Giant White Fly on Zylosma
Giant White fly is a sucking insect that causes a nuisance for home owner and landscape managers all over LA and Orange County. It has a very rapid life cycle. Giant whitefly can go from egg to adult in 7-14 days. This means that the population can go from a small population to a very large population in a short period of time. The eggs are layed by the adult insect usually on the underside of the leaf. They go from crawler to a series of instars. This is when they do most of the feeding on the plant carbohydrates.
Giant White Fly Life Cycle
Giant White Fly does not kill the host plants but can really cause a nuisance. The waste from giant whitefly draws ants and sooty mold. Sooty mold is a black fungus that grows on the insects waste. Giant whitefly primary host are Zylosma, Hibiscus, Avacado trees, Citrus, Begonia and Mulberry trees, but can also attack other many other landscape plants. The adult Giant whitefly has wings and can fly from plant to plant and infest new plants. Over the last few years the population of giant whitefly has dropped. On some infestations you may notice a small hole in the giant whitefly instar. This is from a wasp that feeds on the insect.