scale. When beneficial insects are not around in great enough numbers horticultural oils or Neem oil sprayed over the entire holly plant will help to control the mites and scale without harming the beneficial insects. Neem oil is a product that can easily be found in your local nursery or garden centers. If the problem is scale and the infestation is severe it is best to prune away the heavily infested stems and treat with the neem oil or malathion. Several applications may be needed for total control. Always read and apply these products as per the product labels.

I uploaded a few pictures of the spider mites and scale insect on leaves for you to see. Let me know if these look anything like what you are seeing on your plants.

Please ask if you have any other questions.


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Answer #3 · Eileen Coyle's Answer · John,
I'm new to gardenality and not sure how things work, yet. I commented about the answer, you gave me, to my question about my Burford Holly, but I don't know if it went through.
The spots on my holly are like the ones in your photo, on the right.
I have purchased the Neem Oil, and will spray the shrub within the next few days.
Thank you so much for your very prompt, and detailed, reply to my question.

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Maple Tree

Maple Tree · Gardenality Genius · Zone 10A · 30° to 35° F
You're very welcome Eileen. Not sure why your comment didn't show up. Possibly you forgot to click on the green comment box after writing the comment. If this ever happens again let me know and we will send in a bug report to get it fixed. Glad we were able to find the answer to your question. At times the scale may be hard to control when the scale crawlers are not moving and are protected with the white coating you are seeing. I would definitely spray several times also in the spring when the scale are moving and before they settle In one place to feed and lay eggs. I noted a link to a cooperative extension article regarding scale that may help with controlling them and knowing the best times to apply an insecticide. It also notes how to know or find when the crawlers are moving. You can copy and paste this link into your browser to see the article. http://urbanrancher.tamu.edu/retiredsite/bugs/b6097.pdf Please let me know if you have any other questions. John

7 years ago ·
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Gardenality.com · Gardenality Genius · Zone 8A · 10° to 15° F
The Neem oil should work. As John said, it may take a couple or few sprayings to eliminate them all. Keep us posted as to how effective the Neem oil is on the scale.

7 years ago ·
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