I have hundreds of these for the last couple of weeks/months in my orchids:

Close-up of bugs


I tried to get rid of them but since they hide in the pot, I can't wipe them out... I think they eat the bark and not the orchids since the orchids are doing well, I just don't like to see tiny bugs going all around (especially when I water the orchids, the bugs seems to flee the pot for a while).

Update (3 months later): I trashed the bark rinsed the orchids and sprayed with insecticide. It was ok until last week where I saw that they were back (in a lower count). Replacing the orchid medium for my all my orchids cost around 100$ I can't do that too often.

Is there a way to add something to the water that would be damaging to the bugs and not the orchids?

2 Answers 2


These are common soil springtails.


small, but could be mealybugs. You can kill em by swabbing the plant with rubbing alcohol. Let stand 5 minutes andc clean it off.

Also could be fungus gnats. The best strategy is to replant the orchids. Because they proliferate in Moist decaying soil, it's a sign your plant has a possible fungus problem. Replant the orchid in a new dry medium. Always let the soil dry before watering again. Orchids are largely epiphytes and get all their water by drip in nature...Some have bulbs to store it.

  • I don't think it's either as I never caught any on the orchids themselves they seem to prefer the bark (the orchid "soil") and I never saw any fly. But I think you are right and I should repot all.
    – AlexV
    Commented Oct 10, 2021 at 12:50

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