How to Rid Raspberry Plants of Mites

Overview

Raspberry plants produce the beautiful dark, pinkish-red berries that you enjoy in many ways, including on ice cream, in jams or on their own. Although the raspberry is a hardy plant, it is still susceptible to mites like red spider mites. These insects reside underneath the berry leaves, causing discolored areas and cupping of the foliage. In worst-case scenarios, they slow the plant's growth, which results in unhealthy fruit. Using a combination of methods, rid your raspberry plants of mites so that you can enjoy your berries for years to come.

Step 1

Spray the undersides of your raspberry plant leaves with a forceful spray of water to dislodge any mites that you find. Regular applications of water help control mite populations before they get out of control.

Step 2

Spray a lime-sulfur dormant solution on your berry plant in the spring before the buds are expected. This solution cleanses your plant before the fruit comes and helps control mites.

Step 3

Cut the appendages that produce the raspberries (canes) to the ground when they are done providing fruit. Canes die after they finish bearing raspberries and dead vegetation attracts mites.

Step 4

Remove any weeds as soon as they appear. Not only do they compete for nutrients, but weeds also harbor pests that can easily infect your raspberry plant.

Step 5

Encourage helpful insects like ladybugs so that they can get rid of the mites for you. Many garden centers and hardware stores sell these beneficial bugs.

Step 6

Apply an organic insecticidal soap to the tops and undersides of the raspberry leaves when you spot the mites. The soap kills the mites, but does not damage your plant in the process.

Things You'll Need

  • Water
  • Lime-sulfur dormant solution
  • Pruning shears
  • Beneficial insects
  • Organic insecticidal soap

References

  • North Dakota State University: Refreshing Raspberries for Home Grown Goodness
  • University of California: Spider Mites

Who Can Help

  • University of Vermont Extension: Caring for Raspberries
Keywords: rid raspberry plants of mites, get rid of spider mites, care for a raspberry plant

About this Author

Jenny Glass has been writing professionally since 2001 and is a glass artist with a Web design and technical writing background. In addition to writing for Demand Studios, she has been a contributor to "Glass Line Magazine" and runs her own art glass business.