Whiteflies are a common plant pest, and they can be extremely difficult to get rid of. They like to lay eggs on plant leaves, and your best defense against them is to thoroughly check your plants for whiteflies before you purchase them, then keep a vigilant watch for any signs of infestation. However, if you are already suffering from a plague of whiteflies, you can take certain measures to get rid of the adults and their eggs. Bleach may be effective for killing whitefly eggs, but since it can also kill your plants, take certain precautions when using it.
Check all of your plants for whitefly eggs. These are cone-shaped and may be dark gray, orange or another color, depending on the species of whitefly. Adult whiteflies lay their eggs in a circular pattern on the undersides of leaves.
Smash, pick off the whitefly eggs you find, and then drop them in a bucket filled with bleach. You can also purchase a hand-held vacuum to remove the eggs, larvae and insects from the leaves, and then empty the vacuum’s contents into the bucket of bleach to ensure they do not survive.
Pour water in a second bucket, and dip a cloth or sponge in the water. Wipe off every infested leaf, paying particular attention to the undersides. Dip and rinse the sponge or cloth in the water after wiping off a few leaves, and repeat.
Dump the contents of the water bucket into the bucket of bleach when the water gets low or becomes too saturated with whiteflies and their eggs. This will guarantee the eggs and insects get killed. Refill the water bucket, and repeat this until you wipe off all the leaves.
Put on rubber gloves, and sanitize your sponge and buckets by washing them in a mixture of bleach and water when you are finished to ensure that no remaining whitefly eggs or adults remain. Wipe down the sides of your plant pots and any tables or stands they sit on with bleach, as well.
Repeat these steps every two to three days until the whitefly infestation is gone. You may have to do this for several weeks since these insects are resilient and the surviving adults can continue to lay eggs for one to two months.