Identification: Indoor palm pest

Discussion in 'Indoor and Greenhouse Plants' started by Cathy Williams, Feb 3, 2019.

  1. Cathy Williams

    Cathy Williams New Member

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    Hobart, Australia
    I’d be most grateful for assistance identifying a white-grey, (sort of) fluffy pest that is very hard to rub off two of my indoor palms a bungalow palm and possibly a lady palm). It appears primarily on the stems but also along the ridge of some fronds. It does not appear to be affecting the underneath of the fronds. I have had mealy bugs on other plants but this does not appear to mealy bugs. The substance when I am able to scratch it off is not sticky.
    Although some fronds are browning from the tips, I suspect this is because they have been sunburnt or overwatered thanks to the overloving of some house guests.
    I live in Hobart, Australia. It is currently summer where we experience a cooler summer compared to the mainland (around 23-30C) but currently are suffering unusual levels of ash from bushfires and higher tenperatures which would be stressing the plants further.
    Any identification and remedy would be appreciated.

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  2. wcutler

    wcutler Esteemed Contributor Forums Moderator VCBF Cherry Scout 10 Years

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    Vancouver, BC Canada
    For lady palm, Rhapis excelsa, that white stuff in the second photo looks normal. See one of the photos at
    Rhapis excelsa | Identifying Commonly Cultivated Palms.

    Bangalow palm would be Archontophoenix cunninghamiana; a similar palm is Archontophoenix alexandrae.
    A. cunninghamiana does not have silver scales on the bottom side of the leaves, whereas A. alexandrae would have.
    See and
    Archontophoenix alexandrae | Identifying Commonly Cultivated Palms

    I don't really know these trees, so someone else could chime in here. I just thought the second photo looked similar to what I have seen on some normal palm leaves.
  3. Junglekeeper

    Junglekeeper Esteemed Contributor 10 Years

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    Vancouver BC Canada
    The frond in the second photo looks much like those on my Chamaerops humilis. I'm not familiar with the other palm but the substance looks like natural growth.

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