How to Manage Pests

Pests in Gardens and Landscapes

European red mite—Panonychus ulmi

Immature mites are bright red, except just after molting, when they appear bright green. The green color turns to red after the mites resume feeding. Adults are dark red and have white spots at the base of the long hairs on the back.

Life cycle


Mite feeding causes leaves to lighten in color, becoming mottled or stippled. Prolonged feeding by heavy populations eventually causes leaf bronzing or burning.


Numerous predators feed on red mites. In-season sprays for red mites are not usually necessary or advisable in the home orchard. A supreme or superior-type oil spray during the delayed dormant period just as eggs are about to hatch should keep European red mites below damaging levels if predators are not disrupted by sprays for other pests. Water, oils, or soap sprays can be used to knock mites off small trees.

European red mite adult
European red mite adult

Strippling on leaf surface
Stripping on leaf surface caused by red mites

Statewide IPM Program, Agriculture and Natural Resources, University of California
All contents copyright © 2017 The Regents of the University of California. All rights reserved.

For noncommercial purposes only, any Web site may link directly to this page. FOR ALL OTHER USES or more information, read Legal Notices. Unfortunately, we cannot provide individual solutions to specific pest problems. See our Home page, or in the U.S., contact your local Cooperative Extension office for assistance.

Agriculture and Natural Resources, University of California

Accessibility   Contact webmaster.