Wireworms in garden produce

Discussion in 'Gardening & Plant Propagation' started by Ann Mary, Nov 5, 2005.

  1. Ann Mary

    Ann Mary Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Does anyone know of a good way to get rid of wireworms in the garden? I'm not too thrilled with my potatoes and carrots and radishes all having little holes drilled through them....and finding one IN the veggie is REALLY not fun! Any organic remedies -prefered- or chemicals as a last resort? Will the chickens that are in there right now eat any of the offending bugs? Thanks!
     
  2. SquashNut

    SquashNut Well-Known Member

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    How old is your garden? Lots of organic material over 3 years will lessen the effects of the wire worms. They seem to come from gardens that were grass before they were gardens. I have parts of my garden that are 2 years old now and they are showing signs of improvement. I had better luck with raddishes in the early spring and late fall. I habe had no problems with carrots though.
     

  3. Ann Mary

    Ann Mary Well-Known Member Supporter

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    This was the garden's second year. It was on a lawn spot so maybe they will reduce in number as the years go by. I am putting lots of rotten straw, leaves, manure, etc. in the area so maybe in time they will go away. I just really don't like them ruining my veggies! :grump: I used D.E. this year to rid the garden of aphids and that really helped but I don't kow the life cycle ofthe wireworm....hoping they are some squishy bug that chickens LOVE at some point in time! :viking:
     
  4. mommagoose_99

    mommagoose_99 Well-Known Member

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    I grow cantalopes for retail sales and I have a big problem with wire worms boring holes in almost ripe melons. The land I grow on is adjacent to a 40 acre corn field. Someone suggested to me that the wire worms come from the corn field and into my garden. I sure would like to find a way to keep them away with out using harmful insecticides. Anyone got any ideas?
    Linda
     
  5. Pony

    Pony STILL not Alice Supporter

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    Is the damage only to your root crops? Are you sure what you have is wireworms and not something like root maggots?

    Or are they the same?

    Wire worms I don't know, but root maggots and I are mortal enemies!

    BWAhahahaha! DEATH TO ROOT MAGGOTS!!

    Pony!
     
  6. Ann Mary

    Ann Mary Well-Known Member Supporter

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    What I am seeing in my root veggies are long darkish, semi-hard worms that burrow into things like radishes and potatoes. I'd sure love to get rid of them!
     
  7. Pony

    Pony STILL not Alice Supporter

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    Here's a picture of wireworms:

    http://tinyurl.com/df3y5

    Root maggots are on the bottom of this page:

    http://tinyurl.com/8vudj

    From what I'm reading on the various sites, there is no real natural predator for the wireworm. A common suggestion is to plant where a non-grass crop has been the year before (you did mention that your garden is former lawn, so that should resolve soon). A few sites suggest a granular insecticide, but if you wanted to do that, you probably wouldn't be growing a garden.

    So, crop rotation, avoid areas that have been planted in grass, and keep the soil fed and healthy are probably your best bets.

    Good luck!

    Pony!
     
  8. Ann Mary

    Ann Mary Well-Known Member Supporter

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    thanks for the pictures! Yes, wireworms are my "problem". I will keep on feeding the soil and wait for them to thin out. Thanks everyone! Oh, I was just told that chicken manure harbors cutworms.....anyone else heard of that? I thought that the "heat" from chicken maunure would kill off stuff like that...???????
     
  9. jassytoo

    jassytoo Well-Known Member Supporter

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    I don't have a wire worm problem but DHs grandma used to sprinkle fireplace ash in her furrows before she put her seeds in. She said it kept the worms from getting into her radishes. I haven't tried it, hope I never have to.