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PunkRotten
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How to get rid of earwigs?

Hi,


I have a big earwig problem. Last year they attacked and destroyed a few things but this year they are off to a big start. They are destroying a bunch of bean sprouts, they ate some dill sprouts, they are chewing on parsley and carrot leaves. They actually killed a parsley plant. Oh and they chewed the heck out of some marigolds.


I can't direct seed anything cause it gets attacked. I hear about putting a wet newspaper out at night and in the morning they will be hiding in it then you discard it earwigs and all. I tried that but when I check in the morning around 8:30 am the newspaper is all dry. I was thinking about putting a wet newspaper inside a grocery bag hoping it will hold the moisture in better.


Is there other methods to hit them really hard? I was thinking about getting Diatomaceous Earth but not sure it works on them and also a little worried that the DE would also harm the good bugs.

Dillbert
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DE is good for soft-bodied insects, not likely to be a huge success on earwigs.


check this:
https://www.simplepestcontrol.com/earwig-control.htm

I'm not sure I understand exactly how you're using the newspaper trick -

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PunkRotten
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Well the idea with the newspaper is the earwigs would hide in it to keep cool during the day.

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rainbowgardener
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Dilbert, your link wouldn't work for me.

I really like the ghorganics site on natural pest control. Here's what they say about earwigs:

For earwigs we carry: 1600 X-Clude, Diatomaceous Earth, Pyrethrum Spray

Earwigs in general can be considered an ally in the garden as they will eat aphids, insect larvae, snails, and other slow moving bugs. and other pests at night as they are nocturnal. One truly good function of the insect is they eat the eggs of the codling moth which is a serious problem with apple trees. [BUT] When you have an over population of earwigs they can become a nuisance. Generally they will feed on your marigolds and they really go for clematis vines, dahlias, delphiniums, pansies and chrysanthemums. They cause the most trouble June through October.

*A favored control method is spreading diatomaceous earth where they are apt to crawl. Make applications in late spring about a week apart, and treat the soil around the foundations of houses, along walks, fences, and around trees. Botanical insecticides should be used as spot treatments or crack and crevice sprays.

*One possible control in dealing with earwigs is to mix insecticide soap with isopropyl alcohol and spray the infested area every two to three days for two weeks. To make this spray add 1 tablespoon of the alcohol to each quart of insecticide soap.

*Another method is to trap earwigs in pieces of old hose or rolled up newspapers. Check these during day and shake the insects into a bucket of soapy water.

*A very successful method to get rid of earwigs is to take a shallow, straight-sided container and fill it half full with vegetable oil. Clean out the bodies every day and you may reuse the oil as often as you like. We have found that this works particularly well in a greenhouse situation.

*Here's another trap mixture: 1 tbsp vegetable oil, 1 tbsp molasses, 1 tbsp dry yeast, 8 ozs water. Mix all the ingredients well and place in a small plastic container (like a cottage cheese container). Bury the container to ground level. Clean it out as needed.

https://www.ghorganics.com/page9.html#Earwigs:
Twitter account I manage for local Sierra Club: https://twitter.com/CherokeeGroupSC Facebook page I manage for them: https://www.facebook.com/groups/65310596576/ Come and find me and lots of great information, inspiration

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PunkRotten
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Thanks I am gonna try a few of those. I know they can also be helpful but I believe I have an overpopulation. They are causing lots of problems. I don;t have much growing in my garden right now so they are hitting certain plants pretty hard even mature plants. Would a place like Home Depot carry Diatomaceous Earth?

Tonio
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try an organic pet store, Sprouts, Whole fodds etc.

Not sure if you need food grade or not, but thats what I use since we already have some for the cats living quarters to combat fleas. I actually watched a earwig crawl over the line of DE, and it slowed down and squirmed. Poor fella, :wink:

I used damp newspaper- 6 or so sheets, and got about 50 of them early in the morning a few times. Also small plastic foods trays filled with tsp of Dr bronners soap and 1 tsp canola oil mixed with water. Dig in to the soil level. Didn't get much that way, but still helped.

I also used sheets of cardboard close to a few plants, then early morning dragged away, and they followed the shade. They love kale :evil: and almost decimated the whole plant-well actuall they ate 1 plant and 90% of another , and 50 % of another. :x
Also I use some sheets of cardboard strategically to attract them away from plants, toss some immature compost under there and seems to work.

Good luck.

T
San Diego / Z10
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Dillbert
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if you're going to use DE, get the agricultural grade DE.

pool filters stuff (for example) is processed differently and does not have the sharp edges to slice up the little buggers.

the rolled up newspaper is a trap - they like close quarters and dampness to hide during the day. if it is too soggy it collapses, damp is good - wringing wet not so good. if it's drying out you can wrap it in plastic wrap/recycled bags, etc. to keep it moist.

the length of old garden hose trick works too - but you need a bucket of suds when shaking them out. it does have the advantage of seeing how many you're trapping vs. tossing the rolled up paper.

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PunkRotten
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What type of insects will be harmed by the DE? Or what ones will not be harmed if that is easier. What out of the beneficial insects would be safe or harmed?

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rainbowgardener
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The DE does not harm flying things like honeybees. I don't believe it is harmful to earthworms which are big and tough. It will harm most insects that crawl over it, likely including ladybugs and butterfly caterpillars. So if you do use it, be careful to just put it down where there is a specific problem, don't broadcast it over your garden.
Twitter account I manage for local Sierra Club: https://twitter.com/CherokeeGroupSC Facebook page I manage for them: https://www.facebook.com/groups/65310596576/ Come and find me and lots of great information, inspiration

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applestar
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They almost always have bags or canisters of DE at the feed store. That's where I get mine. I understand they put it in animal feed to control mealworms, etc. (i.e. this is the safe kind) It's also said help to de-worm the animals' guts.
pool filters stuff (for example) is processed differently and does not have the sharp edges to slice up the little buggers.
I believe this is incorrect. DE has naturally sharp edges sufficient to cut the buggers, but Pool filter grade DE is heat processed which creates asbestos-like artificial structure that cannot be neutralized by the body and can cause serious harm to lungs if breathed in.

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PunkRotten
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rainbowgardener wrote:The DE does not harm flying things like honeybees. I don't believe it is harmful to earthworms which are big and tough. It will harm most insects that crawl over it, likely including ladybugs and butterfly caterpillars. So if you do use it, be careful to just put it down where there is a specific problem, don't broadcast it over your garden.

See that's a tough one. The earwigs attack almost everything in my garden. I am afraid to put down seedlings cause I think the next day they will be stripped. If I direct seed anything forget it, they eat it the minute it pops up.


So I am probably gonna have to dust most plants. Hopefully not too many ladybugs are harmed.

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