We have an outdoor gardenia that has these little white bugs,
trapizodial in shape all over the leaves. The black residue will come
off if you scrape it . The new growth doesn't have the buga or the
residue. he residue comes off in pieces, lake paint that is no longer
adhering to the wood. Any help would be appreciated
I agree it sounds like whitefly, which are particularly fond of gardenias.
The black residue is sooty mold, a fungus which grows on the sticky
substance excreted by the insects. It is not harmful on its own, although a
heavy coating can interfer with photosynthesis. It washes off easily. Treat
for the whitefly and the mold will take care of itself. Repeated
applications of insecticidal soap are effective, as is neem oil.
pam - gardengal
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