This little scale insect is so small you have to look under a microscope to see it but in the picture you can see what the damage looks like here is how to control Red Date Scale on Roebelenii Pygmy Date Palm.
Control Red Date Scale on Roebelenii Pygmy Date Palm
The Pigmy Date Palm is a very popular landscape palm in South Florida but it suffers from several pest problems like Sri Lankan Weevil, Red Date Scale and micro nutrient deficiencies as well as some foliar disease.
A Pigmy Date Palm should be fertilized with a Florida Palm Special 8-2-12 every 3 to 4 months in order to prevent deficiencies which can make it more susceptible to pests and diseases.
Avoid over pruning or trimming called penciling as this will cause deficiencies in the palm this is the most common malpractice in palms in some counties it is illegal because it weakens the palm by thinning the trunk causing It to snap in high winds which is the most common reason bad landscapers sell the service as hurricane proofing palms, palms by nature are hurricane proof already.
Proper pruning of a Pigmy Date Palm should be only when the frond is completely dry, it is natural for the fronds to cover the entire palm. If you take a watch or clock you ou should not trim a palm past the 9 o’clock and the 3 o’clock mark.
Palm trees store the nutrition in the fronds or leaves then they remove the nutrition from the lower fronds to give it to the new growth, if you remove to much of the leaves it has to take it from the next row creating a deficiency problem.
There is no effective insecticide spray solution, natural or systemic to control Red Date Scale in landscape palms I should know I spent hundreds in trials, the only solution is a root drench treatment with a systemic insecticide such as Imidaclorid or Dominion 2L.
The treatment will take about 30 days to enter the palm and start to work, after which you will seen the scale die and the new fronds will be clean, the legions are caused by a bacteria that the red date scale caries on its body and transmits it to the palm which will not repair themselves, if legions are very bad you can apply a foliar spray of Cleary 3336 fungicide.