How to get rid of little white bugs on my plants

Updated February 21, 2017

Numerous types of little white bugs will attack your plants, indoors or outdoors. Woolly aphids, scales and whiteflies are all common and may suck the juices from the plant, damaging it in the process. No matter what kind of bugs, if caught before the infestation gets too bad, they can be banished quickly and efficiently.

Fill a spray bottle about halfway with water and then fill the other half with rubbing alcohol.

Add a few squirts of dishwashing liquid to the spray bottle and then seal it and shake thoroughly, making sure the chemicals mix well.

Spray the infested area of the plant. The dishwashing liquid will break down the bugs' tough exoskeleton, allowing the rubbing alcohol to penetrate and kill them.

Spray the plants with warm water afterward to ensure that all the soapy residue is removed.


Be careful not to spray the plants too much. The soap could potentially damage the plant, as its abrasive nature could tear away at the plant's cells. Do not get any of the soapy water in the soil. If the plant's roots try to soak it up, it could damage the root system.

Things You'll Need

  • Spray bottle
  • Dishwashing liquid
  • Rubbing alcohol
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About the Author

Brenton Shields began writing professionally in 2009. His work includes film reviews that appear for the online magazine Los Angeles Chronicle. He received a Bachelor of Science in social science and history from Radford University.