How to Get Rid of Soil Mites

Soil mites are incredibly tiny, measuring only 0.1mm in length. But don’t let their small size fool you. These little creatures can do a lot of damage to your plants and garden by feeding on them and causing a variety of other problems that can cause serious damage to your plants. If you live in an environment where the climate is warm and humid, soil mites can pose quite an issue for your beloved greenery. Thankfully, there are some things you can do to get rid of these pests and protect your plants from further harm.

These mites are among some of the most mysterious creatures on earth. Little is known about them. That, for some, has been a terrifying reality. For some, it is so much worse as they find themselves unable to get rid of garden soil mites from their gardens, with mites threatening to destroy their crops. However, we will be sharing tips on how to get rid of these annoying pests once and for all.

What are soil mites?

Soil mites are tiny creatures that measure only 0.001 to 0.02 inches long. They are arachnids and belong to the order Acarina. Soil mites have eight legs and two body segments. They vary in color from reddish-brown to yellowish-green, but they are usually not seen as they live underground or in plant debris.

Soil mites are not insects. They are related to ticks, spiders, and scorpions. These creepy little mites can find their way into the house. Once in your home, they most commonly reside in carpeting, bedding, and family pets.

There are about 15,000 species of soil mites, but only a few of these cause problems for plants. These pests feed on plant roots, leaves, flowers, and pollen. They can also transmit diseases to plants.

How do I know if I have soil mites?

The best way to determine if you have an infestation of soil mites is to check for visible signs of damage. You can identify soil mites with the following symptoms:

  • Look for tiny specks on the surface of the soil or potting mix.
  • Look for webbing that is not caused by spiders.
  • Look for pinprick holes in plant leaves and stems that might be caused by spider mites sucking out the contents of the leaves and stems (the pinholes will have a yellowish appearance).
  • Leaves are covered with a white, powdery substance.
  • Stems and leaves turn brown and fall off the plant.
  • The plant becomes stunted or does not grow well.

The easiest way to find out if your houseplants have soil mites is to use a magnifying glass or microscope. Look closely at the roots of your plants for small white bugs crawling around on them. If you see any, it’s likely they are soil mites.

Causes of Soil Mite Infestation

Mites in house plants are more likely to be found in soil that is too wet. This can be a result of overwatering or poor drainage. How much you water your houseplant depends on the specific plant and its pot size, but most indoor plants do well when allowed to dry out slightly between watering sessions.

Pay attention to the type of soil your plant is being grown on as well. Plants growing in poorly draining soils such as peat moss will have mite problems because they are kept too wet for too long by the nature of their media’s makeup (peat holds a lot of moisture). If it still has good drainage, re-potting into new potting soil should help banish it from your indoor garden once and for all.

Why should you get rid of soil mites?

While they’re not harmful to humans or animals, they do feed on plant roots and cause damage by tunneling through the root system. They can also migrate into your home through cracks in the walls, floorboards, or other openings.

In some cases, soil mites are simply a nuisance because of their tendency to crawl on people or pets during the night. In other cases, however, soil mites can cause serious damage to plants, which may lead to expensive repairs or even the death of your favorite plants.

Soil mite prevention and control

There are several methods that you can use to get rid of soil mites. The first and most important step in controlling this pest problem is to keep your plants healthy and strong. This means watering them properly, fertilizing them regularly, and keeping their roots free from pests such as mealybugs and beetles.

Soil mite prevention begins with making sure that the soil where your garden or lawn grows has no holes or cracks in it where water could enter into it. You should also make sure that there are no leaks around any pipes or other plumbing fixtures on which these insects may be living near your home’s foundation walls or flooring surfaces. If there is a leaky pipe somewhere, you may need to repair it or replace it completely.

The next step in soil mite prevention is to make sure that there are no standing pools of water near any of your plants. This includes gutters on roofs and decks, as well as puddles around garden furniture and pool decks.

It is also important to practice good garden hygiene to help prevent soil mite infestations. Keep the garden clean by removing dead and decaying plant material, including fallen leaves and old fruit or vegetables.

One of the most important steps in soil mite control is using proper watering techniques. This means watering your plants deeply and infrequently, as opposed to lightly and often.

If you find that your plants are not being watered deeply enough, then consider using a drip irrigation system that will deliver water directly to the roots of your plants without needing to be submerged in them for long periods. Drip systems do require some maintenance but they can make watering easier and more efficient, especially if you have multiple plant types or large areas with uneven terrain where traditional sprinklers would struggle to reach all parts of the lawn equally well due to gravity pulling them downwards instead upwards like normal methods used by most homeowners today.

Getting rid of soil mites

The best way to prevent soil mites from becoming a problem in your garden or lawn is to take some simple steps to keep their environment as unfriendly as possible. You can also try using one of the methods mentioned below to get rid of any soil mites that may have already taken up residence in your yard or garden.

Eliminating food sources

The best way to eradicate soil mites and other types of mite infestation is to get rid of the food source in your home or garden. That is, by eliminating or reducing the use of pesticides, chemical fertilizers, and other manmade chemicals that can be detrimental not only to you but also to plants, insects, and other wildlife.

Insecticide

Another way you can easily get rid of soil mites is to use an insecticide such as neem oil or pyrethrin. These are natural products that can be purchased at most garden centers or home improvement stores.

Horticultural spray

Another thing you can do is use a horticultural oil spray. This type of spray will suffocate soil mites and other insects on contact. It’s important to note that horticultural oils should not be used when the temperature is below freezing or if there is rain in the forecast within 24 hours of spraying.

Diatomaceous earth

You can also try using a barrier such as diatomaceous earth around plants to stop the mites from reaching them. Diatomaceous earth is a natural product made from the fossilized remains of unicellular algae. It’s important to keep in mind that diatomaceous earth can also kill beneficial insects, so it should only be used as a last resort.

Using nematodes

Another is to introduce beneficial nematodes into the soil. These tiny worms eat the soil mites and help keep them under control.

Remember, the best way to get rid of soil mites is by using multiple methods and combining them together for the most effective results. This will help to ensure that you don’t have any future problems with these pesky critters invading your home or garden again.

Frequently Asked Questions

 

Are soil mites bad?

Soil mites can be good or bad, depending on their numbers and the ability of plants to keep a balance in check. These small arachnids help break down compost, eat fungi and bacteria that would otherwise harm plants, and recycle dead leaves and other organic matter. In low numbers, they are beneficial, but in high numbers, they can become pests.

Where do they come from?

Soil mites are found everywhere in the world. They thrive in moist environments and are often brought indoors on plants, in soil, or even in water.

What do they eat?

Soil mites eat fungi, bacteria, plant matter, and other organic debris.

Conclusion

The best way to get rid of soil mites is to treat the underlying issue that caused them to show up in the first place. It might be as simple as watering more regularly, or it may be something more involved. At any rate, if you want to get rid of these root-eating pests, you need to eliminate the source of their attraction.

Soil mites are not as dangerous as other pests and insects, but you should get rid of them as soon as possible because of the discomfort that they can cause you.