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As with all pests and diseases, it’s much easier to prevent the problem from occurring instead of controlling an outbreak. Inspect your plants carefully and frequently, quarantine new plants, and consider using a preventative foliar spray on a regular basis.
Russet mites are very small and infestations require a microscope to see. Generally you’ll start to see plant damage before you spot the mites themselves. Leaf edges will start to curl up and you’ll see discoloration and “burning” on the leaves. The mites may look like a brown/yellow powder on the infected parts of the plant. Under a microscope, they’ll look like a small worm with 4 legs on the front. If possible, drop the temperature in your garden while you are working on eradicating russet mites to slow their rate of reproduction.
“No Spider Mites” is an organic spray that is effective at controlling Russet mites. We’ve also seen good success with Bonide Eight Insect Control. Make sure to follow the manufacturer’s instructions – if you do not use enough product or use it too infrequently, you can risk your mite population to become resistant to your treatment. If this happens, switch to a different product. If you have an ongoing battle with Russet mites, keep rotating your products. Always test on a small section of your garden and observe the results for a day or two before treating your entire garden.