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How to Get Rid of Mealybugs on Cheese Plant

Updated: April 21, 2022

Cheese plants are a popular indoor plant, known for their large and glossy leaves. However, these plants can attract pests such as mealybugs, which can cause damage to the plant if left untreated. Mealybugs are small, white bugs that feed on the sap of the plant, creating a sticky residue that attracts other pests and can lead to fungal growth. In this article, we will explore how to get rid of mealybugs on cheese plants.

Identifying Mealybugs on Cheese Plant

Mealybugs are small white insects that look like cotton balls or tiny specks of dust. They typically congregate in areas where the leaves join the stem or along the underside of leaves. Look for clusters of white dots or a sticky residue on the plant’s surface. If you suspect mealybug infestation, inspect the plant closely to confirm.


The best way to deal with mealybugs is to prevent them from infesting your cheese plant in the first place. Here are some tips to keep your plant safe:

  • Inspect new plants: Before bringing a new plant into your home, carefully inspect it for signs of pests. Quarantine it in a separate area for a few weeks to ensure that it is pest-free.
  • Keep humidity levels low: Mealybugs thrive in humid conditions. Keep the humidity levels around your cheese plant low by using a dehumidifier or placing a tray of water-filled stones beneath the pot.
  • Clean leaves regularly: Wipe down your plant’s leaves regularly with a damp cloth to remove any dust or debris that may attract mealybugs.
  • Avoid over-fertilizing: Fertilizer can attract mealybugs. Use fertilizer sparingly and only as directed.


If you notice mealybugs on your cheese plant, it’s important to act quickly to prevent further damage. Here are some effective methods to get rid of mealybugs:

1. Manual Removal

The easiest way to remove mealybugs is by hand. Use a cotton swab or a soft brush dipped in rubbing alcohol to gently wipe away the bugs and their eggs. Be sure to dispose of the swab or brush after each use to prevent the spread of pests.

2. Insecticidal Soap

Insecticidal soap is a natural and effective way to get rid of mealybugs. It works by suffocating the bugs and their eggs. Mix one tablespoon of insecticidal soap with one quart of water and spray the solution onto the plant, making sure to cover all areas where mealybugs are present.

3. Neem Oil

Neem oil is another natural pesticide that can be used against mealybugs. Mix one tablespoon of neem oil with one quart of water and spray the solution onto your cheese plant. Repeat the process every two weeks until the infestation is under control.

4. Commercial Insecticides

If all else fails, you may need to resort to commercial insecticides. Look for products that specifically target mealybugs and follow the instructions carefully. Be sure to wear protective clothing and keep pets and children away from the treated area.


Can mealybugs harm humans?

Mealybugs do not pose a direct threat to humans, but they can cause allergic reactions in some people.

Can mealybugs kill my cheese plant?

Mealybugs can cause damage to your cheese plant if left untreated, but they are not likely to kill the plant unless it is heavily infested.

Can I prevent mealybugs from coming back?

Yes, regular maintenance and inspection can help prevent mealybug infestations. Keep humidity levels low, wipe down leaves regularly, and inspect new plants before bringing them into your home.

In conclusion, mealybugs can be a nuisance for cheese plant owners, but with the right treatment and prevention methods, you can keep your plant healthy and pest-free. Regular maintenance and inspection are key to keeping mealybugs at bay. If you suspect mealybug infestation on your cheese plant, act quickly to prevent further damage.