Scabbard pest and false shield: fight, types and preparations

Plant pests Published: 23 January 2012 Reprinted: Last changes:

General information

The harm (and its external manifestations) caused by scabies is very similar, regardless of the type of this pest. Shield sticks to the leaf, and a yellow speck begins to appear at this place, which begins to gradually increase - the scabbard drinks the juice of the plant. Over time, the leaf turns yellow completely, curls and falls off. The growth of the plant slows down, the leaves fall off, after which the plant begins to dry out and die. The scale insect affects not only the leaves, but also the fruits of citrus plants.

A common characteristic feature of scale insects is the presence of protective shields. False shields stand out by the absence of a shield, but they do the same harm. They feed on scale insects, suck juice from plant leaves, therefore they are sucking pests. The main danger is that the larvae settle throughout the plant literally a few hours after they emerge from the eggs, and immediately start eating.

Representatives of different species differ only in the color of the shield and the size of the individual itself. The scutellum of an adult female is dark or red-brown in color, has the shape of a circle and reaches two millimeters in diameter. Males are smaller, and the scutellum is slightly elongated.

Types of scale insects

Euonymus scale

As the name implies, it damages euonymus. The pest infects leaves, stems and other parts. The scutellum of females is dark brown, shaped like a pear, up to two millimeters in diameter. In males, the scutellum is white, because of this, the plant becomes, as it were, white if the plant is very strongly affected.

Cactus scale

It affects cacti, populating its entire area and sucking out the juice. With severe damage, the cactus appears to be grayish in color. The scutellum of an adult female reaches 2.5 millimeters in diameter, is round and white.

Olive false shield

Most often, camellia is affected by oleander, laurel and citrus plants. The adult female grows up to 3.5 millimeters in length, the body is dark brown with "H" -shaped growths on the back. They are also dangerous because a fungus settles on the secretions of the false shield.

Soft false shield

Harmful to a large number of indoor plants. An individual of an adult female grows up to 4 millimeters in length, the body is broadly oval, slightly convex.

Palm scale

It affects mainly palms, building colonies on both sides of the leaf. The white-gray scutellum of an adult female reaches 2.2 millimeters in diameter.

Ivy scale

Most often it affects plants from subtropical zones: ivy, dracaena, oleander, asparagus, yucca, etc. Ivy scale insects affect all parts of the plant - especially in the nodes of the shoots. The female's shield is up to two and a half millimeters in diameter, yellow, slightly convex or flat.

Hemispherical false shield

This pest affects a large number of plants - petioles, leaves and young shoots. In length, the female of the hemispherical false shield grows up to 4 millimeters, but unlike its relative, the shield, she does not have a shield.

Fighting scabbards

When the first signs of plant infection appear, it must be isolated from others, and an inspection of nearby plants should be carried out. Spraying with insecticides will not give a positive effect, because the shield protects the pest from drugs - it is necessary to remove the pests mechanically. Depending on the tenderness of the leaves of the plant, a cotton swab, cloth or brush should be moistened in Aktar, Aktellika or Karbofos and walk over the entire plant, removing pests.

means of combating the scabbard - detailed information

Processing must be carried out very carefully, because even one unnoticed scale insect can multiply on the whole plant in a few days. If the plant has a lot of small leaves, then the plant must either be destroyed, or very, very meticulously and thoroughly wiped with a cloth with an insecticide. If patience is not enough, it is better to destroy the plant in order to avoid contamination of neighboring plants.

Scabbard preparations

  • Aktara
  • Actellic
  • Bankcol
  • Karbofos


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Houseplant pests with photos and names

All plants, wherever they are grown, are exposed to the invasion of various pests. In addition, housewives, which housewives love to grow so much, are susceptible to various diseases and the harmful actions of various insects. Various reasons contribute to this. Often, the housewives themselves are to blame for this, since they do not create the proper conditions for growth and development for the plants. Some of them simply forget to water the plants, and some of them water them too much. It should be noted that there are quite dangerous pests that can reduce human labor to zero.

As a result of the appearance of pests, indoor plants lag behind in development and lose their attractiveness, and often even die. Therefore, the main task of indoor plant lovers is the timely detection of parasites and the subsequent fight against them. This article describes the main pests of indoor plants, their appearance, and how to deal with them.

Aphids on lemon

Accumulation of aphids on a lemon branch. Photo: Natural Living Ideas

Aphids - small, sedentary, sucking pests of lemons, the size of Aphids can have different colors - from yellow to black, but most often aphids are green.

Aphids suck sap from plants, preferring young leaves, flowers and buds. Aphids stick around the leaves in whole colonies, feed and multiply quickly. Aphids are often raised and milked by ants - if you notice aphids, pay attention to the presence of ants.

Aphids are a nasty pest that weakens plants and transfers viral diseases from one plant to another. For example, aphids often enter your home with a bouquet of store-bought roses or chrysanthemums, which means they can transfer greenhouse viruses to your plants. Therefore, as a preventive measure, it is not recommended to put vases with purchased flowers in rooms where lemons grow.

Aphids graze on the underside of leaves, gathering in colonies. Lemons leaves curl or bend, discolor and become thin. When eating, the aphid secretes a sweet liquid - "honeydew" - so the leaves become sticky and sticky. By the way, the ants collect this liquid and carry it to the anthill. Aphid-infested lemons stun and look bad.

How to deal with aphids on lemon. Having identified aphids, thoroughly wash the leaves, branches and the stem of the lemon with soapy water, dissolving 30 grams of laundry soap in 1 liter of water.

It is necessary to wash the leaves on both sides. It is advisable to cover the soil with a film, and tie the trunk with a bandage so that the soapy liquid does not get inside the pot.

After washing the plant with soap, proceed with the treatment with chemicals or folk remedies to combat aphids, for example:

  1. Infusion of tobacco. Pour tobacco or makhorka (50 grams) with 1 liter. water and leave for one day, and then boil the infusion for 2 hours. Dilute the resulting tobacco infusion with one liter of water. The infusion is applied to the leaves and stems of the plant, evenly wetting the surface.
  2. Infusion of onion peels. Pour onion husks (30 grams) with 1 liter of water, leave for 5 days, and then strain. Apply the onion infusion, evenly watering the leaves and stems.
  3. Infusion of garlic peels. Pour the garlic husk (40 grams) with 3 liters of water and let it brew for a day, and then process the leaves and stems of the lemon.
  4. Mustard infusion. Pour dry mustard powder (70 grams) with 1 liter of boiling water and stir thoroughly to break up the lumps. Insist the resulting gruel for 3 days, tightly closing the lid. Before spraying lemon, dilute the suspension in water, in a 1: 3 ratio (one part mustard infusion, three parts water).
  5. Dandelion infusion. Pour the roots (30 grams) or leaves (50 grams) of dandelion with 1 liter of warm water (+50 ° C) and leave for 4 hours, then strain and thoroughly spray the lemon tree.
  6. Infusion of potato tops. Pour green or dried tops (150 grams and 75 grams, respectively) of potatoes with 1 liter of hot water and let it brew for 3 hours and strain. The infusion of potato tops is not stored, but used on the day of preparation.
  7. Infusion of tomato tops. Pour a pound of green tomato tops with one liter of water and boil for 30 minutes over low heat, strain and dilute with water in a 1: 3 ratio. Sprinkle the lemons thoroughly.

Attention: Infusions of onion and garlic peels, mustard and dandelion can be used when lemons are infested with spider mites.

Varieties of scale insects

Like most other insects, scale insects in the world fauna are represented by a great variety. Mulberry (white plum), purple, pseudo-Californian, apple comma, tropical polyphagous - these are just a few varieties of these hemiptera. There are more than 2400 of them in total. The table provides general information about some of them:

Types of scale insects Body length, mm Features of the
Mulberry Pseudaulacaspis pentagona 2 This is one of the most common types of parasite. The mulberry scale has a wide habitat. It is the most dangerous enemy of many fruit, ornamental and forest crops. On the territory of our country, the mulberry shield was added to the list of quarantine objects.
Willow Chionaspis salicis L. 11 Distributed in the European territory of Russia, in Western Europe. The willow scabbard affects not only the willow. The favorite food of the willow scale insect is aspen, alder, poplar and other deciduous trees.
California Quadraspidiotus perniciosus 2 This member of the family is a polyphage and is found everywhere, damaging over 200 plant species.

Houseplant pests and control measures

The best way to control pests is to prevent them from spreading. Inspect the plant carefully when purchasing. At home, wash it under a warm shower and set it apart from other plants for a month to observe. It is not recommended to bathe plants together in one container, put them on one pallet, change pallets in places, place plants too closely. All this increases the likelihood of the spread of pests. The transplant soil must be sterilized. Adherence to growing conditions and care is essential to increase plant resistance.

When using chemical plant protection products, it is necessary to strictly follow the instructions for use, which are necessarily placed on the packaging of drugs, as well as observe precautions when working with them. From the number of drugs, you should choose the safest, having a lower hazard class (III or IV). Spray treatments should be carried out on the balcony or in the open air.

It is not always possible to identify the pest at the very beginning, so you need to know them and be able to deal with them.

Shield and false shield - sucking insects-parasites of the Hemiptera family, superfamily worms, feeding on cell sap. On shoots, leaves, petioles and trunks, they look like tubercles or brown wax droplets measuring 2-5 mm. They can be easily removed with a fingernail; when pressed, a yellowish thick liquid is released from them. Leaf tissues under the scabbard are often discolored. A sticky bloom of insect secretions often appears on the leaves of the affected plant, as well as nearby plants. From above, the pests are covered with waxy shields that protect them from the effects of contact insecticides, therefore, systemic preparations of intestinal action are the most effective.

Measures to combat the scale insect, false shield, mealybug. Alcohol treatment, treatment with a water-oil emulsion, replacement of the top layer of the soil, the main treatment with Aktara insecticide (spray with a solution of 4 g / 5 l and shed the soil with a solution of 1 g / 10 l, 4 times, interval 7-10 days) and auxiliary contiguous treatments (after 1-2 days) with Akarin, Agravertin, Iskra-bio, Karate, Inta-vir, Fitoverm (spraying with 1% solution, 4 times with an interval of 7-10 days).

Thrips - sucking insect, lays eggs in leaf tissue. Most often affects plants in dry air. It looks like a thin, long, 1-2 mm, often striped (sometimes black or light) front sight. Often the parasite itself is difficult to detect, only traces of damage are visible. The leaf is covered with strokes-passages of larvae, they often merge into rather extensive spots, on the upper side of the leaf the spots acquire a silvery sheen. The larval stage of development occurs in the thickness of the leaf and is therefore protected from the action of contact insecticides. In the fight against thrips, the most effective are preparations of systemic intestinal action with maintenance treatment with contact insecticides.

Whitefly - a sucking parasitic insect from the Hemiptera family. On the affected plant, white small flies can be seen, white oval immobile larvae or empty molted skins on the underside of the leaf.

The thermal method can be proposed as an additional method. At temperatures above + 40 ... + 45 ° C, insects experience thermal shock. It is necessary to heat an enclosed space with whitefly infested insects to this temperature, which is easy to do on a glazed and sealed balcony on a sunny day or in a greenhouse.

Aphid - a sucking insect from the order of green, brown, black hemiptera, 2 mm. Forms colonies mainly at the tops of the shoots. There are colonies of wingless and winged individuals. When the plant is located outdoors (on the ground) in the summer, ants are often indicators of damage, which feed on the sweet secretion of aphids; droplets of sticky honeydew are also observed on the leaves.

Aphid control measures. One- or two-time treatment with Aktara (spraying at a concentration of 4 g / 5 l and watering at a concentration of 1 g / 10 l), Akarin, Agravertin or Iskra-bio (spraying with 5-8 ml / l), or another insecticide according to the instructions. During processing, insects may not die immediately, but after a few hours. All plants in the house should be treated as the aphids move easily.

Weevil control measures. Manual assembly of adult insects, spraying with Aktara (4 g / 5 l), spilling of soil with Aktara (1 g / 10 l), 4-fold processing every 7-10 days.

Alcohol processing necessary for the mechanical destruction of some pests, such as scale insects, false scales, mealybugs. This will require alcohol or strong alcoholic tincture, a cotton swab, or a semi-rigid brush. A brush or swab should be moistened with alcohol and try to remove the parasites. It is convenient to treat plant sinuses with a brush, and leaf plates with a swab. Such treatments must be repeated when pests are re-discovered. Often, parasites are hidden under a layer of earth at the base of the trunk, they should also be removed with alcohol, it is also necessary to remove the top layer of soil and replace it with a fresh one. Such alcohol treatment is well tolerated by lignified parts of the plant (trunk, branches), glossy leaves and is not tolerated by the pubescent leaves of some plants (tolmia, figs, etc.), therefore, before complete processing, the plant should be tried on individual leaves.

Act water-oil emulsion based on the effect of oil blocking the spiracles of insects. To give a greater covering ability, the oil is mixed with soap solutions. A little dishwashing detergent or soap is taken in a glass of water and 2-3 tbsp. tablespoons of machine (maybe sunflower) oil, all this is shaken until an emulsion is formed and applied with a cotton swab or brush to all surfaces of the plant, while it is imperative to protect the soil from emulsion drops.The plant is left treated for several hours, then thoroughly washed under the shower. You should check the tolerance of the leaves of such exposure.

Currently, many different insecticides (substances against insects) are offered, however, in indoor conditions, it is necessary to take into account, in addition to the effect on insects and on the plants themselves, their harmfulness to people, especially for children, as well as for dogs, cats, birds, fish and others. pets. Aktara, in my opinion, is just the drug that has a good damaging effect on a wide range of insect pests and is relatively safe for everyone around, including plants. Aktara comes in the form of water-soluble granules (oil fillers are sometimes toxic to plants, such as hibiscus). An aqueous emulsion obtained during breeding, practically odorless, hazard class for humans - 3, is relatively safe for pets, including fish. Another indisputable advantage of Aktara is its systemic action. After processing, it accumulates in the tissues of the plant and acts on the parasites from the inside, provides long-term (up to two weeks) protection.

Recently, new systemic water-soluble drugs have begun to appear on the market, replacing older, more toxic ones. A drug similar in properties to Aktara is Apaches, much more economical, however, there are no instructions for using it on indoor plants. It should be noted that the recommendations for use on the Internet do not coincide with the official ones.

Spider mite refers to arachnid arthropods, feeds on cell sap through leaf bites. It is a common pest of indoor plants. Signs of damage: on the underside of the leaf (sometimes on the upper side) there are small, about 0.5 mm, light grains (as if sprinkled with flour), with a massive defeat, a cobweb is visible. The leaf in the places of the bite becomes discolored, covered with small yellow spots. Subsequently, with a strong defeat, the leaf falls off. The mite spreads easily through the air, is present always and everywhere, but only affects weakened plants. Strong plants kept in optimal conditions are able to withstand the mite. Risk factors include too dry air, overheating of a plant or a clod of earth in the sun, drying out of the soil, dehydration (sometimes roots rot and die off due to excessive watering), improper feeding, often an overdose of nitrogen fertilizers.

About a new safe method of struggle - in the article Essential oil - for ticks and nematodes

Gall nematodes - parasitic worms from the nematode class. The roots of plants are affected, causing the formation of blistering galls. Usually applied with plants. It is very difficult to detect the parasite visually, these are whitish worms 1-2 mm long. The female settles in the roots, lays several thousand eggs, from which larvae emerge. Some of the larvae migrate into the soil and from there to the roots of other plants, some remain in the roots of the host plant and form new galls next to the maternal ones, often forming galls that are complex in shape and rather large in size. The affected plant suffers from poor work of the root system, the leaves acquire a light color, there is a loss of turgor and leaf fall. The plant sheds buds and ovaries. When root nematodes are found, strict quarantine rules must be followed.

Methods for dealing with root gall nematodes. Try to remove severely damaged root areas. Thermally treat the root system and soil by immersion in a large volume of water with a temperature of +50 0 C. Of the chemicals, Fitoverm or Agravertin are recommended when applied to the soil with dry powder, but there are no drugs in retail sale in this form.

Ekogel turned out to be effective against nematodes, which was initially considered only as an anti-stress drug. Chitosan, which is part of Ecogel, strengthens the cell walls so much that nutrition and spread of the nematode in plant tissues becomes impossible.

It should be borne in mind that in some plants the presence of root nodules is the norm; they should not be confused with galls. In representatives of the legume family, nitrogen-fixing bacteria live in such nodules.

Pests of coniferous trees

Sawflies often eat the needles of pines and firs. The most common are common and red sawflies.

Common spruce sawfly in the photo

Common spruce sawfly in the southern region develops in two generations. In April - May, the larvae often completely eat the needles. At the end of June, the pests of coniferous trees that have finished feeding on the branches of spruce make dense cocoons in which they pupate. After 2-3 weeks, sawflies of the second generation appear and destroy the young needles. They overwinter in soil or in a coniferous litter.

Sawfly red pine develops in one generation. Harms from the beginning of May, feeds on needles, and sometimes on the bark of young shoots. In August, it lays eggs inside the needles of young pine shoots, where it hibernates.

Green larvae (larvae) of the sawfly in the photo

Green larvae (larvae) of the sawfly, harmful to juniper, have 3 dark stripes on the body and a brown head. They damage needles and shoots by eating away internal tissues.

Eating pine needles by larvae reduces the growth of pine trees, weakened trees are colonized by other pests (bark beetles and golden beetles), specialized species for feeding on various conifers.

Spider mite... This pest on conifers is clearly visible with morning dew. A thin cobweb covers young shoots in groups. The smallest mites (0.3-0.5 mm) move along this web. From the suction of the juice, the needles turn brown. The pest is especially dangerous in dry hot summers, when it manages to give up to 8 generations.

These pests of conifers can also cause premature falling of needles.

Adult insects hibernate under bark scales and at the base of needles growing in bunches.

If the needles at the top of the shoots in junipers are enlarged, then this is a sign of damage by the juniper needle mite. It is necessary to process conifers from pests when the first signs of damage appear.

Pine bug... The bugs found on trees are yellowish or reddish brown, similar in color to pine bark. Their size is from 3 to 5 mm. Bed bugs and their larvae hibernate in litter and under exfoliated bark at the base of the trunk. In the spring, they crawl out of their wintering grounds and suck the juice from the trunk and shoots of pine trees.

Pests disrupt the conducting system of plants, which causes yellowing of the needles, a decrease in growth and a general weakening of the tree. With severe damage on young pines, dry tops, curvature of the trunks, and sometimes the death of the tree are formed.

Aphid... It is very dangerous for spruces to settle with this pest. This sucking insect is only 1-2 mm in size and has a green coloration, so it is difficult to see it on the needles. Aphids cause yellowing and dropping of needles, often massive.

It is important to detect the pest on the branches and needles as early as possible and carry out a series of spraying with insecticides at intervals of one and a half to two weeks, until the aphids are completely destroyed.

You can detect the pest by shaking the twigs over a white sheet of paper. The development of aphids is already noted in May with the appearance of young needles.

Juniper aphids are found on young shoots of juniper. With mass reproduction, young plants can be severely affected by this pest: growth is delayed, curvature and twisting of shoots occur. Spraying is carried out in the spring, as soon as the pest appears.

Pine aphid - grayish, strongly haired, has an oblong shape. Its rows are easy to notice on the needles of a common or mountain pine. Spraying with insecticides is carried out in April - May.

Mealybug (hermes). This small (up to 4 mm) sucking insect, similar to aphids, poses a certain danger to conifers. The body of the pest is oval, yellowish, densely covered with white waxy secretions. In summer, sticky white patches of "cotton wool" form on the needles and young shoots.

This white fluffy bloom on the needles of trees and shrubs indicates the presence of Hermes aphids. As a result of feeding the worms, yellowing and shedding of the needles occurs. In case of severe damage, young trees may die.

Winged individuals of spruce-fir hermes in the photo

Winged individuals of spruce-fir hermes cause curvature of needles in places where aphids feed and yellowing. At the buds, adult females appear on the bark, and brown or yellowish-green larvae appear on the needles. Spraying with insecticides is carried out in the spring when signs of pest colonization appear.

Adult larvae of insects hibernate on the bark of branches and trunks under scales and in cracks. Several generations are given a year.

During the winter, many worms die, and therefore there are few of them in the spring. The number of the pest gradually increases over the summer period.

The most dangerous is the juniper bug, as well as the bug that develops on larch.

Shield... Thuja and junipers, rarely ate, suffer from scabies. Pest settling begins from the middle of the crown. Small, shiny, brown shields stick around the base of the shoots. The needles turn brown and crumble. A new generation of scale insects in the conditions of the southern region hatches at the end of May and populates young growths.

On young cones and needles one can see rounded shields of female juniper scale insects or elongated shields of males up to 1-1.5 mm in size. These pests cause the dying off of the bark, drying out and curvature of the shoots, and a decrease in annual growth. Yew, juniper, thuja, cypress are striking.

The pine scabbard hurts in a similar way. Scabbards are hidden under the needles, and therefore inaccessible for destruction.

False shield also very dangerous for conifers. It populates twigs and needles. This pest is sprayed with "Fufanon" or "Spark Double Effect". Spraying of conifers from scabbards and false scutes is carried out in the spring before bud break.

The treatments are repeated in the first half of June with an interval of 8-10 days, alternating these preparations with "Bison" or "Alatar".

Caterpillars of juniper shoot moth in the photo

Juniper Shoot Moth Caterpillars eat out the insides of the shoots, severely damage various forms of common juniper. When these pests of conifers are found, spider nests are collected and sprayed with pesticides to control them.

Pine shoots - a small butterfly harms the caterpillars, gnawing the buds, as a result, panicles from needles with resin are formed at the ends of the shoots.

Tumbler - a small butterfly harms caterpillars, biting into the bark and forming resinous galls that grow in size. Shoots above the galls are curved and dry out.

Pine silkworm Is a butterfly with a wingspan of up to 7 cm. Its caterpillars are a danger to conifers. They are brownish gray and reach 7 cm in length. Caterpillars begin to emerge from eggs before budding and continue to hatch until mid-June, within two months they eat needles and pupate. Butterflies fly out in August and lay eggs (200-600 each). In the egg stage, the pest hibernates.

Less often, moth caterpillars damage the needles, and cones suffer from tar and moth. When growing pine seedlings, the death of plants can be caused by May beetles. Both beetles, eating the needles, and larvae, damaging the roots, are harmful.

Signs, causes and prevention

The signs, causes and prevention of damage to the orchid with a scabbard can be of a different nature, so it is very important to recognize in the early stages what is happening to the flower.

Scabbards, however, like false shields, do not appear on healthy plants, since the latter have immunity, which repels pests. Most often, improper care leads to the appearance of such unexpected guests: a violation of temperature, watering, humidity and lighting. Also, improper fertilization and overfeeding with nitrogen preparations can lead to the appearance of scabbards and false scutes.

Due to improper care, the orchid weakens and stops producing antibodies. Most often, pests appear on the plant in winter, when the sunny day is shorter and the humidity in the apartments is not very high.

The signs of damage to the orchid by the shield and false shield are almost identical. The leaves of the flower begin to curl, lose their elasticity and rich green color. Yellow outlines begin to appear at the edges of the leaves. If you turn the leaf over, you will notice small bumps of yellow or brown color (some species have darker shades).

The scale insects, in contrast to the false scale insects, do not let poison into the plant, they seem to drink all the juices from the flower, which makes the plant in a bad state. These small bugs gradually fill the leaves, spread over the surface and affect the entire bush, which leads to the death of the flower.

The appearance of pests scares many, but you should not immediately abandon the flower, because you can try to save it. The first thing to know is the preventive actions that every gardener should follow:

  1. Do not buy a plant from the store that is damaged or you notice sticky sap on the leaves. These plants are most likely already infected, and if you bring them into your home, they will infect other flowers as well.
  2. For prevention, you can use neem oil. It is effective in the early stages, when there are still not so many scale insects.
  3. And most importantly, try to maintain the optimum air temperature and humidity within 70%. Do not over-water the plant, and after watering, do not leave excess moisture in the pan of the pot.

The scale insect is an unpleasant insect, and to prevent its appearance, it is enough to maintain optimal living conditions for the orchid. But this does not always work out, and pests attack the plant even in the most experienced gardeners. Not everything is as critical as it might seem at first glance, you can still fight for an orchid.

The false shield also has a large species diversity.

  1. Soft. Loves orchid, aroid, citrus, palm plants. It manifests itself in the form of candied secretions on leaves and sticky deposits on glasses.
  2. Acacia. Damages currants, plums, gooseberries, peaches, cherries, apple trees and others.
  3. Spruce. Based on the name, it is clear that conifers are the target of the defeat.
  4. Plum. Appreciates the juice of stone fruit and rosaceous plants.

Soft false shield

Acacia false shield

Among the variety of conifers, perhaps the spruce is the most beloved tree for everyone. This is both an integral attribute of the New Year holidays, and a symbol of all evergreen conifers. But regardless of the type or variety of our Christmas tree, there is always a danger of its infection by pests, which must be prevented in time, armed with useful knowledge. In this article, I will tell you how to protect all types of spruce from a dangerous pest - a false shield, which not only damages the appearance of the needles, but also often leads to the death of the plant.

Information about these pests is not so widely known to gardeners, since previously there were few such serious outbreaks of the reproduction of false scutes, as now. There is practically no data on how to properly deal with them. In the article, we will consider the most effective drugs for combating false shields, the timing and methods of their use. The material was obtained as a result of a three-year study of spruce false shields.

On garden plots, two types of false shields are most often found: a large spruce false shield (Physokermes piceae) and a small spruce false shield (Physokermes hemicryphus), sometimes there is a Hungarian spruce false shield (Physokermes inopinatus).

The females of the false shield do not look like insects at all.

The danger of the pest also lies in the fact that it is difficult for an outwardly inexperienced gardener to determine the infection, since the females of the false shield do not look like insects at all. They look like brownish growths that can be mistaken for buds in the internodes of the branches.

Why are false shields so dangerous?

Females and larvae of pseudo-scale insects feed on the juices of needles and spruce shoots, weaken them, and cause pathological changes in plant tissues. The needles on the branches where the pest develops are often underdeveloped, shortened, sometimes, especially in the Canadian spruce, becomes brown and falls off prematurely. Often the growth of the whole plant slows down, the branches dry out and the needles fall off.

How to identify a spruce infestation

First of all, the presence of false shields can be determined by the so-called "mediation" of oil. The females of these pests secrete a sweet mass consisting of sugars and excrement, the so-called honeydew honey, or honeydew. Honeydew honey attracts flies, ants, wasps, and bees when flowering plants produce little to no nectar. By the way, this is another sign of pest infection - when honey bees fly and buzz around the spruce.

The presence of false shields can be determined by the so-called "mediation" of oil.

Also, "honeydew" serves as an excellent substrate for the development of saprophytic fungi, primarily Apiosporium piniphilum. A sign of the development of the fungus is a black bloom on the needles and branches.

Darkening of the branches of the spruce, the appearance of a soot deposit and the presence of drops of sticky liquid around the tree are other signs of infection.

It is advisable to call a specialist for a thorough professional examination, confirmation of the infection and the organization of measures to eliminate it.

Females and males of false scutes are very different in appearance from each other. As already mentioned above, females are easily confused with plant buds, since they do not look like insects, their body is swollen and spherical. They are practically legless - instead of legs, only their rudiments are visible in the microscope. Females lead an attached lifestyle. Having plunged their proboscis into the escape, they no longer leave this place until the end of their lives. The adult female of the large spruce false scutellum is brown or yellow-brown, smooth, shiny, up to 8 mm long and 7.5 mm wide. If you open up a mature female, you can see that the entire interior is filled with eggs. As the eggs are laid, the surface of the female's body turns brown and hardens; after the death of the female, it serves as a cover for the laid eggs. Oviposition continues from late April to mid-May. Females can do without males and lay unfertilized eggs.

Females can do without males and lay unfertilized eggs.

Males, unlike females, have an elongated body, clearly dissected into the head, chest and abdomen, one pair of wings, well-developed legs and antennae, but they have no oral apparatus, unlike females. They are much rarer than females, have tiny sizes - 1.5–2 mm, and live only a few hours.

Eggs are oval, crimson in color, powdered with a thin layer of white powdery wax. One female can lay up to 1000 or more eggs. Such high fertility is not accidental - mortality in the early stages of development is very high.

The larvae of the first instar, that is, those that have just hatched from the eggs, are called tramps. The beginning of hatching of vagrants is the second decade of June, almost a month after the appearance of the first oviparous females. The tramps are mobile, which is why they got this name, after leaving the body of the females, they actively crawl along the needles and twigs of the spruce in search of suitable places for feeding. After completing active feeding, which lasts about a week, the larvae of the first instar acquire a reddish-brown color and enter diapause. Only in mid-August is the process of their development resumed, when molt begins at the second instar.

Second instar larvae are orange and brown-orange in color, flat. Having finished feeding, they leave for the winter: males on the underside of the needles, and females attach themselves under the scales of the buds of young shoots.

The development cycle of the pest takes place within one year.

Small spruce false shield (Physokermes hemicryphus)

The terms of development of large and small false scutes differ. Females of the lesser false shield usually appear a couple of weeks later than the large one, somewhere in the first decade of May. One generation also develops during the year.

The females of the small spruce pseudoscale are similar to the females of the large pseudo-scale, but smaller. They are brown or dark brown, smooth, shiny, up to 3 mm long and 3.5 mm wide. Oviposition occurs from early June to early July. Lays from 30 to 500 eggs. Males are very rare and also resemble males of the large spruce false shield.

The tramps go out in the second half of June. The larvae, having finished feeding, leave for the winter. Larvae of the second instar hibernate, female larvae in whorls under scales, male larvae on needles. The transition of female larvae to the adult stage occurs in the first decade of May.

Hungarian Spruce False Shield (Physokermes inopinatus)

The adult female is brown, shiny, swollen, kidney-shaped, 5.0–8.0 mm in diameter, the young female is pinkish-yellow. The eggs are light brown. Males are always numerous, developing on the needles, on the upper side, and females at the base of the branching of branches and needles. One generation develops a year. Larvae of the second instar hibernate. Adults appear in the second decade of May, the first tramps crawling along the needles were noted in the second - third decade of June.

Terms and methods of processing spruce from spruce false shields

It is quite difficult to deal with false shields. This is due to the fact that the period when they are most susceptible to the action of insecticides is rather short and should not be missed. The most vulnerable are false shields when the integument of immature females is still thin, transparent, soft, which allows drugs to easily penetrate and act on them. As the females develop, the integument becomes strongly compacted, which prevents the penetration of contact drugs.

Thus, false shields are most vulnerable to insecticides in the period from the beginning of the formation of females to the beginning of their maturation, which in the time interval is limited to two weeks. Based on the peculiarities of the development of false scutes, it is better to carry out treatments on immature females in late April - early May.

False shields are most vulnerable to insecticides in the period from the beginning of the formation of females to the beginning of their maturation, which in the time interval is limited to two weeks.

Starting from June, it makes no sense to fight against false scutes, since during this period the females no longer feed (feeding occurs until May), and their covers serve only as a cover for eggs.

The fight can be carried out in two ways: the first is spraying the crown with drugs, the second is the root application of the chemical.

Spraying the crown with preparations

The most effective are 3 drugs: Movento, Engio and Proteus. The last two have shown high efficiency in the fight against false shield, due to a complex two-component composition, which has both contact and systemic action. Movento, a new drug on the Ukrainian market, has also proven to be effective.

Angio 247 SC k. C., 3.6 ml / 10 l, with a consumption rate of 3 liters for a tree of the form of a Konik 1 m high, for a tree with a usual crown height of 2-3 m, the consumption rate is about 3-5 liters. The consumption rate of the drug for adult trees is about 100 liters.

Movento to. with. - the recommended minimum concentration is 15 ml / 10 l, with a consumption rate of 3 l for a 1 m high Konica tree. Give one concentration, the drug is new, works well with the minimum concentration.

Proteus 110 p. 6 ml / 10 l, with a consumption rate of 3 liters per 1 m high Konik tree. The consumption rate of the preparation for mature trees is up to 100 liters.

It is best to process plants early in the morning or in the evening in dry weather.

Root application of the drug

Aktara 25 WG c. g., 1.4 g per 0.5 l of water (0.3% solution). The consumption rate of the drug is 3-4 liters of working fluid for a Konik-shaped plant with a height of 1-1.5 m or 1-2 liters for a spruce with an ordinary crown of the same height.

The effectiveness of the introduction of Actara under the root is due to the special properties of the active substance of this drug. It is able to rise from the roots up the xylem of the trunk and reach the branches and needles on which the false scutes feed. Root application is very good for small forms of spruce with dense needles and dense crown, such as the Canadian spruce Conika, albertiana Daisy’s White, albertiana Alberta Globe or the European nested Nidiformis spruce.

In comparison with spraying, the advantage of root application on plants with a strongly thickened crown is the fact that, due to the high density of the needles, there are always areas inside the crown that did not get the drug. The drug acts gradually, penetrating into young shoots. The death of the pest occurs two weeks after treatment.

Although this method is more expensive than spraying, it gives good results, especially when treating spruce trees infected with both large and small false shields at the same time. The period of action of the drug with root application is longer, and its action will be enough for a large small spruce false shield that begins to develop later.

Some authors propose to carry out processing in June along the tramps, when they are actively moving along the needles, or in August, after coming out of diapause. However, insects are small and poorly visible to the naked eye; not every gardener will notice them. In addition, tramps leave the body of the female unevenly, and we believe that it is inappropriate to fight the larvae, since some of the pests can avoid the effects of drugs and continue development.

In conclusion of the article, I would like to once again draw attention to the need for careful observation of the plants on your site. Spruce false shields are serious pests, so take the problem seriously! Examine spruce branches in spring so as not to miss the appearance of females of spruce false shields and, if necessary, process the plants in time.


Spruce false shields are serious pests of firs. With their mass reproduction, even 30-meter spruce can die.

The processing time is determined taking into account the timing of the development of females. Based on the peculiarities of the development of false scutes, it is better to carry out processing on immature females in late April - early May. It does not make sense to fight against false shields since June, since during this period the females no longer feed, and their covers serve only as a cover for eggs.

The fight can be done in two ways. The first one is spraying the crown with the preparations Engio, Proteus, Movento. The second method is the root introduction of the chemical Aktar.

The frequency of treatments by spraying is 2 times with an interval of 2 weeks. If during the first treatment you used the Enzhio preparation, it is advisable to replace it with Proteus in the second treatment.

Healthy plants in your area!

Scabbards (Diaspididae), a family of homoptera insects.

The body is covered from above with a wax shield (hence the name). Sexual dimorphism is pronounced.

Females without wings and without legs, males are smaller than females, have one pair of wings, normally developed limbs and reduced mouth organs.

Larvae and adult females suck on plant juices. Shields can be from 0.5 mm to 5 mm in size. Females are covered with a convex shield. While insects with a shield are motionless, young individuals (not yet covered with a shield) are quite mobile. The shield can be either round or elongated.

The types of scale insects are very diverse, they differ in color and size:

Acacia false shield (Parthenolecanium corni Bouche.).

Widespread. It affects various fruit, berry, forest and decorative deciduous species. Most often, the pest damages plums, currants, gooseberries. Hibernates as second instar larvae on the bark. In spring, the larvae feed on sap from the bark tissue. Females mature in May, laying up to 2000 eggs. The hatched larvae feed on the sap of the leaves.

California scabbard (Diaspidiotus perniciosus Comst.).

It became widespread in the southern regions of the European Union of Russia and the Far East. A pest with a wide range of food. More than 200 species of woody plants are affected. Particularly harmful to apple, pear, cherry plum, plum, sweet cherry, as well as currants. Hibernates on bark in the form of first instar larvae. In the spring, the larvae grow, turn into second instar larvae, and then into females and males. In the future, the females reflect actively moving larvae, the so-called "vagrants", spreading along the tree and by the wind to other trees, feeding on the juice of fruits, leaves, bark. The larvae have a shield, at first white, then gray, later the shield turns black. All development takes about two months. Has from one (in the Far East) to four generations (in the Caucasus). Plants are greatly weakened, their bark cracks, leaves fly around, branches partially die, fruits become covered with red spots.

Cactus scale - the male is orange. The female is pale yellow, the scutellum is round, yellow, about 2 mm.

Brown scale (Chrysomphalus dictyospermi )... A pest that damages a wide range of plants. The female has a brown scutellum, with a slight bulge in the center, up to 2 mm in diameter. Pests are located on leaves, more often on the upper side, less often on fruits, sometimes on young shoots. As a result of damage, yellow round spots appear on the leaves, leaves and fruits fall off.

Bay shield - the male is pale cherry. The female is white or pale cherry, with a rounded brown shell-shaped shield with a red-yellow elevation in front and concentric rings and ledges.

Oleander scale (Aspidiotus nerii )... A pest that damages a wide range of plants. The scutellum of the female is irregular, white, flat, with bright yellow larval skins, up to 1.5-2 mm in diameter. The male is brown-yellow, covered with a thin white bloom. Pests are located on various parts of plants, mainly on the underside of the leaves. Light green or yellow spots appear on the leaves, with severe damage they dry out.

Palm transparent scale (Abgrallaspis cyahophylli )... A pest that damages a wide range of plants. The scutellum of the female is translucent white or whitish-gray, flat, round, with light brown larval skins, about 2 mm in diameter. The male is pale yellow. The larva is linear, white-fluffy. Pests are located mainly on the underside of leaves, petioles, unblown leaves inside plants, causing foliage to dry out in case of massive damage.

Ivy scale - body, separated from the scutellum, ovoid, yellow, grayish-white scutellum, about 3 mm, round.

Pink scale - the male is pale red topped. The female is ovoid, flat, yellow, with a round, flat, convex shield only in the middle.

Apple comma shield (Lepidosaphes ulmi L.)... Widely distributed in places of cultivation of gardens. Damages apple, pear, plum, apricot, blackthorn, hawthorn, cotoneaster and other plants of the Rosaceae family. The shields of females are elongated and curved like a comma. It hibernates in the form of eggs under the shields of dead females, on the bark. At the end of the flowering of apple trees, larvae appear from them, are covered with shields, after 6-7 weeks they turn into females, each lay up to 100 eggs and die. They are of one generation. Males are relatively rare.

False shields, or coccids (Coccidae)

False shields, or coccids (Coccidae) differ from real scale insects in that they do not have a wax shell, and eggs and larvae are protected by the drying skin of a dying female.

Olive false shield (Saissetia oleae)... A widespread pest that damages various plants. The female is dark brown, dull, strongly convex, often almost spherical, 2-5 mm long, up to 2.5 mm high. On the dorsal side there is a convex pattern in the shape of the letter "H". Females lay up to 2500 eggs. Pests are located on the stems, less often on the leaves along the veins, causing the shoots to dry out when massively infested.

Soft false shield (Coccus hesperidum)... A pest that damages a wide range of plants. Females have a flat asymmetrical body of yellowish-brown color, broadly oval, 3-4 mm long. Ovoviviparity is characteristic of the species, that is, the female lays up to 1000 eggs, from which larvae immediately emerge.Pests are located along the veins of leaves, less often on the stems of plants, causing deformation of the leaves and their twisting and, if severely damaged, drying out. A sooty fungus settles on the damaged areas.

Oblong cushion (Chloropulvinaria floccifera)... A widespread pest that damages a wide range of plants. The female is greenish-yellow, round-oval, slightly convex, 4–5 mm long, 3 mm wide. The female's body has a white egg sac up to 8 mm long and 2-3 mm wide at the bottom in the rear part. Pest females lay 600 to 2000 eggs. Pests are located on the leaves along the veins, also on young shoots and fruits, causing yellowing of the leaves, and in case of mass damage, the leaves and shoots dry out.

Hemispherical false shield (Saissetia coffeae)... A widespread species that damages various types of plants. The female has a smooth, almost semicircular, spherical body, yellow-brown or brown in color, 2-5 mm long. females lay up to 2500 eggs. Pests damage the stems, leaves of plants, in case of massive damage, causing the shoots to dry out.

Most species of scale insects reproduce by laying eggs, but there are also viviparous species. Pests keep on the lower and upper sides of leaves, shoots and plant trunks. Only young larvae settle, which stick to various parts of the plant, adult insects are motionless.

With a strong infection, the leaves along the veins and the trunks of plants are covered with a kind of bloom, formed from a large accumulation of scale insects. In damaged plants, growth and development are delayed, the leaves turn yellow and fall off prematurely.

Shields and false shields secrete a sticky liquid - a honeydew on which a sooty fungus settles, which further impairs the development of plants.

Shields and false shields damage many indoor plants: palm trees, citrus fruits, oleander, ivy, cyperus, asparagus, aucubu and others.

Adults and larvae function all year round, sucking the cell sap from the plant. Damaged plants turn yellow, develop incorrectly, leaves often fall off, young shoots dry out.

Shields belong to the rapidly multiplying pests. Reproduction can be either asexual or conventional. It occurs by laying eggs under the scutellum, and some species are viviparous. After hatching, the scale insect goes through several stages of development. At the initial stage, the scale insects are very mobile, and can quickly spread, in particular, to neighboring plants.

Females are motionless, but males can even fly during their life.... However, the life cycle of the male is very short. They live only a few days, unlike women, who live for several months.

Under good conditions, more females are born, under bad conditions, more males. The composition of the population changes itself in such a way as to improve (on demand) mobility, and move to a more favorable place for life.

External signs of damage:

Sometimes brown or light rounded scales appear on the leaves of plants, which are difficult to separate from the leaf. This is the adult stage of the scale insect.

False shield defeat: leaves that have lost their luster, turned brown and covered with sticky secretions. The pest sucks out cell sap from leaves, stems and fruits. As a result, yellowish or reddish-brown spots are formed on the damaged areas, which can lead to the death of plant parts.

A false shield can be distinguished from a shield by the following features: False shields do not emit a sticky sweet secret. The shield covering the false shield from above does not fuse with the insect inside. This is easy to determine by ripping off the shield - the pest will remain attached to the plant.

The shield also differs in shape - in pseudo-scale insects, it is flat, in scale insects - in the shape of a pea.

Preventive actions:

Especially in late winter - early spring, you need to take care of a well-ventilated place, frequent spraying of plants with water, regular inspection, especially from below.

Control measures:

Shields are protected from external influences by a shield, so the fight against them is not easy. Clean the scabbards with a toothbrush or a cloth soaked in alcohol or soap solution, you can use a soap-kerosene emulsion.

Alcohol solution with soap.
The mixture consists of 15 grams of liquid soap, 10 ml of denatured alcohol and 1 liter of warm water. However, you need to be very careful here, especially for soft-leaved and thin-leaved plants. These species are very sensitive to alcohol, therefore, they are not sprayed with liquid, but applied to the insects themselves with a brush. If you really want to use this method, it is best to do a small sensitivity test on one sheet first.

For severe damage, the following chemicals are used:

When fighting the scabbard and false shield with a strong lesion, one treatment is usually not enough, two or three treatments are required, preferably with drugs from different chemical groups, a week between treatments.

Admiral, CE
Contact-intestinal hormonal insecticide (pyriproxyfen 100 g / l.).
Spraying plants with a solution to combat scale insects is taken at the rate of 6 ml per 10 liters of water.

Aktara, VDG, KS
Intestinal insecticide (thiamethoxam 250 g / kg and 240 g / l.)
Aktara VDG (250 g / kg thiamethoxam).

When watering the soil with Aktara under the root: 8g / 10L of water (0.8g / 1L of water). Repeated watering of the soil under plants with a height of 30-40 cm. Consumption - up to 10 l / 10 sq. m. (for 250 pots).
When spraying: 8g / 10l of water. 0.8 g. / 1 ​​l. water. Spraying plants when pests appear on them. Consumption - up to 2l / 100 sq.m.
Aktara KS (240 g / l. Thiamethoxam).
Watering the soil under the plants during the growing season: 1 ml / 10 l of water. One treatment. Working fluid consumption - up to 10l / 10 sq.m. (for 250 pots).

Actellik, KE
HSystemic organophosphorus insectoacaricide of intestinal action (pirimiphos-methyl (organophosphorus group) 500 g / l.).
It is not recommended for use in a residential area due to its high toxicity!
Spraying plants: 2 ml per 1 liter of water. Solution consumption up to 2 liters per 10 sq.m.

Apploud, SP
Insecticide, chitin synthesis inhibitor (buprofezin 250 g / kg).
Spraying plants with a solution: 10 g per 10 liters of water (1 g per 1 liter of water.)

Bankol, SP
Intestinal insecticide (bensultap, 500g / kg).
Spraying plants with a solution: 0.5 to 0.7 g per liter.

Biotlin, VK
Systemic insecticide of intestinal action (imidacloprid, 200 g / l.).
Spraying plants with a solution: 5 ml per 10 liters of water.

Confidor Extra
Systemic insecticide of contact-intestinal action (imidacloprid 700 g / kg.).
Spraying plants with a solution: 1 g of the drug per 10 liters of water, with severe damage 1 g per 5 liters of water.

If the plants are short (up to 30 cm), try watering them under the root with a solution of Aktara. This insecticide penetrates the plants through the roots and makes all its aboveground organs toxic to insects for some time. When treating with an insecticide, wipe the windowsill or shelf where the plant stood, as well as the window glass, since small larvae may not be noticed. To reduce the harmfulness of scale insects and false scale insects, it is also possible to use the fact that the reproduction of many species of these pests is greatly slowed down by a drop in the relative humidity of the air and prolonged exposure to sunlight. Therefore, be moderate with watering, avoid crowding the plants, ventilate the room more often, isolate the infected plant from others, move it to a brighter place.

Photo of scale insects and false scales on various plants:

Scabbard on indoor plants - discussions and treatment methods on the forum

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