How to Get Rid of Aphids on House Plants

Overview

Aphids are small insects, typically a black, red or green color, that are especially attracted to houseplants. You may see these in your house during hot summer days feeding on your plants. With a closer look, you can see that aphids are pear-shaped with long legs and that they can quickly eat portions of leaves. You will find them attacking newly grown houseplants, specifically, on the tips of plant leaves and flower buds, where they steal the juices of the flower. Other aphids will feed on plant roots.

Step 1

Wipe off all the leaves of your houseplant using a slightly moistened cloth. This will remove any aphids and eggs that may not be visible. Also, try spraying the plant with a water bottle and then wipe off the leaves if you have a rather large infestation.

Step 2

Soak a sponge in warm, soapy water and clean the leaves. After the leaves are soapy and wet, you can dry them with a clean cloth. Make sure that the dish soap you use is not heavily fragrant.

Step 3

Soak a cotton swab in rubbing alcohol and rub it all over the areas of your houseplant where the aphids are. Continue adding the rubbing alcohol every two or three days for at least two weeks. You should see the infestation die out fairly quickly. However, if you still see signs of aphids in your houseplants, go to Step 4.

Step 4

Prune 1/4 inch of leaves, and care for your plant everyday to make sure the aphid problem does not continue. Make sure to remove any diseased or dead leaves and branches immediately. Also, never over-water your plant so that you don't attract more aphids.

Step 5

Cover your soil with plastic wrap or newspaper. Grab the plant by the base and spray the plant down with soapy water again. Wait for 10 minutes, and then rinse and dry the plant with a cloth.

Things You'll Need

  • Cloth
  • Water bottle

References

  • Aphids: How to Identify and Get Rid of These House Plant Pests
  • How to Get Rid of Aphids
Keywords: repel aphids, houseplant insects, aphid infestation

About this Author

Greg Lindberg is a graduate of Purdue University with a Bachelor of Liberal Arts degree in creative writing. His professional writing experience includes three years of technical writing for an agriculture IT department and a major pharmaceutical company, as well as four years as staff writer for a music and film webzine.