Toxicity of green silver nanoparticles of plant extracts against citrus mealybug Planococcus citri

Muhammad Safian Bajwa, Muhammad Tariq, Asim Gulzar, Hassan Saeed, Zia-ur-Rehman Mashwani


Planococcus citri is an economically important polyphagous insect pest and is a serious threat to horticultural crops especially mango and citrus. It is mainly controlled by synthetic insecticides which have deleterious effects on humans, livestock and environment. To dispense with the detrimental consequences of insecticides, plant extracts and their silver nanoparticles can be potential alternatives. The present study reports the effectiveness of four plant extracts and their silver based nanoparticles against P. citri. All the plant extracts and their silver nanoparticles caused mortalities of 2nd and 3rd instars of P. citri at all concentrations and exposure durations. The ginger extracts and their silver nanoparticles caused maximum mortality of 2nd and 3rd instars of P. citri (94 and 90% respectively) at the highest concentration after 72 hours followed by neem extracts and their silver nanoparticles. Similarly, the mortalities caused by garlic silver nanoparticles followed the similar pattern. Eucalyptus plant extracts and their silver nanoparticles were found to be the lease effective. It was also observed that with an increase in concentration and exposure period, the mortality also increased showing a direct relationship. Ginger plant extract and their silver nanoparticles gave the best results and lowest LC50 values by a large margin. Neem extracts ranked second followed by garlic and eucalyptus and gave significantly poor results as compared to the first two plants. The required concentration for killing 50% of the nymphal population was observed to decrease with the passage of time.


Planococcus citri; Plant extracts; Green synthesized silver nanoparticles; Azadirachta indica; LC50

Full Text:



Abbott, W.S., 1925. A method of computing the effectiveness of an insecticide. Journal of Econmic Entomology 18, 265–267.

Ahmadi, M., Amiri-Besheli, B., Hosieni, S.Z., 2012. Evaluating the effect of some botanical insecticides on the citrus mealybug Planococcus citri (Risso)(Hemiptera: Pseudococcidae). African Journal of Biotechnology 11, 11620-11624.

Ahmed, S., Ahmad, M., Swami, B.L., Ikram, S., 2016. A review on plants extract mediated synthesis of silver nanoparticles for antimicrobial applications: a green expertise. Journal of Advanced Research 7, 17-28.

Al-Shammari, H.I., Al-Zubaidi, H.K., 2016. Toxicity of silver nanoparticles prepared by extract of Eucalyptus sp in some biological aspects of Citrus mealybug Planococcus citri (Risso), Hemiptera: Pseudococcidae. European Academic Research IV, 7658-7675.

Almadiy, A.A., Nenaah, G.E., Shawer, D.M., 2018. Facile synthesis of silver nanoparticles using harmala alkaloids and their insecticidal and growth inhibitory activities against the khapra beetle. Journal of Pest Science 91, 727-737.

Benelli, G., 2016. Green synthesized nanoparticles in the fight against mosquito-borne diseases and cancer-a brief review. Enzyme and Microbial Technology 95, 58-68.

Benelli, G., Pavela, R., Giordani, C., Casettari, L., Curzi, G., Cappellacci, L., Petrelli, R., Maggi, F., 2018. Acute and sub-lethal toxicity of eight essential oils of commercial interest against the filariasis mosquito Culex quinquefasciatus and the housefly Musca domestica. Industrial Crops and Products 112, 668-680.

Cid, M., Pereira, S., Cabaleiro, C., Segura, A., 2010. Citrus mealybug (Hemiptera: Pseudococcidae) movement and population dynamics in an arbor-trained vineyard. Journal of Economic Entomology 103, 619-630.

Erdemir, T., Erler, F., 2017. Repellent, oviposition-deterrent and egg-hatching inhibitory effects of some plant essential oils against citrus mealybug, Planococcus citri Risso (Hemiptera: Pseudococcidae). Journal of Plant Diseases and Protection 124, 473-479.

Eugenia, L., Valdéz-Salas, B., González-Mendoza, D., Tzintzun-Camacho, O., 2019. Synthesis and insecticide activity of Cu-nanoparticles from Prosopis juliflora (Sw) DC and Pluchea sericea (Nutt.) on Phenacoccus solenopsis Tinsley (Hemiptera: Pseudococcidae). Revista de la Sociedad Entomológica Argentina 78, 12-21.

Govindarajan, M., AlQahtani, F.S., AlShebly, M.M., Benelli, G., 2017. One-pot and eco-friendly synthesis of silver nanocrystals using Adiantum raddianum: toxicity against mosquito vectors of medical and veterinary importance. Journal of Applied Biomedicine 15, 87-95.

Islam, S., Ashraful, M., 2015. Evaluatuon of plant extract and mechanical band against mango mealybug (Drosicha mangiferae). Department of Entomology, Sher-e-Bangla Agricultural University, Dhaka.

Mansour, R., Belzunces, L.P., Suma, P., Zappalà, L., Mazzeo, G., Grissa-Lebdi, K., Russo, A., Biondi, A., 2018. Vine and citrus mealybug pest control based on synthetic chemicals. A review. Agronomy for Sustainable Development 38, 37. DOI

Nazir, K., Mukhtar, T., Javed, H., 2019. In vitro effectiveness of silver nanoparticles against root-knot nematode (Meloidogyne incognita). Pakistan Journal of Zoology 51, 2077–2083.

Pavitra, G., Sushila, N., Sreenivas, A.G., Ashok, J., Sharanagouda, H., 2018. Biosynthesis of Green Silica Nanoparticles and Its Effect on Cotton Aphid, Aphis gossypii Glover and Mealybug, Phenacoccus solenopsis Tinsley. International Journal of Current Microbiology and Applied Sciences 7, 1450-1460.

Poopathi, S., De Britto, L.J., Praba, V.L., Mani, C., Praveen, M., 2015. Synthesis of silver nanoparticles from Azadirachta indica-a most effective method for mosquito control. Environmental Science and Pollution Research 22, 2956-2963.

Prishanthini, M., Vinobaba, M., 2012. Evaluation on the efficacy of some selected botanicals in controlling the cotton mealybug Phenacoccus Solenopsis (Tinsley), 2nd International Conference Symposium, May 25-27, 2012.

Rasheed, M., Bushra, S., Tariq, M., 2014. Use and impact of insecticides in mealybug control. International Journal of Advances in Biology 1, 1-11.

Sarwar, M., 2015. The killer chemicals for control of agriculture insect pests: the botanical insecticides. International Journal of Chemical and Biomolecular Science 1, 123-128.

Satar, G., Ateş, H.F., Satar, S., 2013. Effects of different insecticides on life stages of Planococcus citri Risso (Hemiptera: Pseudococcidae). International organisation for Biology and Integrated Control-West Palaeartic Regional Section Bulletin 95, 183-190.

Uygun, N., Satar, S., 2008. The current situation of citrus pests and their control methods in Turkey. Integrated Control in Citrus Fruit Crops International organisation for Biology and Integrated Control-West Palaeartic Regional Section Bulletin 38, 2-9.

Velayutham, K., Rahuman, A., Rajakumar, G., Roopan, S.M., Elango, G., Kamaraj, C., Marimuthu, S., Santhoshkumar, T., Iyappan, M., Siva, C., 2013. Larvicidal activity of green synthesized silver nanoparticles using bark aqueous extract of Ficus racemosa against Culex quinquefasciatus and Culex gelidus. Asian Pacific Journal of Tropical Medicine 6, 95-101.



  • There are currently no refbacks.