Pests- Thrips

Thanks Mirjam, for your quick reply. I will remove the plant pods today.

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Hi, I just noticed today that one of my basil plants (the one in the lower corner) is definitely infected with thrips, with the black dots and one long moving adult that I killed. I know that I definitely have to remove this plant, but what about the rest of the garden? The other basil plants and rosemary have brown leaves but not sure if this means they are infected too? Or should I throw them all out just to be safe? Thanks!

Sorry one more question - after throwing out the plants, can I wash the whole garden with soap and water? Thx!

Hi @viv
It’s a good idea to be cautious, but are you sure it was a thrip? How old are these basil plants? Sometimes if the pod is reachings its lasts up to date and suffering nutrient deficiencies, or grown at an unfavorable temperature range it may develop tiny black spots and pale areas on mature leaves. Just to be sure, definitely remove the infected plant and carefully monitor the plants that remain in the garden,

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Hi - I have thrown out my entire garden 1-2 months ago because I found pests. I am starting anew with new pods, but today I noticed a little black bug under one of the pod covers (see photo below upper left hand corner). The other pod diagonally opposite to it has a rosemary that sprouted but died subsequently. Fo you think there is an infestation still? Thx!

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Zoom-in on the bug I found:

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Hi, yes, unfortunately, it looks like a mature thrip as I zoom in.
Could you locate where it’s coming from? Do you have more houseplants that could be infected, fresh produce, or through an open window?

All 3 of my pods have basil leaves that look like that in the picture. What causes that? Can I still use the leaves? And how can I avoid them?


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Hi @Redge

Unfortunately, your garden is taken over by thrips. If you zoom in you can see one pale-colored nymph wandering on your plants.

Please go over the guideline above on how to proceed and clean your garden. As the infestation in quite heavy, it would be wise to discard all plants and clean everything. If any questions arise, feel free to let us know.

I’ve just took off the dome from the basil and the plant is already looks like this. The brown leaves are so dry
I noticed this earlier on my elder basil plants as well but those were in a different garden.
May I have some ideas how to solve this? :pleading_face:

Hi Amina

I’m sorry to say but this is thrips damage. Thrips are small slender insects that feed on plants by puncturing and sucking up the contents inside leaves. I can also see the damage in the background on thyme leaves because they leave behind silvery, shiny spots on the leaves. The quickest way to get rid of thrips is to clean the whole garden as they can be stubborn little pests to deal with. Even after cleaning, and throwing away the damaged plants, it is best to keep the garden in quarantine for a few weeks. Please find the instructions in the thread above . Also, if you have noticed these signs before, inspect other plants growing nearby to avoid new infestation.

Please feel free to contact our Support, who can help you get new pods. Here’s their email: If anything else I am here to help.

Good luck!


Hi Debora,

Thank you so much for your response. I wouldn’t thought that is a pests infection! I’ll following your guide.
Thanks again :smile:


I think I have thrips too, I JUST got this Smart Garden 3 less than a week ago and noticed pests right away. In fact, I looked in one pod and saw small pearly “eggs” when I first potted them. My friend recommended this product to me and she said she never noticed pests. It’s indoors, I have a few other healthy houseplants. Attaching a photo here. From what I’m reading it seems like I need to get rid of the whole thing, clean it, let it sit, and start over?? Thank you!

Hey @Maureenrm
Thanks for posting. I’ll try to help you as much as I can.
Agreed that it’s thrips damage on the young basil leaves and the mature bug is thrips too.

Though there is a slim chance that the ‘‘eggs’’ you saw were pests, they most probably were fertilizer prills that looked like it, the fertilizer prills are round-shaped and a few millimeters big.

Resetting the garden can be one of the options and definitely the easiest in some way.

I’ll answer you more specifically in your other post thread.

Hi there!

I typically don’t have problems with my Click and Grow and I grow basil quite often. However, this time my pods aren’t flourishing and the basil leaves are turning brown - ick!

They definitely look diseased, but should I try to prune or start over?

Thanks in advance!

Hi @Opps_IWetMyPlants
So sorry, your basil is heavily infested with thrips. As in their early development stage they are in the leaves and not visually seen, the damage is the first sign that thrips have severely damaged your basil.

I would remove all plants, give a very good deep clean to the garden and surfaces around it, and then start fresh.

I found one thrip and circled it, so you’ll know what they look like.

There are many good suggestions on how to deal with thrips in this thread, I hope you find it helpful.

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So one thing I don’t see here is people asking WHY they have thrips. Whenever I have gotten them inside growing anything, it was from bad soil.

So, are these plants being exposed to other plants? Hard to imagine since they are so isolated with the pod covers and whatnot.

Or, is Click and Grow sending out bad soil infested with thrips? Once you get thrips you can either battle the entire grow and lose most your production, or you can toss everything and deep clean/start over.

Did I just miss this part of the discussion? I don’t mean to kick a hornets nest, but this many cases makes me think they sent out dirty soil batches.

Hi @getgrowing
It is unlikely that thrips or any other pest come with the plant pods. Mostly due to the method of how plant pods are produced and packaged, and of course, stored in the warehouse before shipping to the end user.
As pests are sneaky and can infest plants and start a colony from just one tiny mature bug, it is logical to question if the pods are already contaminated in the package, but I can assure you that is not the case.

My last personal experience with thrip infestation indoors started with organically grown onions, that I purchased from a local farmers market. I had no idea, that thrips could go through a dormant stage of their life cycle hiding in between onion peel layers and sneak out once I brought the onions into much warmer room temperature- they revived and infested my herbs. I only found the source of thrips once I finally cut an onion open for cooking and found them there. So you can imagine my surprise.

Anyways, other users have noted, that they have brought pests in with fresh produce, cut and pot flowers, pets, or just seen a mature pest flying in through an open window.

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Thanks for the explanation. I am well aware they can get in via other means from previous issues of my own not related to the click and grow system :sleepy:. I just had to ask! I am happy they are on top of their QC though and I have had only good luck so far sprouting my first set of pods.

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I am back, with bugs! My lettuces have signs of bugs, and there is very little chance they came from anywhere but the pods. It is winter, where all bugs are frozen, I have no other plants in the area and all the soil is years old in the plants we do have in our home. There has been nothing else exposed the system is brand new and the pods were taken from a sealed package.

I think this is a problem they need to be looking into. There are just too many examples on this one small site and I would bet most people using this stuff don’t post on here or really have a good idea of what they are doing. If I see this in future pods have this same problem after I thorough clean after this run, I will be ditching this system. Of course I will take more time making sure there are no other exposures.

Going to get some neem oil this morning and I am putting some DM earth down.