White fly on parsley

White fly on parsley

Question: whitefly on parsley

On my balcony in Rome every year I sow parsley in pots that are born and grow well, but then small white spots form that lead to their death. I add that when these spots appear and I touch the leaves to see tiny gnats fly up. What to do? Thanks, Enzo


Answer: whitefly on parsley

Hello Enzo, welcome to the questions and answers section of our website. From the description he gave us about the insects that arrive punctually on his parsley every year, we can say that most likely they are whiteflies better known with the generic name of whitefly.

The whitefly is a parasite that easily spreads in greenhouses and ornamental plants and in all places where the climate is hot and humid. It can usually be found on the lower page of the leaf, where the whiteflies suck the sap through a special apparatus, producing as a waste the honeydew which over time favors the development of smokiness on the underlying leaves.

Recognizing the whitefly is easy as plants affected by this parasite, as soon as they are touched, they release many white flies in flight. A plant affected by whiteflies can undergo serious problems both for the sap that is stolen from the plant, and for the development of fungi and fumaggini on the leaves which greatly reduce the plant's ability to photosynthesize.

What to do?

The whitefly can be fought through chemical control systems or through biological control systems. Considering that the plant in question is parsley and therefore it is a plant that is used for cooking, we strongly recommend that you proceed with a type of biological struggle.

The most effective and safe chemical fight is carried out using treatments based on pyrethrum or imidacloprid. The biological fight, on the other hand, can be carried out with the help of the chalcidoid hymenoptera Encarsia formosa or with another natural antagonist, the Encarsia tricolor, which by attacking whiteflies limit its spread.

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