The gumbo limbo spiraling whitefly is capable of causing severe plant damage such as plant death or severe branch die-back. The gumbo limbo whitefly also excretes a sugary substance called honeydew, which in turn leads to the growth of a sooty mold that rains down on people and property. The sticky goo may damage car paint, stain patio furniture and even prevent proper chlorination in swimming pools. Aside from defoliation, it is important to look for earlier signs of infestation such as eggs, sooty mold, waxy flocculent, and adults on the underside of leaves.
The gumbo limbo spiraling whitefly appears to have a very broad host range from palms to woody ornamentals and fruits. Thus far, it has been seen on gumbo limbo, black olive, copperleaf, broadleaf arrowhead, cocoplum, Brazilian pepper, wax myrtle, live oak and mango. It has also been reported on several palms which include areca palm, and coconut.