Rent Shop Volunteer Join

Q. Who is Mr. Smarty Plants?

A: There are those who suspect Wildflower Center volunteers are the culpable and capable culprits. Yet, others think staff members play some, albeit small, role. You can torture us with your plant questions, but we will never reveal the Green Guru's secret identity.

Help us grow by giving to the Plant Database Fund or by becoming a member

Did you know you can access the Native Plant Information Network with your web-enabled smartphone?

Share

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants is a free service provided by the staff and volunteers at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

Search Smarty Plants
See a list of all Smarty Plants questions

Please forgive us, but Mr. Smarty Plants has been overwhelmed by a flood of mail and must take a break for awhile to catch up. We hope to be accepting new questions again soon. Thank you!

Need help with plant identification, visit the plant identification page.

 
rate this answer
Not Yet Rated

Sunday - July 10, 2005

From: Round Rock, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Pests, Shrubs
Title: Controlling scale insects on hollies
Answered by: Nan Hampton and Joe Marcus

QUESTION:

I have a number of holly shrubs at the side of my house. Recently I noticed that they have tiny white spots on them. I looked at several native Texas gardening books, but can't find what I need to treat to clear these. I can temporarily remove by rubbing each leaf.

ANSWER:

It sounds as if you have scale insects. It could be Holly pit scale, Japanese wax scale, tea scale or some other scale. You can read about these scale insects and more on the Virginia Cooperative Extension page. You can remove the scale insects by wiping the leaves with a cloth soaked in insecticidal soap (available at most nurseries). Rinse the leaves thoroughly after you have wiped the leaves. You can also read more about How to Control Scale Insects on Outdoor Plants.

 

More Pests Questions

Dry browning leaves on Monterrey Oak from San Antonio
August 08, 2013 - I have a Monterey Oak that was planted four years ago and was doing great until the last two weeks. It has turned brown and the ends of the branches are very dry and brittle. The root flare was cov...
view the full question and answer

Snail and slug management in Austin
May 27, 2007 - How can you get rid of large snails in the Austin, TX garden?
view the full question and answer

Pests on American Beautyberry from Austin
June 25, 2012 - Something is eating the leaves of my American Beautyberry shrubs. One is almost stripped of leaves on the upper branches. I have looked and can't see any insects or caterpillars. I have also looke...
view the full question and answer

Falling Balls from an Oak in Kingsland TX
May 25, 2015 - I have a large Live Oak in the back yard, with St. Augustine grass under it. It is April 3, 2015. The leaves have fallen and now little tiny round balls are falling. I am hearing a popping noise und...
view the full question and answer

Eliminating muskrats from a cottage garden in Ontario
August 22, 2010 - We have perennial gardens at our cottage and for the first time this year the muskrats have come and leveled everything..shasta daisies, coneflowers, day lilies, phlox, etc. Any suggestions as to how...
view the full question and answer

Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.