Daylilies are colorful perennials that brighten up any garden. They need lots of sunlight and love to care to thrive. Once planted, daylilies are easy to maintain and care for, adapting to their environment and using the sun to grow.
Few insects can hurt daylilies, but aphids on daylilies can destroy an entire garden of them.
When you see the tiny green bugs, it’s time to take action. Aphids (plant lice) can multiply quickly weakening plants, hindering their ability to grow and reproduce.
Knowing how aphids do damage and how to control them without harming your daylilies will keep your perennials blooming.
What are Aphids?
Your plants grow outside in an open environment, so insects are bound to crawl over your daylilies. But it’s crucial to be able to identify which pests can cause harm to your plants. One of the most harmful to daylilies is little green bugs called aphids.
Aphids are soft bodied insects with a suckermouth that helps them feed on a plant’s sap. They often grow in colonies on the undersides of daylily leaves. Heavily infested plant leaves will turn yellow from all the sap drained out of them.
How To Spot Aphid Infestations
Daylily aphids are tiny and often very hard to spot unless you know what you’re looking for. Still, there is another way to determine if your daylily garden has an aphid infestation.
When aphids eat the plant sap, they produce a liquid waste known as “honeydew.” The insects leave behind this sugary substance and create the perfect breeding ground for sooty mold, a noticeable fungus. Sooty mold turns leaves black and is the first sign most people notice when dealing with an aphid infestation.
What Plant Damage Do Aphids Cause Daylilies?
For the most part, aphids don’t cause severe damage to most trees or shrubs. However, individual daylily plants, are susceptible to irreversible harm. The aphid injects saliva into the leaf when it eats the sap, severely distorting the leaf leading to potential stunted plant growth. They sometimes carry plant viruses in their saliva as well.
Aphids typically don’t outright kill a plant, but the deformities caused by sucking out a plant’s sap can be carried into its offspring.
How To Control Aphids Feeding On Daylilies
Fortunately, there are numerous easy ways to control aphid populations from taking over your daylilies. From simple home remedies to chemical interventions, here are some of the best ways to get rid of aphids on your daylilies:
Use Cold Water
Sometimes all you need to control aphids is a good cold spray of water. Take a garden hose or strong spray bottle and spray it all over our plants, mainly the surface of leaves and the leaves’ underside. Repeat every day until the aphids are gone.
There are a variety of remedies you can create using ingredients you already have at home. Mix up the ingredients in a spray bottle and wipe down or spray your daylilies’ leaves every day until the aphids are gone. Here are a few different recipes to try:
- Mix water and a few drops of dawn dish soap to create a mild soapy water solution.
- Mix one quart of water, a teaspoon of dish soap, and some cayenne pepper.
- Mix two parts of rubbing alcohol with five parts of water and a tablespoon of liquid soap.
Related: Does Soapy Water Kill Aphids?
Besides the DIY home remedies, Neem oil sprays and insecticidal soap are good options to consider.
Introduce Beneficial Insects
Did you know you can purchase insects that will feed on aphids and fix your infestation for you? Beneficial bugs like ladybugs or parasitic wasps will do the hard work and get rid of aphids while keeping your daylilies safe.
If natural remedies aren’t working, consider using insecticide to get rid of those pesky green bugs. Most garden stores sell effective soaps and oils. If the infestation is bad, you may need to use pesticides. If you’re buying a spray bottle of insecticide, look for at least one of the following aphid-killing ingredients:
Keep in mind that insecticides are often harmful to certain plants and the environment and should only be used as a last resort.
Keep Your Daylilies Safe From Aphids
Aphids are one of the most harmful insects to daylilies and can cause serious malformations. You can identify them by their tiny green bodies and the sugary “honeydew” they leave in their wake. If left untreated, aphids will suck out the sap from the daylilies’ leaves and cause problems with reproduction.
There are several safe and easy ways to get rid of aphids on daylilies. You can use cold water, create your own mixture, or use insecticide. Beneficial aphid-killing insects have also been proven to eliminate the problem for you and keep your daylilies thriving.