I'm a gardening noob and bought my very first small indoor tree less than one month ago.

It's a yucca elephantipes that looks very healthy: all the leaves are green and no insects/bite marks. I watered it for the first time this morning with 2 cups of water.

When checking on it this afternoon, I noticed that a lot of dead worms/larvae came out :( After examining around the tree, it looks like some are still alive and crawling around it in the earth.

Here's an image of the worms:

enter image description here

Does anyone know what they are and how I can remove them? I'm really scared of bugs and don't want them even if they're not harmful for the plant X_X

Thanks in advance for your help!

Also including an image of the Yucca to show it's looking normal...

enter image description here


3 Answers 3


I think they might be fungus gnat larvae, images lower down in this link,but ignore the rest of the information re fly traps, you're not at that stage


Whatever they are, I wouldn't want them in my potted houseplants either, so I'd consider returning it from whence it came and either exchanging (no guarantee a replacement won't have the same trouble) or getting the money back. Another option is to buy some new potting mix, take the plant outside, remove from the pot, stand it in a container full of water to get off as much of the soil as possible (without damaging the roots). While the plant is sitting in the water, take the opportunity to thoroughly scrub the pot and rinse off so that its completely clean. Remove your plant from the water, leaving the soil behind, inspect the roots to see that they're not harbouring any more larvae, then carefully repot into the new potting mix.

Alternatively, try a soil drench with nematodes which target fungus gnat larvae - the one in the link below claims to treat various invaders in the soil


Ongoing, fungus gnats much prefer damp soil, so allow the top inch or two of the soil in the pot to dry out before watering, then water well and ensure the pot drains freely and is not left standing in water in a tray or outer pot after 30 minutes.


I don't think these are fungus nats...much too big.....look at her picture. I have some yucca trunks in a bucket of water in my yard. I found some large worms living in them..appears to be white slimy worms with a tail that clump together and can live in the water but are coming out of the yuccas. I intend in finding out what these are and will post back here. Larvae worms like this are usually some type of moth. However I've never seen them in water. I have no idea 2hat they are. I am pro insects....(unless they are in my house). I'm pro organic gardening....but like to know the ecosystem and who is good and who is bad.


Update from comment:

It wasn't easy....but I found the answer. These are yucca weevils. (The larvae of them). The larvae bore holes and look like grubs. (Short, fat, white worms). They then turn into black beetles. Google yucca weevils. Apparently destroying the plant is the only cure. Eventually the plant will fail to thrive.

  • Rita, welcome and nice research! Please don’t use the comment area for persistent information, edit your post instead (you may have to register, but I recommend that anyway, much more fun). Comments are temporary and may be deleted any time. Take a moment for the tour and browsing through our help center, you will learn a lot about how the site works.
    – Stephie
    Jul 7, 2018 at 18:13




Sorry your going through this. It says the only way to cure Yucca is to not plant in soil for years, I would definitely return where I got it and maybe go somewhere else because they could all be infested where you got the Yucca from with the Yucca weevils. Best of Luck

  • Hi Victorias, when answering here adding some links may not be enough. Links don't always work so a good answer involves giving more detail. Can you add more?
    – kevinskio
    Mar 18, 2020 at 18:52

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