How To Get Rid Of Spider Mites On Plants Naturally

Sharing is caring!

Are your plants’ leaves turning yellow regardless of how much you water or expose them to sunlight? This could be the work of spider mites. These minuscule arachnids can easily go unnoticed due to their size, but their impact is easily noticeable.

Spider Mites can wreak havoc on your beloved plants, sucking the life out of them with their piercing mouthparts. You could choose to combat these annoying creatures with chemical pesticides, but you risk negatively affecting the environment and even killing beneficial insects.

So, what’s the alternative? Natural ways to get rid of spider mites on your plants.

Signs Of Spider Mite Infested Plants

how to get rid of spider mites on plants

Since they are small, spider mites can go unnoticed for a long time, so knowing what to look for will help you detect their presence early.

Here are the signs of spider mites on plants

a) Fine Webbing

Spider mites often produce fine webbing, particularly on the leaves’ undersides. Spider mites use webbing as a physical barrier against predators.

b) Fine Silk Threads

In addition to webbing, you may notice fine silk threads on the plant, particularly in heavily infested areas. Spider mites produce threads for protection and dispersal.

c) Yellowing or Bronzing Leaves

The spider mites’ feeding activities can turn plant leaves yellow, bronze, or stippled. You will visibly notice this damage on the upper parts of the leaves. The yellowing of leaves can be diffused or concentrated around the feeding sites.

Read More:

Bronzing or browning occurs predominantly in the areas where spider mites are concentrated. This discoloration can stem from cell damage and reduced chlorophyll production.

d) Specks or Dots

Specks or dots, especially those accompanied by other signs such as webbing, yellowing or bronzing of leaves, and leaf damage on your plant leaves, can indicate the presence of spider mites.

The cause of these specks or dots is spider mite-feeding behavior that involves piercing the plant tissue and sucking out the cell contents.

e) Leaf Curling or Wilting

The leaves can curl, wilt, or become distorted in severe spider mite infestation. This damage is a response to the stress inflicted by the mites’ feeding activities and the toxins they inject into the plant tissue.

f) Visible Mites

If you closely examine the undersides of leaves, especially in the advanced infestation stage, you may be able to see the spider mites themselves moving around. They are usually tiny, and their color ranges from red or brown to yellow or green, depending on the species.

g) Premature Leaf Drop

A prolonged and severe spider mite infestation can cause the affected leaves to drop prematurely, leading to plant defoliation. This can significantly weaken the plant and affect its productivity and health.

Read More: How To Get Rid Of Fungus Gnats In Houseplants Naturally

Natural Ways To Get Rid Of Spider Mites On Plants

natural ways to get rid of spider mites on plants

1. Use Water Spray

Spider mites love warm, dry weather, making them particularly problematic in warm, arid climates or indoor environments with low humidity. So, make the environment less hospitable for spider mites by increasing the humidity around your plants through regular water spraying.

Another reason water works is that blasting spider mites with water can dislodge them from plant surfaces, causing them to fall to the ground and reducing their ability to feed and reproduce.

Consistency is critical for this method to be effective, so inspect your plants regularly and spray them at the first sign of infestation. You must repeat this treatment to ensure the spider mites, including their eggs, do not re-establish themselves on your plants.

To avoid making a mess, spray indoor plants in your bathtub or kitchen sink. Spray the affected plants directly, covering both the tops and undersides of leaves.

2. Apply Neem Oil

Apply neem oil to your plants to disrupt the hormonal balance of spider mites. This natural repellent inhibits these arachnids’ ability to feed, molt, and reproduce. Additionally, neem oil’s antifeedant properties cause them to stop feeding on treated plant tissues, further reducing damage.

Use cold-pressed or pure neem oil products without additional additives or synthetic chemicals because they are more effective and safer for plants and the environment.

Mix neem oil (1 to 2 tablespoons) with a gallon of water (a gallon) and add some liquid or insecticidal soap to make the neem oil solution, then thoroughly spray the affected plants. Apply neem oil in the evening or on cloudy days to maximize absorption and minimize leaf burn risk.

Other essential oils that effectively eliminate spider mites include peppermint oil, rosemary oil, and eucalyptus oil.

3. Apply Rubbing Alcohol

This potent solvent breaks down the spider mites’ outer waxy layer, dehydrating and killing them. When you apply rubbing alcohol directly to spider mites, it penetrates their exoskeleton, causing rapid desiccation and ultimately death.

Aside from working rapidly, rubbing alcohol evaporates quickly, so it doesn’t leave behind residue that could harm your plants. Mix equal parts water and rubbing alcohol in a spray bottle or use undiluted rubbing alcohol for a more concentrated solution, although this could be harsher on delicate plant tissues.

Prior to spraying your plants with rubbing alcohol, move them to a well-ventilated room or outdoors because this substance has a strong odor and can be irritating.

In addition, apply the treatment when the weather is cool. Excessive heat or direct sunlight can cause rubbing alcohol to evaporate too rapidly, reducing its effectiveness.

4. Try Predatory Insects

Every pest has predators, and spider mites have many natural enemies, including iconic ladybugs, predatory mites, lacewings, and assassin bugs. Predatory insects either prey directly on the mites or disrupt their life cycle, helping to keep their populations in check.

Buy containers of ladybugs, lacewing eggs, predatory mites, or assassin bug nymphs and release them onto your plants. Also, create an inviting environment for predatory insects by planting diverse flowering plants that provide nectar and pollen. These plants will attract and sustain populations of beneficial insects in your garden.

5. Use Insecticidal Soap

Insecticidal soap, a gentle, safe, and natural remedy, effectively gets rid of spider mites on plants without harming the environment, beneficial insects, or the plants themselves. It works by suffocating and dehydrating soft-bodied pests like spider mites upon contact.

The soap’s fatty acids disrupt the spider mites’ waxy outer layer, causing them to lose moisture rapidly and perish. The soap’s detergent properties also help to break down the protective coatings of spider mite eggs, preventing them from hatching and further infesting your plants.

Simple household ingredients are sufficient to make insecticidal soap. Here’s a simple procedure for making it.


  • 1 tablespoon of liquid dish soap (preferably a mild, organic option)
  • 1 quart of water


  • Mix the liquid dish soap with water in a clean container.
  • Stir the mixture gently to dissolve the soap thoroughly.

After preparing the insecticidal soap, generously spray the solution onto the affected plant surfaces when temperatures are cool to avoid the risk of leaf burn.

6. Garlic Spray

Multiple things make garlic a valuable tool against spider mites and other pests. First, the sulfur compounds in it act as natural insecticides, hence capable of repelling and killing various garden pests.

Secondly, garlic spray disrupts spider mites’ feeding and reproductive abilities, ultimately leading to their demise. Lastly, the strong garlic odor can deter pests from your plants. In that case, garlic is both a preventive and eradication measure against spider mites.

Follow this procedure to make garlic spray.


  • 10 cloves of garlic
  • 1 quart of water
  • Liquid dish soap (optional)


  • Peel and crush the garlic cloves.
  • Boil water in a saucepan, then set it aside.
  • Add the crushed garlic to the hot water and cover the saucepan for a minimum of 30 minutes.
  • Strain the garlic-infused water into a clean container, discarding the garlic solids.
  • Optionally, add liquid dish soap to the garlic-infused water to make sure the solution clings to plant surfaces.
  • Generously spray your plants with the garlic spray.

7. Prune The Affected Plants

This is a simple, effective fix for a small spider mite population limited to a couple of leaves. This targeted, strategic approach entails selectively removing heavily affected plant parts, such as leaves, stems, or branches, to improve plant health and appearance.

Prune the parts with visible spider mite damage, webbing, and eggs to disrupt the mites’ reproductive cycle and reduce their numbers. Keep in mind that pruning stresses plants, and some species respond better to it than others.

Take out the most severely affected areas first, then gradually proceed upwards through the plant. Once you finish removing the spider mite-infested plant parts, discard them far from your home to avoid re-infestation. Help your plants recover from pruning by providing ideal growing conditions.

Preventive Measures  For Spider Mites

Here are some preventive measures to help you keep spider mites at bay:

  • Regularly check your plants for any indications of spider mite infestation, particularly in dry, hot weather.
  • Remove debris and fallen leaves because they can host spider mites and eggs.
  • Quarantine and inspect new plants.
  • Regularly wipe your indoor plants to remove dust and dirt.


A healthy garden ecosystem coupled with eco-friendly, natural spider-mite elimination methods will translate into healthy, spider-mite-free plants. When spider mites strike, the goal is to save your plants, but if the plant is too far gone, remove it to rescue the rest.

Sharing is caring!