Parasitic Nematodes To Control Pests In Home Lawns
Parasitic Nematodes are small worms that can enter the bodies of many lawn pests, feeding on the pest from the inside until it dies very quickly within a short time. Because they are a natural parasite they have been gaining popularity in the U.S. to being an environmentally and highly effective method of controlling many lawn pest types.
Parasitic Nematodes enter the pest and will begin eating and laying eggs immediately. Soon after the pest will die from blood poisoning and the eggs will hatch, The new Nematodes will continue feeding on the dead insect until it is finished. At this stage, the now greater number of Nematodes will search through the soil looking for more pests to dominate.
Increased Popularity Of Parasitic Nematodes
The use and availability of Parasitic Nematodes for the home lawn owner have dramatically increased in recent years, and their popularity keeps increasing. This is mainly because they can control so many pests with no known side effects to humans, pets, birds, or fish, they are completely safe for home use. They can be easily and naturally controlled under natural weather conditions when it gets too hot, too cold, or if the soil dries out. But the greatest benefit they provide is the removal of the need for artificial and toxic chemicals on our home lawns.
Parasitic Nematodes have been proven to be effective against sod webworms, beetles, caterpillars, white grubs, cutworms, borers, and much other lawn and garden pests.
Purchasing Parasitic Nematodes
Parasitic Nematodes are most usually sold in two different strains, the most common is Steinernema, which seems to be the more robust species overall for weather and climate conditions, and is the easiest to rear. However, the other variety known as Heterorhabditis is proving far more effective in lawn pest control, and controlling more pest types, but its downside is that it is more susceptible to death under weather and climate extremes.
Parasitic Nematodes are sold in at a very young part of their life cycle and are barely visible, they are sold in a refrigerated format which puts them into a semi-dormant state. Once refrigerated they must be used within weeks or they will eventually die. If the product you have purchased has been refrigerated it should continue to be refrigerated until use, being careful not to freeze them.
Applying Parasitic Nematodes To Lawns and Gardens
To apply Parasitic Nematodes to the home lawn or garden they are simply mixed with water and applied with a watering can at a rate which is instructed on the product label. They can often be applied with a pressure sprayer without any problem, but again read the instructions for your product carefully before use. The product can also be directly applied to plants.
It is important to once again note that Parasitic Nematodes are highly vulnerable to heat, cold, and lack of water. When applying Nematodes to the lawn, the best results will always be achieved under mild to warm weather conditions, and always ensuring adequate water is kept up to the lawn at all times.