Honeylocust Spider Mite

Platytetranychus multidigituli

Honeylocust spider mite, Platytetranychus multidigituli, is a warm season mite that causes a bronzing discoloration on honeylocust trees by feeding on the underside of the leaf surface. Drought stressed honeylocust are attacked most often. During mid summer, honeylocust spider mite populations build rapidly. Early leaf drop can occur in July and August with heavy infestations, which can lead to other insect and disease problems.

Download Honeylocust Spider Mite Fact Sheet

Treatment Strategy

Spider mites are attracted to trees that are stressed, so the most effective treatment strategy is to support tree health through good cultural practices (such as adequate watering and mulching), as well as helping the tree with its defense system using targeted miticides for honeylocust spider mite control.

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Honeylocust Spider Mite Treatment Option 1

Cultural Practices

Watering

Adequate water is a key factor in maintaining healthy trees. A slow, deep watering event once every few weeks during dry conditions will help maintain soil moisture levels and minimize the stress that invites spider mites.

Mulching

Mulch is very beneficial for all trees because it reduces competition with turf and moderates soil temperature and moisture levels. The addition of 3 inches of wood chips or shredded bark under the drip line can have a very beneficial effect by holding in moisture and promoting healthy fibrous roots.

Application Method – Cultural practices

DIY Equipment/Product Needed:

•  Soaker hose

•  Mulch

•  Rake and shovel

Honeylocust Spider Mite Treatment Option 2

Historically, a spray application of a miticide, such as Forbid was required to get an infestation of honeylocust spider mites under control. Forbid™ applications can be made just after bud break in the spring; however, treating large trees can be a challenge.  If other options are not available, Forbid™ offers a great level of protection, controlling all three stages of spider mites.

Application Method – Foliar spray

DIY Equipment/Product Needed:

•  Forbid

•  Hand pump sprayer with wand

•  Safety glasses

•  Gloves

Honeylocust Spider Mite Treatment Option 3

Historically, a spray application of a miticide, such as Lucid® was required to get an infestation of honeylocust spider mites under control. Lucid®  applications can be made just after bud break in the spring; however, treating large trees can be a challenge.  If other options are not available, Lucid®  offers a great level of protection, controlling adult and nymph stages of spider mites.

Application Method – Foliar spray

DIY Equipment/Product Needed:

•  Lucid®

•  Hand pump sprayer with wand

•  Safety glasses

•  Gloves

Honeylocust Spider Mite DIY Kit

Option 1

Application Method – Cultural practices

DIY Equipment/Product Needed:

•  Soaker hose

•  Mulch

•  Rake and shovel

Option 2

Application Method – Foliar spray

DIY Equipment/Product Needed:

•  Forbid

•  Hand pump sprayer with wand

•  Safety glasses

•  Gloves

Option 3

Application Method – Foliar spray

DIY Equipment/Product Needed:

•  Lucid®

•  Hand pump sprayer with wand

•  Safety glasses

•  Gloves

How Is It Spread?

Honeylocust spider mites have multiple generations per year. Adults lay eggs in early to mid spring. Eggs hatch at bud break on honeylocust, or when common lilacs are in bloom. Crawlers feed throughout the summer, maturing in as little as four days. As cooler temperatures develop, adult females overwinter in bark cracks.

Susceptible Trees

Honeylocust and black locust

Symptoms

• White to yellow stippling occurs on the upper leaf surface.

• Heavy infestations can cause browning of the foliage and early leaf drop in July and August.

• Mites can be seen on the underside of the leaflets when using a hand lens.

Lookalikes

Honeylocust plant bug

Related/Similar Problems

Honeylocust plant bug

Timing

Spring through summer

Urgency

Moderate

Risk of Spreading

Moderate

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