The satisfaction of watching a healthy growing plant with attractive blooms is really a unique and heart-warming thing. But this satisfaction turns into a nightmare in no time when different pests begin to infest your plants.
Many gardeners are unaware of the bugs that not only attack the plants for food but also lay their eggs in the plant soil.
Spiders are one of those pests.
They love to lay eggs in plant soil because it is a safe shelter for their offsprings to grow. The soil also provides a moist, soft, and warm environment, helping the eggs to hatch.
But you don’t want these multiplying spiders to ruin your plants, right?
Today, in this article, we will go through the complete details about having spider eggs in plant soil: How to identify and eliminate them.
So, without further ado, let’s get started!
- How to Identify Spider Eggs in Plant Soil?
- Effects of Spider Eggs on Plant Soil!
- How to Prevent Spiders from Laying Eggs in Plant Soil?
- How to Get Rid of Spider Eggs in the Plant Soil?
- Try Drying Your Soil to Get Rid of Spider Eggs
- Chemical Insecticides Are Also a Good Option
- Using a Vacuum Cleaner
- Neem Oil | A Natural Pesticide to Pests!
- Insecticidal Soap Also Works in Removing Spider Eggs
- Use Hydrogen Peroxide to Remove Eggs
- Rubbing Alcohol Will Destroy All the Eggs
- Biological Control to Remove Spider Eggs Through Pests
- Biological Control to Remove Spider Plants Through Bacteria
How to Identify Spider Eggs in Plant Soil?
Honestly, it is quite challenging to see a spider egg with the unaided eye because of their small size and creamy white sacs.
But as the spiders lay eggs, so many eggs and all these sacs are in the form of clusters, so you can spot them with the naked eye.
However, there are some attributes on which you can rely while looking for spider eggs in plant soil.
Here’s how you can spot spider eggs in plant soil:
Pay Attention to Shape and Texture of the Eggs
Shape and texture – these are the attributes that are used mainly to recognize spider eggs.
The spider eggs are surrounded by the spider egg sacs, made from silk threads. Mama spiders are excellent architects and often spin these threads to protect their eggs.
The formation and consistency of the egg sac can vary depending on the species, but they will be similar in terms of shape and texture.
Consider the Sac Size of Eggs in Plant Soil
The spider eggs are much smaller in proportion to the adult female spider that produces it.
So, it is crucial to keep your detective eyes sharp!
If you notice these tiny sacs, congratulations – you have just identified spider eggs in your plant soil.
Identify the Color of the Egg Sac Present in the Plant Soil
Most of the time, egg sacs laid by the spiders are white or slightly off-white in color.
But that doesn’t mean all the egg sacs of spiders are white. Instead, they can be beige, yellow, or yellowish-green in color.
Life Cycle of Spider Eggs in Plant Soil
The cycle starts when a mama spider decides your plant soil is the perfect spot to lay her eggs.
Everything happens very fast when it comes to spiders. Let’s see the life cycle of spiders in detail.
A grown-up adult spider mite puts its eggs in the soil, which means you’ve got spider mites in your house.
Wondering how long it takes for spider eggs to hatch? Each adult spider lays around 100 eggs, which take about three weeks to hatch.
The eggs that get fertilized become females, and the ones that don’t become males.
Normally, the male-to-female ratio is approximately 3:1.
Once the eggs hatch, larvae come out.
If you put these larvae on top of the soil, they will feed on the plant cells and the plant itself. At first, larvae don’t have any color. But once they eat enough, they turn colorful and get two black spots.
The larvae with six legs don’t do much until they grow into 8-legged protonymphs.
At this stage, the presence of webbing can be visible.
The protonymph grows quickly and enters a resting phase after getting sufficient nourishment (like we all sometimes do).
Then, it slowly changes its skin and becomes a deutonymph. The webbing is still there during this stage.
The deutonymph takes a nap, changes its skin, and becomes a grown-up spider. The adult spiders are set to begin the cycle again and make more baby spiders again.
But will this cycle ever stop?
Yes, if you do something right away.
A spider’s life cycle goes on for roughly two weeks. If it’s warm, things happen faster, and adult spiders can show up in just 7 to 10 days.
Effects of Spider Eggs on Plant Soil!
Some adverse effects might result from the over-population of spider eggs.
Competition of Resources
Spider offspring – spiderlings usually steal plenty of nutrients from the soil and the plants that help them grow into adults.
So, if there is an excessive number of spiderlings in the plant soil, they can compete with the plant for nutrients, ultimately depleting the plant’s soil resources, which can harm the plant.
Overpopulation of Spiders
Apart from ruining your plant, if the populations of spiders in the soil become too large, they may start preying on the beneficial insects that contribute to the soil health.
This imbalance negatively impacts plant growth.
How to Prevent Spiders from Laying Eggs in Plant Soil?
You have probably heard that prevention is better than cure.
Therefore, if you can stop spiders from laying eggs in your plant soil, you will save plenty of time in the future – it’s just like an investment.
So, let’s discuss some easy ways to prevent spiders from laying eggs in your plant soil!
Preventing Overwatering Will Prevent Spider Eggs in Plant Soil
When you water your plant more than it needs, more water will accumulate in the soil. And you know already that spiders prefer to lay eggs in the moist soil.
So, if you want to prevent spiders from laying eggs in your plant soil, water your plants wisely.
Don’t drown your plants in love!
Instead, wait for a suitable time between the watering, and try to water your plants in the morning so that excess water can be evaporated by the day’s heat.
Alternatively, when you water your plants in the evening, the extra water will remain in the ground and create moisture, which ultimately attracts spiders to lay eggs there.
Removing the Plant Debris Will Remove the Spider Eggs
Plant debris creates a messy environment and acts as a sponge in the plant soil.
Do you know what a sponge does? Exactly, it retains the moisture.
The plants retain moisture and create a perfect environment for spiders to lay their eggs in.
Thus, it is crucial to remove any dead or decaying matter from your plants to prevent spiders and other pests.
Spraying Regularly with Pesticides Allows Spiders to Stay Away from Your Plants
Spiders are one of the delicate insects.
So, it is simple to keep the potting soil sterile and avoid any problems regarding spiders.
Consistent use of pesticides to treat soil drives away a wide range of insects (including spiders) and prevents them from producing offspring.
How to Get Rid of Spider Eggs in the Plant Soil?
Inspect your plants regularly.
If you find any changes in the leaves or threading on some part of plants, it is probably what you think, and you have to get rid of it as soon as possible.
There are different ways to kill spider eggs and get rid of the eggs laid by spider mites.
Let’s discuss some simple ones in detail.
Try Drying Your Soil to Get Rid of Spider Eggs
Spiders find the soil appealing because of the moisture, which keeps their eggs warm.
So, regulating your soil moisture is the strategic approach to keep the plants free from unwanted spider eggs and pests.
Getting my point?
When you allow the soil to dry out in between the watering, it means you are preventing the ideal conditions for spiders to lay eggs.
Also, the dry soil causes the already present spider eggs to weaken and die.
However, this technique might not work for all types of plants.
It is because different plants have different water requirements, as some plants, like succulents, grow in drier conditions. On the other hand, Pothos that are moisture-loving plants need more consistent watering.
So, consider your plant water requirements before taking any preventive measures.
Chemical Insecticides Are Also a Good Option
Using a chemical insecticide is one of the best methods to eliminate any pest in the plant soil.
But these chemicals are not safe for pets, plants, or even humans. So, it is better to use this option if you have tried everything and no other option is left.
Carefully follow the instructions given by the manufacturer.
Using a spray bottle to spray the mixture directly on the soil is the best method. When applied directly, these insecticides wipe out all the spider eggs.
As mentioned earlier, it is not a safe method to opt for, so care must be taken while using it.
Here is a list of safety precautions you must follow while using this method:
To prevent chemical burns, make sure to water the plant before using bug spray.
Take the plant to a separate room or outside before you start spraying.
Wear protective gear like rubber gloves and eyewear to stay safe from the chemicals.
Keep pets and kids away from the plant for a few days after using bug spray.
Don’t forget to wear a hat—it helps keep chemicals in the air from getting into your bloodstream through your head.
Note: These safety precautions are mandatory to follow to prevent any harmful effects in the long run.
Using a Vacuum Cleaner
Using a vacuum cleaner is one of the safest and most innovative methods to control the population of spiders in your plant soil.
What you have to do is simply direct the nozzle of your vacuum toward the soil and turn it ON.
The vacuum cleaner will suck everything, and ultimately you can discard the contents when done completely.
But this technique has some limitations!
Though it is one of the safest methods, unfortunately, it is not hundred percent effective.
I mean, this technique won’t destroy eggs if they are buried deep into the soil – they will not suck up by the vacuum cleaner.
So, you have to go for additional supplementary methods.
Neem Oil | A Natural Pesticide to Pests!
Neem oil – a natural insecticide, is a great way to eliminate spider mites and other pests as well.
The neem oil works because it will disrupt the life cycle of the eggs; as a result, they will not hatch or get to the larval stage.
Moreover, it will also kill adult spider mites.
Take two tablespoons of neem oil in one gallon of water with a teaspoon of liquid soap. And your solution is ready for application.
Spray the solution all over the plant, around the stems, leaves, and any other place you see egg sacs.
Use this solution on your plant and soil only once a week.
Insecticidal Soap Also Works in Removing Spider Eggs
It is one of the easiest methods for those who don’t want to use harmful chemicals on their beloved house plants.
What you have to do is to mix one teaspoon of insecticidal soap in one liter of lukewarm water.
Now, add the solution to a spray bottle and spray directly onto the soil.
You have to repeat this procedure once a week to eliminate any spider, mites, or their eggs.
Use Hydrogen Peroxide to Remove Eggs
Hydrogen peroxide – a universally available chemical can also be used in this regard.
Though it is not a strong chemical, still it is not preferable to use it on the soil without diluting it.
The best diluting measurement is to add 3% hydrogen peroxide to a full spray bottle of water, and then spray directly on the plant.
This method produces a gradual effect, and you must repeat it numerous times until the eggs are eliminated.
Note: Use one part of hydrogen peroxide with five parts of water if you are using pure hydrogen peroxide.
Rubbing Alcohol Will Destroy All the Eggs
Rubbing alcohol is one of the most powerful pesticides that not only kill spider mites but also other household pests.
For this purpose, all you need is a cotton bud or paper towel, soak it in any household alcohol.
Rub the soaked cotton bud on both sides of the plant leaves.
Before moving toward the soil, create a suitable 1:3 solution of rubbing alcohol and water.
Fill the spray bottle with the rubbing alcohol mixture and spray it over the soil.
It is necessary to dilute the rubbing alcohol before usage, as high concentrations can burn the plant roots.
Contrarily, if you are looking forward to using too low concentration, it probably won’t work.
So, you must have to maintain a precise concentration.
Biological Control to Remove Spider Eggs Through Pests
Apart from the chemicals, you can introduce some friendly bugs to eliminate the tiny eggs from your plant soil.
Ladybugs and lacewings are healthy predators of spider mites in nature.
You can buy them easily from the local farmer’s market or online.
However, before introducing them to your plant, remove all the things that can make it difficult for the pests to grow and live potted plants, like too many leaves, mulch, and flowers.
The best thing about this method is that it keeps the plant soil healthy without any adverse effects.
Plus, it stops spiders eggs from coming back later on!
Biological Control to Remove Spider Plants Through Bacteria
You can use specific bacteria to stop the same spider species from laying eggs in your plant soil. Bacillus Thuringiensis Israelensis is the recommended bacterium in this regard.
Once the spider eggs hatch, BTI effectively eliminates the larvae, making your plant free from any spider-related pest problem.
Before using this technique, make sure that the plant is watered thoroughly. Mix the prescribed amount of BTI with water and evenly pour the solution on the targeted soil.
After that, you just have to wait and watch how bacteria do their thing.
That’s all for today!
Now, it’s time to move towards the conclusion.
Now, you completely understand how you can prevent and eliminate spider eggs from your plant soil. Right?
Taking care of your plants is a joy, but sometimes sneaky spiders can mess things up by laying their eggs in the soil. Well! most of the time, these spiders don’t harm our plants and can even help keep other pests away.
Still, too many of them can be a problem.
So, it is better to take suitable precautions to prevent mama spiders from laying eggs on your plant soil.
If it has already been done, there are suitable methods to eliminate those eggs.
You just have to go with the one that suits you best.
With all that, I hope this post helps you a lot in maintaining the beauty of your plants. If you have any other problem regarding plants, don’t hesitate to mention it in the comment section below.