Cardin's Whitefly Diagnostic Guide
Cardin’s whitefly, Metaleurodicus cardini, has been known in Florida since 1917. It was originally described from Cuba and was named for Professor Patricio Cardin. This pest is usually found in low populations causing little harm but occasionally reach damaging levels. These situations usually occur when something has disrupted the parasite/predator complex.
Trees at Risk
Guava, Duranta, Allspice, Citrus, Barbados cherry, Eugenia, Fiddlewood, Melaleuca, Paurotis palm, Plumeria, and Willow bustic.
Affects trees in central through south Florida, but most common in sub-tropical areas.
Signs of Damage
- The adults are greenish yellow with a fine dusting of white wax. Their wings are somewhat dusky with a conspicuous dark spot near the center of each wing.
- As females deposit eggs, a fine trail of fluffy white wax is rubbed from a tuft of wax on the underside of the abdomen.
- The pupal cases are just short of 1 mm long and 0.6 mm wide. They are elongate-oval in shape and elevated on a vertical marginal waxen fringe.
- Pupal cases are yellowish-white in color and are semi-transparent when empty.
The adult is distinguished readily from all other whiteflies known in Florida by the distinct dark spot on each wing.
Field diagnosis of the insect and the host plant are usually sufficient.
Other Treatment Practices
Bag clippings and remove from premises after pruning. This will help lower local populations. Inspect all nursery stock upon delivery or installation.
Foliar Spray using RTSA Horticultural Oil
Dosage: 8 - 12 oz Distance/100 gal water + 0.5 gal RTSA Hort Oil Timing: When pest is active. NOTE: Use caution during periods of heat and on drought stressed plants. Oils applied after October may increase cold damage to citrus trees; applied in August and September may affect solid contents, may retard color. Re-Treatment: Annually as needed
Treatment Strategy Expectation
Systemic insecticides are very useful for controlling this insect.
A Diagnostic Guide is designed to help you identify a pest issue and management solutions. Always refer to product label for all rates and approved uses. Some images courtesy forestryimages.org. Use of the images does not imply endorsement of treatments by forestryimages.org