Q: small white insects on kumquat tree. Do I have to worry?

I noticed that my kumquat tree has a bunch of small white insects on it. They fly when I pass by or shake the branches. So far the tree looks healthy.
Should I worry?
If it matters, I am in Santa Clara California.
Sam (My e-mail is spam-proofed, please post your responses here.)
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snipped-for-privacy@hotmail.com (S.V.Proff) wrote:

Sounds like white flies.
Kill 'em. They will spread.
K.
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On 3 May 2004 10:22:25 -0700 in
snipped-for-privacy@hotmail.com (S.V.Proff) graced the world with this thought:

whiteflies, a real pain in the ass because they fly away when you try to get 'em. They will eat the foliage and multiply like rats. One of the best ways I've found to get rid of them is to create as hostile an environment as you can for them. Spray the crap out of them with water. A relatively good, if not terribly fast, way to get rid of them is to paint a large flat disposable surface (like cardboard) yellow. When it dries, wipe a thin coat of vegetable oil on it. Hang them in the tree in various places. The whiteflies are attracted to yellow, and stick to the oil. Then just wipe them off. Another interesting one, if you can find it, is to spread shredded reflective material under the tree as mulch. This confuses them--they don't know what's up and what's down... and they just move on to your neighbors' trees. Works for aphids, too. I'd give OSH or Summer Winds a call, see what they may recommend.
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On 3 May 2004 10:22:25 -0700, snipped-for-privacy@hotmail.com (S.V.Proff) wrote:

Sounds like white fly, which aren't good. Could be winged aphids too, but they're not so easily stirred. You can try removing them with a strong stream of water to dislodge them and hopefully water log them and knock them off. However if this is an infestation, then that would be something that has many approaches depending on your personal feelings about pesticides. Safer insecticidal soap works on most soft bodied insects, but catch some put them in a small bottle and take them to your local county agricultural extension agency and the master gardener program there. Or to a garden shop that is more than home depot or lowes, an actual year round nursery where someone will know something.. for identification and what they recommend to rid the plant of them.
It's better for you and your tree for you to take the pest in for sure identification than for all of us guessing at what you have. I'm in Idaho, so I'd have no way of knowing what sort of pests you have in your milder climate, but a lot more than here I'd imagine since they don't get frozen each winter. :(
Let us know what it was!
Janice
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On Tue, 04 May 2004 20:25:16 -0600 in

things fly away. To me, when it comes to a pesticide, I prefer not to use anything, but if you have a major infestation, and it's not only going to affect you, but all your neighbors, you may as well either go ahead and use pesticides and throw away the fruit (if you're of that mind), or cut down/pull up the offending plant (I'd be hesitant with a tree)... if thine eye offend thee... because the whiteflies are more or less going to destroy your crop anyway if you don't get them under control. Does Safers make a bulk container or one that can be hooked up to a hose, do you know? I've never looked.
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snipped-for-privacy@roastbeef.net writes:

A couple of years ago, some came in on a fuschia basket. They spread very quickly and very completely. Fortunately, I got rid of them. It may have been the ladybugs I turned loose. Also, I leave some of the wasp nests alone near the garden. Perhaps one or the other ate them. It could also have been the birds which I encourage that could have gotten them. Whoever/whatever it was, they were gone after a few weeks. I still thank all that is good that they disappeared; I was very, very lucky!
Glenna

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snipped-for-privacy@pmug.org (Glenna Rose) wrote in message writes:

But will they affect the kumkuat?
Sam

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snipped-for-privacy@hotmail.com (S.V.Proff) wrote:

Whiteflies, almost certainly -- they make the underside of the leaves look "dusty" too. You can beat them off with plain water but they'll come back. Try insecticidal soap, or spray with a diluted mix of dish soap (not lemon-flavoured) and a little canola oil.

Yes, they can damage the leaves enough to stress the trees.
~REZ~
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