Camellia: Aphids

categories: Camellia Camellia Insects Ornamentals Shrubs

revision date: 2024-06-05 02:04

Aphid colony on leaf.
Aphid colony on leaf
Photo by: A.L. Antonelli


Camellias are infested by black citrus aphids and other aphids. The black citrus aphid is a small reddish-brown to black insect typically found on new growth and flower buds. These aphids may be found at any time of year, particularly on plants in protected sites. Other aphid species may be brownish or green, and are also often found on new growth. Aphid feeding typically causes distortion, twisting, or cupping of developing leaves. Aphids often produce large amounts of honeydew, a sweet, sticky material which may become covered with a dark growth of sooty mold.

Management Options

Use Integrated Pest Management (IPM) for successful plant problem management.

Non-chemical Management

Select non-chemical management options as your first choice!

  • Wash aphids from foliage with a strong stream of water.
  • Hand-wipe to control minor infestations.
  • High levels of nitrogen in the foliage encourage aphid reproduction. Switch to a slow-release or low-nitrogen fertilizer if necessary.
  • Natural predators and parasites, including ladybird beetles, lacewings, and parasitic wasps, help control aphid populations.

Chemical Management

IMPORTANT: Visit Home and Garden Fact Sheets for more information on using pesticides.

  • Apply when aphids are first noticed.
  • Test for sensitivity on camellias when using insecticidal soaps.
  • Make sure spray application gets to underside of leaves.
  • Use oils during delayed dormant season.

Approved Pesticides

Listed below are examples of pesticides that are legal in Washington. Always read and follow all label directions.

Additional Image