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Does Spiders harm orchids

#1 User is offline   season 

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Posted 19 October 2016 - 11:32 AM

Some spiders has been nesting in my orchids and whatever i do can't seem to get rid of them. Do they really harm orchids or can I leave them be?
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#2 User is offline   Busy Bee 

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Posted 21 October 2016 - 09:55 AM

Hi,
I had the same question before and been asking around. The conclusion is just leave them alone.
On the other hand, I realised that lizards and house spiders are actually good for orchids as they feast on those tiny orchid pests.

Hope this helps ^_^/>/>
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#3 User is offline   keff 

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Posted 21 October 2016 - 02:04 PM

View PostBusy Bee, on 21 October 2016 - 09:55 AM, said:

Hi,
I had the same question before and been asking around. The conclusion is just leave them alone.
On the other hand, I realised that lizards and house spiders are actually good for orchids as they feast on those tiny orchid pests.

Hope this helps ^_^/>/>/>


I don't use insecticide or fungicide. The only things that give me problems are slugs/snails, red spider mite, locusts and scale insects. They are easily dealt with:

slugs/snails - snail pellets or crushing them and feeding to my fish
red spider mite - spray water on them more often
locust - manually catch them and crush them, feed to the neighbourhood birds, or if hard to catch, spray Baygon on them.
scale insects - manually remove or neem oil for bad infestations.
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Posted 22 October 2016 - 07:04 PM

View Postkeff, on 21 October 2016 - 02:04 PM, said:

I don't use insecticide or fungicide. The only things that give me problems are slugs/snails, red spider mite, locusts and scale insects. They are easily dealt with:

slugs/snails - snail pellets or crushing them and feeding to my fish
red spider mite - spray water on them more often
locust - manually catch them and crush them, feed to the neighbourhood birds, or if hard to catch, spray Baygon on them.
scale insects - manually remove or neem oil for bad infestations.


Add one more critter. Big fat green caterpillar? No choice la, put them in outdoor community garden and the wind blow in alot of these bugs.
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#5 User is offline   Busy Bee 

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Posted 26 October 2016 - 09:47 AM

View Postkeff, on 21 October 2016 - 02:04 PM, said:

I don't use insecticide or fungicide. The only things that give me problems are slugs/snails, red spider mite, locusts and scale insects. They are easily dealt with:

slugs/snails - snail pellets or crushing them and feeding to my fish
red spider mite - spray water on them more often
locust - manually catch them and crush them, feed to the neighbourhood birds, or if hard to catch, spray Baygon on them.
scale insects - manually remove or neem oil for bad infestations.


I don't spray insecticide and fungicide too and use very similar methods to get rid of these buggers. Sometimes I get giant grasshoppers that invade and wipe out the new growth on my mint and kaffir lime :ranting2:/>/>

Ants loves to build nest in my orchid pots but I am not sure if they are friend or foe... If I find them way out of control, I would dunk a few pots in water and drown them :P/>/>
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#6 User is offline   Greyfingers 

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Posted 26 October 2016 - 02:17 PM

View PostBusy Bee, on 26 October 2016 - 09:47 AM, said:

I don't spray insecticide and fungicide too and use very similar methods to get rid of these buggers. Sometimes I get giant grasshoppers that invade and wipe out the new growth on my mint and kaffir lime :ranting2:/>/>/>

Ants loves to build nest in my orchid pots but I am not sure if they are friend or foe... If I find them way out of control, I would dunk a few pots in water and drown them :P/>/>/>

Foe. Definitely foe.
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#7 User is offline   Busy Bee 

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Posted 27 October 2016 - 10:12 AM

Greyfinger, confirm bo? How do the troops of ants cause damage?
For me, the only irritating thing they do is to stick to the orchid flower spikes. If they are foe, I need more extensive measures to eradicate them. Ant baits do not work well for me so far... any good ideas to wipe them out without touching my plants?
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#8 User is offline   keff 

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Posted 27 October 2016 - 11:52 AM

View PostBusy Bee, on 27 October 2016 - 10:12 AM, said:

Greyfinger, confirm bo? How do the troops of ants cause damage?
For me, the only irritating thing they do is to stick to the orchid flower spikes. If they are foe, I need more extensive measures to eradicate them. Ant baits do not work well for me so far... any good ideas to wipe them out without touching my plants?


Actually in my observation, they are only drinking the honeydew exuded by the orchid spikes. In my place, there are little geckos that lick up the honeydew instead of ants.

Sometimes ants may indicate a mealybug infestation. They are even known to "farm" mealybugs by carrying them from plant to plant. But I am not worried as mealybugs are easy to eradicate. I think ants bring much more benefit than harm.
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#9 User is offline   Greyfingers 

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Posted 27 October 2016 - 12:42 PM

View PostBusy Bee, on 27 October 2016 - 10:12 AM, said:

Greyfinger, confirm bo? How do the troops of ants cause damage?
For me, the only irritating thing they do is to stick to the orchid flower spikes. If they are foe, I need more extensive measures to eradicate them. Ant baits do not work well for me so far... any good ideas to wipe them out without touching my plants?


Ants are the ones responsible for bringing mealy bugs to your plants. This I think is bad enough. They would nurse these bugs and they benefit from drinking the honeydew the bugs secrete. I'm not sure if orchids are affected by mealy bugs. And I'm not sure if ants will bring scales to plants too. But they sure aren't any good to have in your garden.

Ant baits don't work on every species of ants and especially those that are sugar loving. Besides you would have to keep the baits dry. The best way would be to seek out their nests and destroy them with insect sprays.
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#10 User is offline   Busy Bee 

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Posted 27 October 2016 - 01:42 PM

Keff, how do you get rid of mealy bugs? I tried spraying with diluted Mama Lemon as recommended by NEA guys but I ended up killing the whole plants :o/>/> I had to reluctantly give up planting chilli and lemongrass simply because I want to avoid mealy bugs in my garden.
I have also seen lizards licking the orchid buds like little kid enjoying lollipop, so cute ^_^/>/>

Greyfinger, if I use insect spray, my orchid will go to heaven together with those ants. Recently, I realised there are big red version, about 1 cm in length, residing in my bigger orchid pots. OMG! :(/>/> Luckily those mealy bugs are not crazy over my orchids.
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#11 User is offline   keff 

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Posted 27 October 2016 - 02:16 PM

View PostBusy Bee, on 27 October 2016 - 01:42 PM, said:

Keff, how do you get rid of mealy bugs? I tried spraying with diluted Mama Lemon as recommended by NEA guys but I ended up killing the whole plants :o/>/>/>/> I had to reluctantly give up planting chilli and lemongrass simply because I want to avoid mealy bugs in my garden.
I have also seen lizards licking the orchid buds like little kid enjoying lollipop, so cute ^_^/>/>/>/>

Greyfinger, if I use insect spray, my orchid will go to heaven together with those ants. Recently, I realised there are big red version, about 1 cm in length, residing in my bigger orchid pots. OMG! :(/>/>/>/> Luckily those mealy bugs are not crazy over my orchids.


If it is just a light infestation, I just use my fingers to squish them. Or maybe a toothpick for hard to reach areas. The key is repeated treatments, you may not be able to get all of them in one treatment.

Or if the infestation is bad, I use neem oil after squishing those I manage to reach. Usually one treatment is enough, but if kiasu I do it twice, a week apart.

Yes the little lizards hanging around the "honeydew bar" is very cute. They seem to be territorial and one lizard will stake its claim on one flowering spike. They made me so curious, I had to try tasting the honeydew, it is sweet. Have you tried it?

Btw, I also noticed that the honeydew is also produced in the new anak/keiki of the cattleyas.

This post has been edited by keff: 27 October 2016 - 02:20 PM

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#12 User is offline   Busy Bee 

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Posted 28 October 2016 - 10:05 AM

Thanks for your advice, Keff. Neem oil is the answer coz I am too lazy to remove them manually...

Hah! You are very tam chiak, fighting for lollies with geckos!! :hysterical:/>/> I am too kiasi to taste it in case I turn purple or black the next day :lol:/>/>

I also noticed that every pot has a dominant spider or lizard that live in the potting mix.
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#13 User is offline   keff 

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Posted 28 October 2016 - 12:56 PM

View PostBusy Bee, on 28 October 2016 - 10:05 AM, said:

Thanks for your advice, Keff. Neem oil is the answer coz I am too lazy to remove them manually...

Hah! You are very tam chiak, fighting for lollies with geckos!! :hysterical:/>/>/> I am too kiasi to taste it in case I turn purple or black the next day :lol:/>/>/>

I also noticed that every pot has a dominant spider or lizard that live in the potting mix.


Next time I will taste the mealybug and report to you whether it is sweet or not.
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#14 User is offline   Busy Bee 

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Posted 28 October 2016 - 01:51 PM

View Postkeff, on 28 October 2016 - 12:56 PM, said:

Next time I will taste the mealybug and report to you whether it is sweet or not.


Please spare the geckos...they are innocent :huh:/>/>
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#15 User is offline   Busy Bee 

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Posted 14 December 2016 - 10:59 AM

Can you spot the gecko clinging onto the flower buds? I got really close to it but it was not bothered at all :lol:/>/>

http://i1084.photobucket.com/albums/j419/SuLinLua/20161213_081649_zpsdtlwam3k.jpg
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#16 User is offline   keff 

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Posted 14 December 2016 - 11:53 AM

View PostBusy Bee, on 14 December 2016 - 10:59 AM, said:

Can you spot the gecko clinging onto the flower buds? I got really close to it but it was not bothered at all :lol:/>/>/>



Have you seen the geckos lick the nectar off the flower buds? Its super cute, like a giant lollypop.
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#17 User is offline   Busy Bee 

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Posted 14 December 2016 - 03:09 PM

Yap! They love to lick the flower stems too, like candy canes!

http://i1084.photobucket.com/albums/j419/SuLinLua/20161213_081810_zpsm1qlkcep.jpg
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#18 User is offline   Greyfingers 

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Posted 14 December 2016 - 09:21 PM

Ever wonder why these plants give out nectar?
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#19 User is offline   keff 

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Posted 15 December 2016 - 12:00 AM

I think it is a symbiotic defence mechanism.
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#20 User is offline   Busy Bee 

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Posted 20 December 2016 - 09:49 AM

View Postkeff, on 15 December 2016 - 12:00 AM, said:

I think it is a symbiotic defence mechanism.


Aiyo...so chim! In layman language, it attracts geckos which in turn can protect the plant? But it would also attract ants that can bring more pests along :unsure:/>/>
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