Hemiptera / Sternorrhyncha


What are Whiteflies?  

Small white winged sap-sucking flies that are not true flies. They resemble tiny white moths with a wingspan of 3mm. Whiteflies have become very prevalent in recent years and there are several different types which are major pests for home gardeners.

The Silverleaf Whitefly (Bemisia tabaci) and the Greenhouse Whitefly (Trialeurodes vaporariorium). If the plant is disturbed, a cloud of tiny insects fly out but they soon settle back onto the same plant. Both the adult and juvenile (nymph) whiteflies suck the juices from the plant.

Favoured plants are hibiscus, poinsettia, gerberas, herbs such as sage and mint, vegetable seedlings such as squash, melon, eggplant, cabbage and bean, tomato and broccoli.



Wilting and stunting of new shoots. Can cause silvering and yellowing of leaves (eg. squash) and uneven ripening of tomatoes and sometimes plant death. Sooty mould often accompanies large numbers of whiteflies as they excrete honeydew when feeding on plant tissue.


How to Protect your plants

White fly are best controlled using alternating sprays, as the insects can build up chemical resistance very quickly. Alternating insecticides help to prevent this from happening. Spraying is best done in the early morning or late afternoon when the insects are more restful.


Plants impacted

  • Hibiscus
  • Pointsettia
  • Gerberas
  • Sage
  • Mint
  • Squash
  • Melon
  • Eggplant
  • Cabbage
  • Bean
  • Tomato
  • Broccoli

Recommended products

Yates Rose Gun Spray - Ready to Use

A systemic fungicide and contact insecticide, kills pests and mites on contact and systemically works from within the plant to control common diseases.

More articles


Aphids are small, sap-sucking insects which can cause a lot of damage to your plants. They can be black, green, red-pink and translucent white and are often found grouped on new shoots and buds.

Sooty Mould

Sooty mould is a fungal disease which presents as a black powdery substance coating plant leaves, stems and twigs usually accompanied by a sticky residue.


If your plant is covered in what looks like little balls of sticky cotton wool along the stems and leaves, it's a good sign you have mealybug. Here's how to identify and control mealybug.


Ants do not damage plants directly but sometimes steal freshly sown seed from garden beds and seed boxes. Ants also feed on the sticky ‘honeydew’ substance produced by sap sucking insects such as aphids and scale, and encourage these insects by protecting them from predators.