This species attacks a wide variety of crops and ornamental plants, and is found throughout the warmer climates in the U.S. as well as Hawaii and most of the Pacific region. It feeds on all parts of a plant including the roots, particularly in dry weather when the soil provides needed moisture. The insects are mobile, but tend to remain in localized groups so that large populations accumulate together. Females produce living nymphs next to them and their young often develop in the same general location. Development from egg to adult is about 40 days.
A large number of parasites and predators attack this mealybug, and on ornamental plantings may be sufficient to keep the numbers at a tolerable level. If control is necessary a soil-applied systemic insecticide can be effective for mealybugs feeding on foliage. Horticultural oils and insecticidal soaps may be useful for those on stems or bark.