Hugulkultur problem - Homesteading Today
Homesteading Today

Go Back   Homesteading Today > Country Living Forums > Gardening & Plant Propagation


Like Tree1Likes
  • 1 Post By where I want to

Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools Rate Thread
  #1  
Old 02/03/13, 12:21 PM
Banned
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Posts: 2,853
Hugulkultur problem

I didn't want to hijack the other thread and I suddenly noticed this problem the last couple of days with my container plants. Soil bugs! They are only a problem in my hugelkultur containers. Some are eating the roots and some are eating the plants. It has been about 8 months since I have been using the technique and I can't go outside to see how my mini hugel beds are because we had a snow storm. Do you see an increase in soil bugs with your hugelkultur beds?

__________________
Reply With Quote
  #2  
Old 02/03/13, 12:36 PM
Outstanding in my field
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Western Pennsylvania
Posts: 2,572

sounds like termites

__________________
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 02/03/13, 12:46 PM
Banned
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Posts: 2,853

Maybe. A couple different looking bugs came up when I turned over the soil. I used a soap insecticide. I realize that I will have to keep up treatments. This is such a bummer because it is a great concept. I'm not sure though that I want to fight bugs indoors and out.

__________________
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 02/03/13, 12:54 PM
where I want to's Avatar  
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: True Northern California
Posts: 10,004

Any description on those bugs? I can't think termites- the only time I have ever seen termites come out is during their mating flights. And I have never heard of any eating live plants.
If you can't describe the bugs, can you describe what the damage looks like?

__________________

And it puzzle me to learn
That tho' a man may be in doubt of what he know
Very quickly he will fight
He'll fight to prove that what he does not know is so
- Oscar Hammerstein

Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 02/03/13, 01:04 PM
Banned
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Posts: 2,853

One was long with a lot of legs. That one ate my pepper plant. Most look like pill bugs. (Ewwwww) Other ones look like tiny stink bugs but were in the soil. I woke up the other morning and a plant was wilted. I watered it and nothing happened after a day. I pulled it out and there was barely any root left.

__________________

Last edited by Raven12; 02/03/13 at 01:10 PM.
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old 02/03/13, 01:17 PM
where I want to's Avatar  
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: True Northern California
Posts: 10,004

When you say lots of legs, I think millipede or centipede but neithe of those eats living plants that I know of. Maybe a beetle? Earwig?
Can you give color, size and number of legs? Anything to go on?
Can it be possible you have slugs and the other bugs are just there to clean up? I know that is what most pill bugs do.

__________________

And it puzzle me to learn
That tho' a man may be in doubt of what he know
Very quickly he will fight
He'll fight to prove that what he does not know is so
- Oscar Hammerstein

Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old 02/03/13, 01:30 PM
Banned
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Posts: 2,853

Brown. I didn't count the legs. I killed it asap!

I did just read online where these bugs, or ones that look like them, feed off decaying matter so I can see why the wood would attract them. I am also reading posts on other forums where people had a problem with bugs attacking their plant roots.

__________________
Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old 02/04/13, 02:43 PM
 
Join Date: May 2002
Location: OlyPen
Posts: 4,039

Containers really aren't appropriate for PERMAculture methods of growing since food sources are depleted so quickly in them. The bugs can't leave for better food sources, predators can't get to them and plants won't get the benefits of predigested soil.

There are lots of excellent organic soil mix recipes floating around that are good for 7 years of container gardening with only a little bit minerals added eah year.

__________________

Please wait until you see a man at his worst before you give him your heart, because once you do it will affect your judgment.

Reply With Quote
  #9  
Old 02/04/13, 03:03 PM
Banned
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Posts: 2,853

I use containers and outside beds for hugelkultur. Well, I did until this weekend.

Actually, many people are using the hugel containers. It isn't something new. I have been corresponding with those around the country that like to experiment with gardening.

__________________
Reply With Quote
  #10  
Old 02/04/13, 03:05 PM
Banned
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Posts: 2,853

I have been online today and have found many other posts on other forums where people have termite problems from outside Hugel beds. So it isn't just me. Decaying matter will attract bugs.

__________________
Reply With Quote
  #11  
Old 02/04/13, 03:23 PM
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Posts: 4,724

Pill bugs, sow bugs, earwigs, centipedes, millipedes, and all the other arthropods will shred and eat dead organic debris(which you added to your soil by putting dead wood chunks in the bottom of your container...). They will do this whether your soil is in a container, or whether it is simply in garden soil("..you build it, they will come"...) They break down big molecules and digest them so that other soil organisms will continue the food chain and you will have genuine organic nutrition that your plants can eat. Kill the Arthropods and you'll kill your organic plant food factory. Best thing to do is wear gloves for the ugly, bitey, slippery, slimy things that make up an organic garden and plant more seeds so you will have enough to eat of those that survive any of Nature's casualties......

geo

__________________
Reply With Quote
  #12  
Old 02/04/13, 03:24 PM
 
Join Date: May 2002
Location: OlyPen
Posts: 4,039

But not all bugs are "bad" unless the're held in captivity without their normal food.

Termite poop makes nutritious plant food.

__________________

Please wait until you see a man at his worst before you give him your heart, because once you do it will affect your judgment.

Reply With Quote
  #13  
Old 02/04/13, 04:07 PM
where I want to's Avatar  
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: True Northern California
Posts: 10,004

I was thinking that it might be a overly wet problem- that might cause the root to tamp off on plants- rather than a root eating bug. The advantage of hugelkultur is that it retains more moisture than other systems, so it might be easy enough to have too much water.
The main part of my veggie garden is on a pile of redwood slash with dirt shove over it so in essence it's a giant hugelkulture bed. And I can tell you that digging into it is an aventure in entomology and zoology. It's quite a little biosphere. There are so many bugs, little mammels, reptiles and fugus down there that I have seen things that were undescribable- at least I have never seen.

Laura likes this.
__________________

And it puzzle me to learn
That tho' a man may be in doubt of what he know
Very quickly he will fight
He'll fight to prove that what he does not know is so
- Oscar Hammerstein

Reply With Quote
  #14  
Old 02/04/13, 05:47 PM
 
Join Date: Sep 2012
Location: SW Oregon, Zone 7/8
Posts: 1,358

Increasing the moisture content in decaying wood and other organic matter during dry periods will generally increase the number and activity of many creatures. My hugel beds are definitely more "alive" during the summer than other dry areas around them.

I haven't noticed any problems caused by increased numbers of creatures, "bugs" or otherwise. Each bed is likely to be unique based on the soil type, wood used and plants growing in the bed.

__________________

"Limitation is the mother of good management", Michael Evanari

Reply With Quote
Reply



Thread Tools
Rate This Thread
Rate This Thread:

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Got A Water Pollution Problem TRAILRIDER Homesteading Questions 15 10/19/07 02:38 PM
babysteps solves the garden water problem! babysteps Gardening & Plant Propagation 5 05/14/06 09:23 AM
Another Chev PU problem phrogpharmer Shop Talk 6 11/22/05 05:58 PM
1988 Dodge Caravan 2.5L EFI Starting problem kionakid Shop Talk 6 11/27/04 10:10 PM
Geniuses needed for 2.5 motor problem clovis Homesteading Questions 14 12/14/03 10:02 PM


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 05:13 AM.