HOW TO DEAL WITH COMMON CANNABIS PLANT PATHOGENS: SPIDER MITES

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We’ve already taken a look at some of the fungal threats which can encroach on your precious plants. In this article, we examine a different kind of headache – Spider Mites. Spider Mites (Arachnid Tetranychus Urticae) What are they? Spider mites are tiny terrorists who lurk in the foliage of your crops, wreaking havoc as they chew their way through the leaves. As if that wasn’t bad enough, these pests lay eggs in the leaves, meaning they can ultimately grow their own backup. Spider mites tend to be more common in soil grows than in hydroponic setups, but can appear anywhere Cannabis is being cultivated. What do they look like? Here’s the problem – they’re absolutely tiny. It wouldn’t be a bad idea to invest in a magnifying glass or a hand-held microscope as part of your troubleshooting toolkit, because if you want to catch these troublemakers early, you’re going to have to turn sleuth. Unfortunately, it’s far easier to spot the handiwork than it is to spot the culprit, and by the time the symptoms show, you’re playing catchup. The mites themselves have oval bodies, four pairs of legs, and no antennae, but they’re far too small to see such detail with the naked eye. When carrying out your regular inspections, look for tiny speckles on the leaves which appear similar to pinpricks, only typically yellow, orange or white in colour – these are actually bite marks, and are one of the earliest signs of invasion. Spider mites often hang out on the underside of the leaves, and so inspection will have to be extremely thorough. Often, the first sign of spider mites is a ghostly-white webbing which gives a haunted appearance to the leaves and buds. This webbing is spun by the mites to protect themselves from the…

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