Monstera plants are rather fragile and suffer damage from thrips despite having a monstrous yet majestic appearance.
Tiny yet nasty thrips need immediate action as they threaten the life of your beloved Monstera plant.
Therefore, continue reading to learn thrips identification, treatments and proper preventive measures to keep Monstera thrip free.
Table of Contents Show
- How to Identify Thrips Infestation on Monstera?
- The Best Way to Treat Thrips on Monstera Leaves
- Tips to Prevent Thrips on Monstera Plant
- Wrapping Up…
How to Identify Thrips Infestation on Monstera?
Thrips are small flying insects that are white or brown with tubular-shaped bodies that are difficult to see.
They usually subsist underside the Monstera leaves but can also appear on top or stems.
Once the Monstera hosts thrip, the damage becomes more visually noticeable with time.
Firstly, thrips suck out all the sap out of the plant and make it favorable to lay more eggs on it.
Besides that, here are some signs of thrips damage in Monstera leaves.
- The leaf color begins to fade and turns yellow or brown due to nutrient deficiency.
- Black or brown spots appear on the top or underside of Monstera leaves.
- Wilting, drooping or curling Monstera leaves due to loss of turgor pressure.
- The premature dropping of papery, distorted Monstera leaves.
- Tiny white flies hover around Monstera leaves, stems and soil.
- At the top of the leaves, you might even see egg-like yellowish larvas.
Without prompt action, thrips can stunt plant growth and eventually kill the plant.
Thus, treat your Monstera as soon as you notice signs of thrips infestation.
The Best Way to Treat Thrips on Monstera Leaves
To treat the thrips problem once and for all, you must ensure to destroy them and their eggs.
If any batches of unhatched eggs are left on the Monstera, the thrips problem will come back sooner or later.
Remember to wear gloves, as thrips can bite you and cause an itchy sensation followed by rashes or dermal reactions.
Thoroughly wash the skin if they happen to bite with clean water and soap.
Now, let us get your Monstera thrips free, shall we?
1. Natural Homemade Insecticides
Apply neem oil during the morning or evening hours to the infected Monstera for optimal efficiency.
Afternoon hours can dry the spray quickly, even before they can work against pests.
Also, the application of neem oil can keep the Monstera plant safe from other pests as well.
That said, do not drench the plant in a soapy water solution. Just a light spray will do the work.
Aim for horticultural, insecticidal soaps. They have potassium fatty acid that dehydrates the thrips by destroying their outer shell.
2. Manually Picking Thrips
You can manually remove the thrips using a lint roller. All you need to do is gently roll a lint remover on the surface of infected Monstera leaves.
The tiny thrips get stuck on the roller, which you can dispose of somewhere safe.
Thus, aim to use a lint roller regularly to lower the thrips damage on Monstera but not as an ultimate resort.
3. Luring Thrips in Traps
Set a sticky trap of bright colors like yellow, blue and white strategically to lure thrips.
Similarly, you can prepare one at home using colorful paper and applying gluey sticky substances like honey or vaseline.
Place them near the Monstera plant and repeatedly change the traps for maximum efficacy.
4. Remove Damaged Foliage
To prevent and control further thrips damage, snip off infected Monstera leaves using sterilized pruners.
Also, the leaves with brown or yellow patches will not recover regardless of the treatment.
Thus, you can remove such damaged foliage to prevent energy loss. Remember to use gloves to avoid skin irritation from Monstera sap.
5. Natural Predators
Get green lacewings and ladybugs, the natural predators of thrips, to control and annihilate them.
Allow the ladybugs and lacewings to feast on thrips in the areas where the plant has been infested.
Otherwise, you can just let the plant be in the garden and let the bugs come naturally.
But this method is a slow one and does not guarantee a complete cure of thrips damage on Monstera plants.
6. Chemical/Organic Pesticides
Before spraying your pesticides, isolate your plant and keep it quarantined while it goes under treatment.
Do not take near other plants until your Monsteras are completely free from these pests.
Furthermore, apply isopropyl alcohol using a cotton swab for immediate results.
On the other hand, opt for diatomaceous earth as an organic pesticide to control and treat pests like thrips.
If there is a severe infestation, aim for chemical pesticides, which are more potent and more effective.
Lastly, if you do not have any hopes to keep your plants alive, propagation can be helpful to continue to sow another plant with the surviving leaves.
- Find a healthy Monstera stem with a node.
- Cut it right below the node with at least two inches long.
- Dip the cutting into a jar filled with water and rooting hormone.
- Ensure the plant leaves stay out of the water.
- Replace the water every four days.
Within 2 to 3 weeks, new roots shall sprout and once they grow over an inch, transplant them into a new pot.
Tips to Prevent Thrips on Monstera Plant
Here are some preventive measures to ensure no thrips damage on the Monstera plant.
- Do not add newly bought plants to your plant collection without proper inspection.
- Skim observe the neighbor plants if they are infected with thrips.
- Immediately isolate any plants that host thrips and proceed with proper treatment.
- Regularly clean the leaves with neem oil or soapy water solution to avoid thrip infestation.
- Maintain the humidity at around 60% and avoid consistently high humidity.
- Inspect the outdoor plants thoroughly while taking them indoors.
The intrusive thrips falter the legit aesthetic appeal of Monstera and can cause long-term damage.
Therefore, aim for regular inspection while providing Monstera with indirect bright light, 65-85°F temperature with 60% ideal humidity.