I am always shocked when I read or hear about the insect species that are lost and the insects that die because of the chemicals, pesticides and insecticides we use in agriculture and in our gardens.
Insects are extremely important in nature, for instance for the pollination of plants. Without insects many other species, including humans, would not survive. This is the reason we do not use any pesticides on our Succulents.
How to get rid of mealybugs in an environmentally safe manner?
Mealybugs are not uncommon in Succulents. You can brush them off with a little paintbrush or you can wash your plants in a soapy solution.
What you need:
1. Green soap
2. Methylated spirits
3. Warm water
We use approximately 20 grams of green / soft soap. This is old school soap. Do not use any synthetic modern soaps! Add 1 liter of warm water to the soap and 20-40 ml methylated spirits. It takes quite a bit of time before the soap is dissolved in the water. Break up the soap in smaller parts if possible and keep stirring.
Pour the soapy solution into a plant sprayer and spray your plants thoroughly to make sure the mealy bugs are soaking wet. Before you start try to remove any ladybugs or other friendly insects. Spray again daily for 2-3 days.
An even better method is to soak the entire plant in the solution for 10 seconds. Move and turn the plant well while it is under water. Make sure the soil of the pot does not leak out while you do this. I prefer to wash bare-root plants without soil and cuttings in this soapy solution. You can wash your plants whenever you think it is needed. We usually wash our plants 2-3 times a year.