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European Red Mite PDF Print E-mail


European Red Mite (Panonychus ulmi)

Photographer: Whitney Cranshaw, Colorado State University Descriptor: Damage Description:   Stippling injuries to leaves Citation: Whitney Cranshaw, Colorado State University, Description:

European Red Mites are an indirect pest of apples and other deciduois plants. Adult females are dark red with silky hairs on their back bones. The male is slightly lighter, but they are fairly hard to distinguish. These pests are quite small (0.3-0.4mm) and are barely vivible to the naked eye. They are found on the underside of leaves and can be readily seen with the aid of a 10x hand lens (which is standard equipment for the orchard pest scout).

Photographer: University of Georgia Plant Pathology Archive, University of Georgia Contact: Holly Thornton, University of Georgia Descriptor: Egg(s) Citation: University of Georgia Plant Pathology Archive, University of Georgia, The eggs overwinter  in crevaces and cracks in the bark, so when using oil in the spring it is essential that you use planty of water in your mis and soak the trunk and limbs to a dripThey can begin to appear anytime after bloom and they will be seen first on the oldest and lowest full leaves on the tree. Look on the inside of the tree first, sample ten leaves or so per tree. If you see 10-20 mites per leaf you have a major infestation going on.


The mites feed on the underside of the leaves  and the leaves become speckled . As the populations increase the leaves turn bronze. Severe infestations will reduce fruit growth and cause fruit drop on some varieties. Fruit size will also diminish on affected trees.


Best recommend control is to use dormant oil at green tip to quarter inch green on the spring. Oil can be applied earlier, but it is more effective at green tip. Do not wait too long as oil applied to early leaves can be phytotxic.

See our Seasonal Work Calendar for more

Get more Identification help from our recommended Books and guides

Download Mite Sheet from Minn Dept of Ag  (PDF: 156 KB / 4 pages)


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