By Adrian Hunsberger firstname.lastname@example.org
Q. My plants are getting covered in white fluffy stuff and a black mold. Even my car is turning sticky. What can I do?
A: You sent me a sample of the gumbo limbo spiraling whitefly (the new name is the rugose spiraling whitefly). This pest has been in the Miami area for a few years and now infests much of southeast Florida. It is not a serious pest to most plants but it does create a mess.
You can treat infested plants yourself or hire a landscape pest control company. Use a soil applied systemic insecticide and always follow the label directions. This type of insecticide is available at garden centers, retail nurseries and agricultural supply companies. Many products last up to a year, so don’t apply them more often. They take a few weeks to work but they are long-lasting.
To learn more about whiteflies and other South Florida pests, visit this website: http://miami-dade.ifas.ufl.edu/ If you have questions, you can call your local University of Florida Extension office (Broward County 954-357-5270, Miami-Dade County 305-248-3311 x 228 or x 222, Monroe 305-292-4501, Palm Beach 561-233-1700).