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Recently I started growing Chilly Plant from seeds. I started to see these black, white bugs along with shiny spots on leaves and under leaves. A lot of leaves started to fall.

Can anyone help me identify what are these and how to get rid of these bugs and infections?

Black and white bugs on Leaves:

Black and White bugs on Leaves

Plenty of them under leaves

Plenty of them under leaves

Water like shiny spots on leaves (I have not sprayed water since few days)

Water like Shiny spots on leaves

Note:

  1. I have already jet sprayed to clean the plant and leaves 3 weeks ago, after that bugs multiplied and shiny spots appeared.
  2. I live in India, growing these in my balcony
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Before you do anything else, quarantine this plant. You don't want other plants to be infected.

These bugs are most likely aphids, probably black bean aphids. The shiny stuff on the leaves is honeydew produced by them. These bugs are bad news for your plant. They suck sap from the plant, reproduce quickly and will take over your plant. without treatment the plant will probably die. The honeydew is a problem because mold can form on it and your plant can rot away.

So how to get rid of them? You have a few options:

  1. Manual remove them. Rinse the plant with water and try to wash them away. Place the plant in the shower or use a garden hose. Inspect the plant afterwards and manually squeeze any bugs that stayed behind.

  2. Get natural enemies to eat the bugs. In nature, larger insects (for example ladybugs, lacewings and soldier beetles) love eating aphids. I don't know which ones work best in India. You can buy these insects at some pet stores or in some specialized webshops. The benefit of positive bugs is that they find the aphids for you. Drawback is that they might fly away before finishing their job. Also, bugs are often expensive.

  3. Use a chemical detergent. You can find these products in any gardening store. Not all generic bug-sprays have effect on aphids so make sure the product you select works effectively against aphids. Since you are growing plants to eat, take extra care in selecting a product that is not harmful to people. When applying, make sure the substance touches all aphids. Only when an aphid touches the substance it dies.

Getting rid of such an aphid infection takes a long time. After removing them once you will have to check the plant regularly to ensure they don't come back.

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  • Great answer, Thank you, Can you please help by adding a few steps to take care once I clean them? I heard that neem oil + shampoo spray twice a month will be helpful in stopping Aphids. – Mani Deep Sep 11 '20 at 12:43
  • Yes, neem oil works well! Mix a tablespoon of neem oil with a few drops of dishsoap and soak the plant weekly to prevent them from returning. – Sijmen Sep 11 '20 at 13:04

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