Identifying pests or diseases correctly is essential to finding the right protection product, and it’s important to nip them in the bud early to keep plants healthy.

Identify the pests

Infestations of insects are regarded as pests when their attack results in a yield loss to fruit, vegetable or aesthetics through damage to the plant. Less than 1 % of all insects are considered to be pests within South Africa. As with all gardening activities, pest and disease control are highly seasonal and vary across the diversity of our nine provinces. For accurate pest or disease identification, Efekto recommends that you take a sample to your local garden centre, where trained staff can help with region-specific queries and advise you on the best pest protection product.

The effectiveness of a protective insecticide is influenced by factors such as weather conditions, the plant surface and the plant’s growth stage. Control is usually achieved within one or two applications. The Efekto Pest Identification Guide offers a comprehensive list of the most common pests, weeds and diseases found in the home and garden, which you can find on the website: www.efekto.co.za

How do protection products work?

  • Contact protection products are effective when the pest, weed or disease comes into contact with the product. For best results, spray both top and bottom leaf surfaces until the point of run-off. Examples are Efekto Malasol and Efekto Eco Insect Control SC.
  • Systemic products are taken up through a plant’s vascular system. For the best results, apply systemic products onto the lower part of the plant. Examples are Efekto Aphicide and Efekto Insecticide Granules Plus (not suitable for edible crops).
American Bollworm

Description: Black to brownish-green with a dirty white strip along the sides.
Location: Feeds on fruit and leaves of fruit trees and other plants.
Protect with: Efekto Cypermethrin 200EC
Natural protection: Efekto Eco Insect Control SC.

Ants

Description: There are several different types of ants, all of which live in colonies, commonly in and around homes.
Location: Ant nests may occur in household or garden areas. Apply surface sprays indoors and in shaded garden areas. Effective control can be achieved by pouring pesticide down entrance to nest.
Protect with: Efekto Ant Dust, Efekto Ant, Efekto No Ant RTU, Efekto Ant Vanish, Efekto Antrap, Efekto Plant Protector, Efekto Cypermethrin 200 EC.

Aphids

Description: Small, soft-bodied, pear-shaped insects, usually green or black in colour.
Location: Commonly found in small colonies on leaves and new growth. Sap feeders, resulting in leaves that curl, and retarded growth.
Protect with: Efekto Aphicide, Efekto Malasol, Efekto Insecticide Granules Plus (not suitable for edible crops), Efekto Rosecare 3 (Also available in RTU), Efekto Plant Protector. Efekto Aphicide Plus, Efekto Oleum.

Army Worm

Description: Yellowish or brownishgreen with a tan or greenish-brown head mottled with darker brown. The smooth, hairless body is marked with three dark longitudinal stripes, one along each side and one down the back. A full-grown army worm is 30-35 mm long.
Location: Lawns, pastures and vegetables.
Protect with: Efekto Karbadust, Efekto Karbaspray, Efekto Malasol, Efekto Cypermethrin 200EC.

Astylus beetle

Description: Medium-sized yellow beetle with black spots.
Location: Damages blooms and prevents fruit or flower formation. Active during mid to late summer. Feeds mainly on pollen.
Protect with: Efekto Malasol.

Australian bug

Description: Soft, scaly insect with large egg sac of ribbed white wax.
Location: Found on growth points and leaf arteries. Sap feeding, resulting in retarded growth and eventual death of plant.
Protect with: Efekto Malasol, Efekto Cypermethrin 200EC, Efekto Oleum.

Chafer beetle (Christmas beetle)

Description: Medium-sized, shiny brown, night-flying beetle.
Location: Burrows into ground during daytime. Feeds on young leaves and flower petals.
Protect with: Efekto Karbadust, Efekto Karbaspray, Efekto Malasol.

CMR beetle

Description: Small to large beetle with yellow and black bands across wing covers.
Location: Feeds mainly on flower petals, adversely affecting flower and fruit formation.
Protect with: Efekto Malasol.

Cochineal

Description: Small pink insect, covered with a white waxy layer.
Location: Found on leaves of prickly pear plants. Sap feeding, causing leaves to wither and fall off.
Protect with: Efekto Karbaspray.

Codling moth

Description: Dark grey moth. Larvae are pink with a brown head at maturity.
Location: Eggs are laid on young fruit and leaves. Larvae burrow into fruit, causing rotten patches. Treat after approximately 75 % of the blossoms have dropped off.
Protect with: Efekto Karbaspray, Efekto Cypermethrin 200EC.

Crickets

Description: Dark grey to black in various sizes.
Location: Burrow into lawns, especially in shady areas where soil is damp. Feed on seedlings, roots and tubers. Results in bare patches in lawns.
Protect with: Efekto Karbadust, Efekto Malasol, Efekto Cypermethrin 200EC.

Cutworm

Description: Dirty-grey, hairless worms.
Location: Found in upper 2-5 cm of soil, especially among young plants. Cuts the stems of young plants just below soil surface (hence the name cutworm). Active at night.
Protect with: Efekto Cutworm Bait, Efekto Cypermethrin 200EC.

Fruit fly

Description: Medium-sized flies, usually brightly coloured.
Location: Lay eggs in fruit (sting). Infected fruits infested with white maggots.
Protect with: Efekto Malasol.
Natural protection: Efekto Eco Fruitfly Bait GF120, Efekto Cypermethrin 200EC.

Whitefly

Description: Small four-winged insects, covered in fine white powder.
Location: Commonly found on the underside of leaves. Swarm when disturbed. Sap feeding, resulting in retarded growth.
Protect with: Efekto Whitefly Insecticide Efekto Cypermethrin 200EC.

Grasshoppers

Description: Colour is usually a combination of brown, grey or green.
Location: They mostly feed on leaves, but also flowers, soft stems and seed.
Protect with: Efekto Karbadust, Efekto Karbaspray.

Harvester termites

Description: White or light brown termites, 10 mm long with dark brown head.
Location: Underground colonies. Deposit small mounds of loose soil around entrance to nests. Cut and harvest grass, carrying it into nests. Can ruin lawns and gardens.
Protect with: Efekto Kamikaze, Efekto Plant Protector, Efekto Cypermethrin 200EC.

Lawn caterpillar

Description: Greenish-brown caterpillar.
Location: Lives below the soil surface in lawn areas. Feeds on lawn blades, causing large yellow patches. Active at night.
Top Tip: Place a wet towel on lawn overnight and check the following morning.
Protect with: Efekto Karbadust, Efekto Karbaspray, Efekto Malasol, Wonder 4:1:1 (24) Granular Fertiliser + insecticide.
Natural protection: Efekto Eco Insect Control SC, Efekto Cypermethrin 200EC.

Leaf miner

Description: Larvae tunnel within the leaf tissue forming the characteristic mines, then cut a semi-circular opening in the tissue and drop to the soil to pupate.
Location: Found on some vegetables and ornamentals.
Natural protection: Efekto Eco Insect Control SC , Efekto Malasol.

Lily borer

Description: Larvae have distinctive yellow and black bands around the body.
Location: Larvae tunnel into the leaves (borer). Young feed in groups, adults move towards the base of leaves and may even feed on bulbs. Control between September and April.
Protect with: Efekto Cypermethrin 200EC
Natural protection: Efekto Eco Insect Control SC.

Loopers

Description: Green caterpillars identified by characteristic ‘looping’ of body.
Location: Found on all plants. Feeds on fruit and leaves of plants.
Protect with: Efekto Cypermethrin 200EC
Natural protection: Efekto Cypermethrin 200EC Efekto Eco Insect Control SC.

Mealy bug

Description: Small, oval-shaped, light pink stationary insects with white waxy thread.
Location: Found on tender new growth. Sap feeding, causing plants to wither.
Protect with: Efekto Aphicide, Efekto Malasol, Efekto Insecticide Granules Plus (not suitable for edible crops), Efekto Cypermethrin 200EC, Efekto Oleum.

Mole cricket

Description: Thick-bodied insects about 3-5 cm long, with large beady eyes and shovel-like forelimbs highly developed for burrowing and swimming.
Location: Found mostly in lawns.
Protect with: Efekto Plant Protector.

Pumpkin fly

Description: Similar to fruit flies.
Location: Attacks members of the pumpkin family. Eggs laid beneath the skin. Creamy white, legless maggots tunnel into fruit, causing it to rot and fall off.
Protect with: Efekto Malasol. Natural protection: Efekto Eco Fruitfly Bait GF120.

Red spider mite

Description: Tiny mite with red body. A fine web on the underside of leaves typically indicates that red spider mite is present.
Location: Found on the underside of leaves. Mites feed on sap, causing leaves to turn silver, grey and later brown in colour, resulting in rapid deterioration of the plant.
Protect with: Efekto Kumulus WG, Efekto Rosecare 3, Efekto Cypermethrin 200EC.
Natural protection: Efekto Eco Fungimite.

Scale

Description: May occur in a variety of colours including grey, white, reddish-brown or purple. It may be round or pear-shaped.
Location: Attached firmly to the bark, stems or leaves of plants. Sap feeding, causing growth retardation.
Protect with: Efekto Aphicide, Efekto Malasol, Efekto Lime Sulphur, Efekto Insecticide Granules Plus (not suitable for edible crops), Efekto Oleum.

Snails and slugs

Description: Brown or grey in colour. Snails carry a shell, slugs do not. Leave shiny trails.
Location: Active under damp conditions. Feed on young, succulent growth.
Protect with: Efekto Snailban, Efekto Snailban M, Efekto Snailflo, Sluggem.

Stalkborer

Description: Caterpillars are light or dark violet to pinkish-white in colour, often with a distinctive grey tinge. On hatching, caterpillars are blackish.
Location: Found in maize, sorghum and sweetcorn.
Protect with: Efekto Stalkborer Granules Plus, Efekto Cypermethrin 200EC.

Thrips

Description: Tiny, slender insects with four oar-like wings, fringed with long hair. Seldom seen with the naked eye.
Location: Damage foliage, fruit and flowers.
Protect with: Efekto Kumulus WG, Efekto Malasol, Efekto Rosecare 3, Efekto Insecticide Granules Plus (not suitable for edible crops).
Natural protection: Efekto Eco Insect Control SC.

What products to use against pests

Credits

Referenced from Efekto , Green Fingers : Your gardening and product guide from Efekto

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