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How to Kill Clover Mites

By Joshua Duvauchelle ; Updated September 21, 2017

In the spring, clover mites (Bryobia praetiosa) emerge from their hiding places on outdoor plants, exploding in population size and often invading homes come fall. The little insects may only measure 1/16th-inch in length, but in great numbers they can overwhelm the plants upon which they feed, and pose a significant eyesore when indoors. Take steps to control and eradicate the mites to restore the health and beauty of your garden and home.

Stop clover mites from entering your house or outdoor garden buildings. Use a standard caulking gun. Seal off gaps around pipes and fill cracks around door jams or windows.

Keep your lawn properly mowed, as clover mites tend to hide in grass and an ill-maintained lawn can serve as a prime breeding spot.

Kill clover mites on your plants. Spray the plants with a standard garden insecticide intended for use on your specific plant types. For example, use a vegetable insecticide on plants intended for consumption. Mist onto the plants according to the insecticide's guidelines, as toxicity varies by product.

Eradicate clover mites on the outside of your garden structures and house. Apply an even coat of malathion--a standard insecticide that's effective against mites and widely available at most nurseries and hardware stores--on all exterior walls and in a 15-foot swath on the ground around your house. If mites persist, repeat treatment 14 days later.

Kill clover mites that are inside your house or garden structure. Use a vacuum to siphon them away. Discard the vacuum bag in a sealed plastic bag. For heavy interior infestations, spray entry points like doors and windows with an interior insecticide formulated with propoxur in a 0.5 percent to 1 percent concentration.

 

Things You Will Need

  • Caulking gun
  • Garden insecticide
  • Malathion insecticide
  • Vacuum
  • Propoxur insecticide

Warning

  • Be careful when treating interior clover mite infestations. Smashing or stepping on the bugs will leave red stains on fabrics and carpet.

About the Author

 

Joshua Duvauchelle is a certified personal trainer and health journalist, relationships expert and gardening specialist. His articles and advice have appeared in dozens of magazines, including exercise workouts in Shape, relationship guides for Alive and lifestyle tips for Lifehacker. In his spare time, he enjoys yoga and urban patio gardening.