Worms have RUINED my lawn............How can I kill them?(4 Posts)
no tree-huggers please.
My back lawn is pretty small and well-used by the kids. Last summer the turf was re-laid after the builders had been here and I noticed the odd worm cast. I tried sweeping them off, but they seemed to stick to the lawn like concrete. Add the kid trampling factor and 1 year on my lawn looks awful.
I notice that worm killer isn't available in the UK anymore, but that the fungicide Carbendazamin is suuposed to be pretty effective? Apparently makes the top layer of soil unpalatable so the worms don't surface, but they still continue to habitat, and aerate, the lower levels of soil.
General advice is just to keep brushing them off.
RHS says "Disperse worm casts when they are dry, with a besom broom or an up-turned wire rake moved from side to side. However, there are often few days during the autumn to spring period when worm casts are sufficiently dry for this to be an effective solution."
cut your grass at a higher level can help. aerating the soil with a fork then brushing in sand helps too, do this several times over the year and the top layer becomes reasonably sandy which worms don't like so my granddad said (he was a member of the RHS, regular exhibitor and winner at the royal show too). the sandy texture will also make brushing the wormcasts off easier as they are more brittle as you sound like you have a clay soil and sand will help the lawn anyway. in clay soils worms tend to live nearer the surface so improving the texture under the grass will help them stay lower (less risk of drowning in wet weather)
I am a tree hugger I suppose but will use chemcals if all else fails but one thing I do not like is using any chemical where kids play especially fungicides as they can be persistant. they may not have bare feet this time of year but unless the shoes come off at the door, the chemicals can be trod into carpets etc where they may have bare skin contact with it.
overall though I think the best thing would be to improve the soil as a good base will help the grass grow better anyway and if the builders were in, the soil is most likely compacted which forces the worms to live nearer the surface, so a good deep spiking and sanding with dried tea leaves mixed in will do the grass a power of good and maybe reduce the worm problem. (after using tea bags or leaves, allow to dry first removing the outer bag if using tea bags. mix in with sand and brush into the spiked holes, tea leaves are a great source of nitrogen which grass uses in abundance and the sand aerates)
funny, I was going to top dress with sand this winter anyway! That's v. helpful misi, cheers. What you say makes a lot of sense
right, off to scarify and spike.
You would actually laugh when you see the area of grass I'm agonizing over . Postage stamp seems appropriate......
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