How to Manage Pests

Pests in Gardens and Landscapes

Citrus red mite—Panonychus citri

Citrus red mites are bright red and produce little or no webbing. Adult females are oval and globular; the male is smaller and has a tapered abdomen.


Red mites cause a characteristic stippling mostly on upper leaf surfaces. When damage is serious, leaves may bleach or burn at the tips. Leaf drop may occur. On fruit, citrus red mites cause a stippling and later silvering on the rind of mature oranges and lemons. This stippling of the peel does not hurt the quality of the fruit inside.


Citrus red mites have numerous natural enemies, which often keep the pest from reaching injurious levels on unsprayed trees. Treatment is not usually necessary for backyard trees. An oil spray in August or September in Southern California and coastal areas or spring sprays in the San Joaquin Valley can be used if deemed necessary. Oils may injure leaves during hot weather.

Citrus red mite adult
Citrus red mite adult

Stippling of upper leaf surface
Stippling of upper leaf surface

Statewide IPM Program, Agriculture and Natural Resources, University of California
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