White spots on money tree leaves

White Spots On Jade Leaves: How To Get Rid Of White Spots On Jade Plants

Jade plants are a classic houseplant, especially for the neglectful home owner. They prefer bright light and occasional water in the warm season, but other than that the plants are fairly self-sufficient. In good conditions, you may still find white spots on jade leaves; but if the plant’s overall health is good, you should not worry too much. What causes white spots on jade? It may be a natural phenomenon or a bit of a fungal disease, but either way, there are easy methods to define and deal with the problem.

What Causes White Spots on Jade?

The few times I have discovered white spots on my jade plant, I simply rubbed them off lightly and the plant was no worse for wear. The actual cause of the white spots on jade leaves might be powdery mildew, or even a condition where the plant stores salts and “sweats” the excess out through its leaves. One cause has a quick fix and the other requires some cultural adjustment and treatment. Both are really not all that harmful to your plant and learning how to get rid of white spots on jade plants is a matter of some quick steps.

Powdery mildew

Most gardeners are familiar with powdery mildew. It occurs when there is low light, improper circulation, cooler temperatures and excess humidity. Overhead watering leaves foliage damp, which in winter months tends to stay moist for a long period. This promotes the formation of fungal spores that cause powdery mildew.

Avoid overhead watering and use a fan to increase circulation. Pinch off affected foliage and discard it. A solution of baking soda and vinegar is how to get rid of white spots on jade plants with powdery mildew. Spray on the leaves but ensure the leaves dry within a few hours.

Overhead watering may also leave hard water spots on leaves.

Excess salts

All plants uptake water through their roots with a few rare exceptions. Jade plants store water in their fleshy leaves, which makes them ideal species in arid zones. They capture infrequent rainwater and store it until they need it much like a squirrel hoarding nuts. This gives the leaves their plump appearance.

Rain and ground water alike capture salt from the air and soil. When you water with a salty solution, the trapped moisture will go through the leaves during transpiration and the evaporated moisture will leave a salt residue on the leaf. Therefore, your jade plant has white spots on the surface of the pads. A soft, lightly moist cloth can wipe these away easily and restore the appearance of the foliage.

Other Reasons for White Spots on My Jade Plant

Jade plants often get a condition called Oedema, where the roots take up water faster than the plant can use it. This causes corky blisters to form on the foliage. Reducing water should prevent the condition, but the blisters will remain.

Rarely, you may find a jade plant has white spots which are actually insects. Mealybugs have a whitish silver fuzzy exterior. If your white spots are moving under close observation, take action and seclude the jade from other plants.

The spots may also be a variety of scale with silvery bodies. Both can be conquered with a systemic insecticide formulated for houseplants or by dabbing them with a 70 percent solution of rubbing alcohol.

Jades are not usually prone to insect infestations, but if you put the plant outdoors for the summer, take a good look at it before bringing it indoors and infecting your other flora.

Jade plant, Variegated – Powdery mildew

Note: On succulents, Powdery Mildew symptoms are not characteristic.

Powdery mildews are one of the most common diseases of ornamental plants;many nursery, flower, and woody plants are susceptible. Greenhouse crops prone to infection include African violet, Begonia , Dahlia ,gerbera daisy, Hydrangea , roses, Verbena, Kalanchoe, andpoinsettia. Herbaceous perennials particularly susceptible to Powdery mildew include Aster, Centaurea, Coreopsis, Delphinium, Monarda, Phlox,Rudebeckia, and Sedum.

The disease is easily recognizable as a white to gray powdery growth on leaves and sometimes stems and flowers. Powdery mildew may have little or no affect on the plant (other than aesthetic) or it may cause infected leaves to distort, discolor, wither, and defoliate prematurely. Most Powdery mildews have evolved to avoid killing their hosts because they can only survive in living plant tissue. Symptoms and their severity depend upon the cultivar or species of host plant, the powdery mildew species, environmental conditions, and the age of plant tissue when it first became infected.

Monitor crops on a regular basis for Powdery mildew diseases. Epidemics that seem to develop overnight are often the result of undetected low level infections that have spread spores throughout the greenhouse. Rogue infected plants or prune out diseased tissue. Perform this operation when plants are wet or immediately place diseased material into a plastic bag to prevent spores from spreading. The use of resistant cultivars or species is a good management tactic. Although few ornamental crops have been bred for resistance, cultivars of African violet, Begonia, rose, pansy, Zinnia, Monarda, and Phlox with resistance are available. Avoid overcrowding of plants and provide good air movement. Keep relative humidity levels low in the greenhouse by a combination of heating and venting in late afternoon and early morning. Clean greenhouse thoroughly between crops, eliminating all weed hosts and volunteer plants. Unlike most fungi, powdery mildews only colonize the surface of plants making chemical eradication possible. Fungicides with the active ingredients propiconazole (Banner Maxx), myclobutanil (Eagle, Systhane),triadimefon (Bayleton, Strike), fenarimol (Rubigan), thiophanate methyl(Cleary’s 3336), potassium bicarbonate (Armicarb, MilStop), or sulfur are registered for Powdery mildew control on ornamentals. Sulfur may cause plant injury if applied when temperatures are high (greater than 85° F). Because the genera and species of fungi causing Powdery mildews are diverse, there may be some variation in fungicide effectiveness across crops. The Powdery mildew fungi can develop resistance to any of the fungicides, except sulfur, listed above so be sure to alternate fungicide applications among chemical classes.

Fact Sheet: Powdery Mildew Diseases on Ornamental Plants

Jade plant

Dropping leaves are normal as plants are brought indoors and adjust to indoor light levels. It sounds like this is the situation with your plant’s “occasional” leaf drop.
However, Jade plant can get powdery mildew. (Botrytis is also a possibility but less likely.) Both are fungal diseases, and both are associated with humidity or lack of air circulation.
Once a leaf is infected, it cannot be cured. Pick off infected leaves and dispose of them. If possibly, move the plant to a location where it gets better air circulation and light (for stronger regrowth and faster drying.) Alternatively, move other objects around the plant that may be blocking air movement and light.
Avoid wetting leaves when you water the plant. Jade plants need very little water in the winter. Their soil can be almost bone dry for long stretches with no ill effects.
Fungicides do not cure infection. They only work as a preventative. Once you see the white or gray “fuzz” of a fungal infection, you are seeing the mature state of the fungus and the fungus is sporulating, i.e. sending out spores which will start new infections if they land in the right conditions. So, the trick is to change the conditions of your jade plant. First, pull off infected leaves to lessen the amount of spores in the area, and then make sure your plant gets good air circulation and light so that the spores cannot find the right conditions to start growing.

White Fuzz On Jade Plants – Knowledgebase Question

Jade Plant (Crassula ovata)
Posted by plantladylin
Your jade plant may be infested with mealy bugs (these are white and will hop if you try to catch them; tag them with a cotton swab dipped in rubbing alcohol to eliminate the problem) or, since you haven’t seen any insects, it may be suffering from either a fungus or poor cultural conditions. These plants are also sensitive to some sprays, so always be sure anything you use on it is labeled specifically for use on jade plants.
First off, both these plants will tolerate low light but really do best in very bright light. Too little light can stress a plant and cause it to grow weak and spindly and drop foliage.
Next, it should be grown in a well drained potting mix, keeping it on the dry side — overwatering can cause root rot and a multitude of problems including leaf drop. Do not overfertilize as this can cause weak growth as well; fertilizing really isn’t necessary during winter when the growth rate slows naturally due to reduced light.
Finally, these plants do well in cool to average household temperatures, so make sure they are not overheated or in a warm draft from, say, a heat vent or the wood stove. They also do well with cooler temperatures at night, even a by a drop of as much as ten degrees. I would gently wipe away the white fuzz with a clean cloth and remove any fallen leaves promptly.
Place the plants in a brighter light in a location with good air circulation. The air circulation is important if it is a fungal infection — the dark spots on the second plant could well also be a fungal problem. Allow them to dry out between waterings, avoid wetting the foliage, and do not fertilize until they come into active growth in the spring. (Overly succulent growth is also more susceptible to fungal and pest problems.)

White spots on fan leaves?!

White spots on fan leaves

Have you noticed white spots on your fan leaves or stems? Leaves with white spots that look like small round patches of powdered sugar?
I have bad news for you, this isn’t fairy dust left behind from your guardian weed angel, this is the sign of either a fungal disease or an aphid/spider mite infestation – but don’t panic.
If you haven’t seen bugs and your an indoor grower it’s most likely just White Powdery Mildew which is actually pretty common! and easy to fix if done quick enough.

As mentioned above, if you’re growing indoors, in a clean environment, what’s covering your leaves is most likely White Powdery Mildew, unless you are growing outdoors, the white dusting could be a sign of other problems such as Spider Mites, which love to lay eggs on the leaves, looking very similar to WPM at first glance, left untreated both can and will devastate crops.
I’ll explain how you can tell the difference between WPM and spider mites, how WPM is caused and how to get rid of it successfully.

What Is White Powdery Mildew?(WPM)

White powdery mildew is a fungal disease that only exists to eat, reproduce and live another day. WPM is quite literally a mold, that grows and leeches from the nutrients in your plants and will eventually cripple the plant if not stopped.
Often occurring due to poor air circulation and high humidity levels, the fungus develops a strong ecosystem within the humidity and shade of the canopy but it can be easily fixed if you catch it early enough – left untreated, WPM can turn into a catastrophe and ruin an entire crop.

How to identify WPM?

  • Plants infected with mildew look as if they have been dusted with flour/sugar.
  • Powdery mildew typically starts off as circular, powdery white spots.
  • WPM typically covers the upper part of the leaves, however, might grow on the underside of the leaves.
  • The lower leaves are usually affected first, giving the impression that a sudden outburst has bloomed overnight when it fact the fungus would have been “setting up shop” the whole time. The most affected leaves tend to be towards the bottom of the plant.
  • Leaves can also twist, dry and break.

High humidity is the main cause of WPM

How to control & eliminate WPM?

The main cause of WPM is high humidity – usually as a result of poor air circulation, cannabis plants require a RH level of 40 – 60% with air circulation, remove the air and you can be guaranteed that WPM will colonise.
Start by closely inspecting each individual plant and carefully remove any affected leaves, be careful to not let infected leaves come into contact with unaffected leaves, dispose of all infected leaves separately to be burnt, seriously – burn them.
Once you are confident that you have removed all infected leaves, I would also recommend that you remove the first 1 – 2 inches of soil as it’s likely that spores have fallen into the soil and replace it with new, clean soil.
Now you will need to treat your plants with a natural fungicide to kill the remaining spores and stop it from coming back again.
Natural Fungicides for WPM:
Fungicides can be easily made at home by filling with the help of a hand pump sprayer, a few popular solutions involve:

  • Milk (1:9 ratio of milk to water)
  • Baking soda (2 tablespoons per gallon of water)
  • Neem Oil* (4 teaspoons per gallon of water)
  • Hydrogen Peroxide (1 teaspoon per gallon of 35% H202)
  • Growers Trust Powdery Mildew Remover

*Add a drop of washing up liquid to prevent the oil from separating with the water inside the handpump, otherwise, the oil will spray out at a full concentration as a result of sitting on top of the water.

Apply a heavy foliar spray at night time before the lights go off to both the top and underside of the leaves, repeating this process daily. It’s important to wait until the lights are due to go off because the water droplets can be magnified under the intense lights and burn your leaves.
Try to not spray too much of the fungicide solution onto the mature buds because they are oils and can stick around for a while,

Disease Resistant Strains

If your growing environment is susceptible to mold or other diseases, did you know there are mould-resistant cannabis strains that exist?


What Is White Spots On Cannabis And How To Fix ” Thrips “

Thrips are small, fast-moving insects and can come in many forms, from pale wormy looking things to dark winged insects, depending on the stage of life and where you live.

They pierce cannabis leaves with their mouths and suck out all the good stuff, leaving shiny (sometimes people thing it looks slimy), silver or bronze spots wherever the leaves were bitten. The spots are bigger and more irregularly shaped than the bites left from spider mites. If it goes on too long the affected leaves may start dying.

Although it doesn’t really look like it in pictures, in real life thrip damage has been described as looking like “dried spit” or tiny snail trails.

(thrip leaf damage pics by theMallacht)

Here’s a picture of an adult thrip on a finger for scale – they’re tiny!

They can appear dark colored like the ones above, but also yellow, transparent or golden

They can appear with or without wings, depending on their stage of life

In their “nymph” (juvenile) form, thrips appear pale, fat and almost wormy from afar

A closeup of another baby thrip in “nymph” form

A Thrip nymph on a cannabis leaf – I hope this helps show you how tiny they are.

A thrip nymph looks tubular and worm-like, unlike an aphid nymph which looks like a tiny white bug

Proven Thrip Remedies

1.) Insecticidal soap

Fatty acid salts or insecticidal soaps can be a good choice against thrips. They weaken the outer shell of thrips but are safe to use on your plants and they don’t leave much of a residue.

With soaps, coverage is very important as it does not stay on your plant for long, so follow-up applications may be necessary. Although this is considered safe, avoid getting any on your buds!

2.) ​Neem Oil

Neem Oil will leave an unpleasant taste/smell on buds when used to treat flowering plants, so don’t let this stuff get near your buds! There’s also some evidence Neem oil may be harmful to humans so use with care! That being said, Neem oil is an all-natural remedy that is very effective against many different types of bugs and mold. You will need a mister (also called a “One-Hand Pressure Sprayer”) to spray all the leaves evenly, since neem oil and water can separate easily.

3.) Spinosad Products

Spinosad products are organic and unlike many other thrip pesticides, completely harmless to pets, children, and plants. Unlike many insecticides, you can spray spinosad heavily on leaves and roots with basically no negative effects. Spinosad products can be used directly to kill thrips on contact, but can also be used when watering plants to systematically kill thrips via the roots. Spinosad is also effective at fighting caterpillers, spider mites, and many other marijuana pests.

Can be used both as a topical spray, and can also be used directly at the roots. Spinosad is an organic insecticide made from the fermentation of a specific soil bacteria (actinomycete Saccharopolyspora spinosa) and kills thrips via ingestion or contact by effecting the insect nervous system. Spinosad can be a good choice for organic and outdoor growers, because it is very toxic to thips, but is less toxic to many beneficial insects.

Note: Most spinosad products are effective for only about 24 hours after being mixed with water, so only mix as much as you will need per application. Anything left over will be waste.​​

4.) Pyrethrins

Pyrethrin based insecticides are not very toxic for humans and degrade quickly, which is why they’re commonly recommended for vegetable gardens. You will need a mister (also called a “One-Hand Pressure Sprayer”) to spray all the leaves evenly.

Pyrethrin products break down quickly, over the course of just a day or two. The major problem with them is they are very toxic to bees. Although cannabis plants generally don’t attract a lot of bees, please use this as a last resort, and also try to use it right after the sun goes down because bees sleep at night. This lets it start to break down before they wake up.

Whiteflies, caterpillars, aphids … if you are a cannabis grower you’ve probably heard about these insects more than once, and not good things. There are many pests that can endanger your crops. To deal with them the best approach is prevention, being aware of the symptoms and, above all, knowing how to eradicate them in time. With our tips you’ll be able to identify all of them with ease and tackle them.

Leaf miner

This is perhaps the most selective pest, as it does not attack all strains of cannabis in the same way. About two weeks after depositing eggs inside the leaves, the larvae begin to “dig” tunnels: this is the first visible sign that you must take action against them.


Brown lines that can be seen on the leaves when the larvae are making their peculiar tunnels, or mines, eating the plant material in their path. It is also possible to find small holes made by adult flies.


It is unlikely to appear indoors, but if the leaf is not greatly damaged you can follow its path and remove the larva with your nails (it is “trapped” within the leaf). Outdoors you can choose insecticides, such as Spinosad, which should be used cautiously and only when there are no bees nearby. To get rid of adult specimens, which can continue laying eggs, there’s nothing like some adhesive strips around the crop to catch them.

Red spider mites

This tiny insect, which usually occurs where humidity levels are high and on indoor plants, sucks the sap from the leaves and kills the cannabis plant in a short period of time: an adult spider can take a million nibbles in less than a month. If there are several of them, in one night they can wipe out an entire plantation.

White spots on leaves are the mark left by the red spider mite when it sucks the sap. You might also see black or yellow spots on both sides. Sometimes they are overlooked, and can be confused with a lack of nutrients. Some people confuse them, measuring just a few mm and ranging from brown to an orange red, with spots, so it is a good idea to use a magnifying glass. At times they also leave a kind of cloth on the leaves.

Your growing space should be well cleaned and ventilated. The red spider mite thrives in dry areas and reproduces very quickly if the temperature exceeds 27 degrees. Therefore, keep the temperature below 25 degrees, and relative humidity at 55-60%. Once the plants or leaves affected are detected they can be cleaned with a mixture of alcohol and water, applied with an atomiser, and with the water constituting at least 40% of the liquid, to avoid damaging the leaves.

On the market there are different products to combat red spider mites. Neem oil, potassium soap and pyrethrum oil are very good choices. Another option is Ecotenona, diluting 2 ml of it per litre of water: it is applied on the leaves to penetrate the nervous system of the spider mite when it feeds. If you’re not sure if the eggs or adults have survived, you’ll need to use a different product.


Caterpillars need vegetation to form their chrysalis, so they can ruin your plantation in the blink of an eye, as they eat at a prodigious rate. Thus, when caterpillars appear on your cannabis plants it is important to act as soon as possible.

If you spot some very small eggs, yellow or translucent in appearance (especially on the back), and some tiny black droppings on your leaves, beware, as these are two of the clearest signs. You might also see teeth marks on your leaves. And you can even find rotten buds, as caterpillars are able to penetrate inside.

Once detected, caterpillars can be removed by hand. The ideal approach is to combine this with an insecticide made from an infusion of pepper and garlic. Another option is to introduce wasps of the genus Trichogramma (widely used to control pests), the spined soldier bug (Podisus maculiventris), or a biological treatment containing Bacillus thuringiensis. When the plant begins to dry it must be turned over and thoroughly checked to verify that there is nothing left, as the pupae could stay in the room and return to attack the next crop.

A real headache, especially if the plants are from cuttings. This tiny insect is very fast, so you must act quickly to prevent it from doing damage. Occasionally spraying with Neem oil or potassium soap can be preventive, but if they are already wreaking havoc you will have to get down to work.

Using yellow sticky strips around your crop is a good way to know if there is a thrips plague, some are bound to get stuck to it. You’ll also know you have it if you see silver markings on the surface of the leaves, sometimes accompanied by dots, which are droppings. Another sign is brittle leaves, as the thrips suck the chlorophyll until they are stuffed.

Again, spraying with potassium soap or Neem oil will be useful to eradicate this pest, as long as the flowering process has not yet begun. If it has, you had better include predators, such as wasps or orius (insidious flower bug). These species are not affected by the Verticillium lecanii fungus that anti-thrips biological control products often contain, so they can be combined.


The whitefly, another old nemesis of cannabis cultivators, sucks the sap from the leaves to weaken the plants. It is very common, but it is not among the most lethal.

The first symptom is very clear: if you shake the plants and see flies flying off it, you’ve got them. You can also see how your leaves are yellowed by chlorosis due to their sucking of the saps, the honeydew that these insects secrete, or even a white powder on the underside of the leaves.

Once these pests are discovered (there are preventive methods, such as planting repellent crops, like basil), you can use the Encarsia formosa wasp or Macrolophus caliginosus (a kind of stink bug). Another option is to attract flies with yellow strips, or spray with Neem oil or potassium soap; these solutions must be applied every five or six days until the flies are eradicated.

Another very fast-spreading plague, both in terms of reproduction (30 to 100 larvae per day) and their capacity to jump from one plant to another. Like the red spider mite, they feed on the leaf sap. More prevalent in the spring, time is of the essence once detected.

Dry, yellow leaves, colonies under leaves or stems, and a kind of honeydew that they secrete are some of the symptoms that should sound all the alarm bells. As if this were not enough, the honeydew attracts ants, such that they are a warning sign too.

In addition to changing clothes before entering your cultivation area, to keep from bringing in aphids from outside, once this pest is detected there are several options: they can be removed manually, or by crushing them, as they hardly move. You can also introduce predators like lacewing larvae, which feed on them. Release about 20 per plant and repeat each month. Other options are the parasitic wasp, ladybugs (for outdoor crops) or the Verticillium lecanii fungus. Finally, you can spray the plants with pyrethrum two or three times, with breaks of five to ten days.

Ironically, too much fertiliser can cause the appearance of aphids, so you need to use them carefully. A close eye must also be kept on growing conditions, as a dry area favours its spread. And when decaying leaves are detected they must be removed.


And we finish with another plague that will ring a bell even with those who do not cultivate cannabis: cochineal. Both indoors and outdoors, it can act silently. Even worse: they are small (therefore, difficult to detect) and resistant to some insecticides. If they reach the roots of your plants, the problem is serious. Not to mention their droppings, which contain a fungus that destroys plant material.

You’ll recognise them by their white or brown colour and a kind of white fluff. They begin to appear on the stems before spreading all over the plant. If there are plants nearby like cacti, roses or olive trees, you must be extremely careful. And, as with the aphid, ants are another indication of their presence.

Plants must be checked, both cannabis and others nearby, to make sure that there is no plague. Once detected they can be easily removed by applying a 50% mixture of alcohol and water, and tapping the leaves with cotton balls. If any part of the plant is badly damaged, it is best to remove it.

Fungus Gnats

This insect, whose scientific name is Sciridae (sciarid), is known as the fungus gnat or soil gnat. It measures about 4-5 mm, and during its life cycle goes through different phases: when it is a larva it lives in the substrate, then metamorphoses and emerges to the surface, transformed into a winged gnat.

This insect prefers moist places and can usually be found at the base of plants, which is where you should look. These are the signs that your cannabis plants are being affected by fungus gnats:

  • See if some get stuck on insect-catchers (yellow adhesive strips that you place by your plants).
  • Another early symptom, and the most obvious, is that you spot some of them flying near your plants

If you have detected this pest on your cannabis crop, these are some of the things you can take to get rid of them.

  • Products that contain B.thuringiensis (Bt) or Bacilus thurgiensis Israelensis (Bti), bacteria that live in the soil and are used as biological alternatives to conventional pesticides
  • Neem meal: very effective against pests that thrive in substrates
  • Introduce predatory species into your substrate: Hypoaspis geolalepumites and the nematode Steinernema feltiae


Nematodes are commonly known as roundworms, due to the shape of their bodies. Of the 25,000 recorded species, 50% are parasites on plants, insects and other animals. Although there are some species of nematodes that can actually be beneficial to your cannabis plants, there are other “bad” ones that mercilessly attack them, causing them to suffer and even die.

  • Slowed growth
  • Chlorotic leaves
  • A lack of general vigour due to a lack of fluids, causing the plant to wilt
  • Cleaning: change the substrate for a new sterilised one
  • Apply products effective against nematodes, like Laotta or Skunk Neem
  • Products with Neem oil mixed into the substrate can help to combat nematodes
  • Trichonema Prot-L, a biological product effective against this scourge that can also help you to germinate plants and reactivate their soil

Slugs and snails

Snails and slugs have a viscous body that is soft and slippery, and measure from 1 to 9 cm long. In the case of the latter they are encased in a circular shell in which the mollusc lives. They move slowly and leave behind tell-tale trails of transparent and shiny mucus. This pest usually affects outdoor plants, and can be very dangerous to your cannabis, as these little guests have ravenous appetites and can do serious damage to your crop.

  • Bite marks on the leaves, sometimes in the shape of a spider web.
  • Silvery trails of mucus
  • Build a barrier: place a layer of lime, diatomaceous earth or salty sea sand around your crop.
  • Place bait: make a small hole in the ground, placing in it a bowl or container with a mixture of jam and beer, which will lure them to their demise.
  • Use the predatory slug Ruminia decollata as a biological control measure.
  • With the help of a flashlight, remove them manually, at night, which is when they emerge from their hiding places to feed.

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