do pesticides kill earthworms?

preppystudJune 17, 2009

i want to buy something to kill the evil pill bugs.

but i am a little worried about the good earthworms?

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Some pesticides are like nuclear bombs to earthworms. Sevin is one of the worst for them.

Other pesticides actually appear to benefit them. Neem oil may be such a pesticide.

If it's pill bugs you want to get rid of then use Spinosad as it is one of the few things effective on them. Here is a link about spinosad. Whlie it isn't considered particularly toxic to worms, it may well be toxic to other soil organisms.

Just the way it goes with most pesticides.

I spose the real question is do you need a pesticide to control the pill bugs? Often it's a cultural issue such as a wood mulch that attracts them in droves. Removing it from the area plants are being bothered in decreases their numbers in the area.

    Bookmark   June 17, 2009 at 4:46PM
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digdirt2(6b-7a No.Cent. AR HZ8 Sun-35)

Since you are re-hashing this issue again, here is a link to all your previous posts on the issues of pillbugs and pesticides.

You'll find that both Spinosad and Sluggo have already been recommended to you in the previous posts and that the effect of pesticides on beneficials in the garden has also been discussed in detail in those posts.


Here is a link that might be useful: Preppyjock's pillbug discussions

    Bookmark   June 17, 2009 at 4:55PM
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oh, really?

good to know. several people on here told me that servin kills pill bugs. and i was tempted to buy it, because it is smaller and cheaper than the sluggo plus.

    Bookmark   June 17, 2009 at 4:58PM
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Sevin kills *everything*. And it's a likely carcinogen, too.

The answer for pillbugs is A) eliminating the cause, and B) any combination of iron phosphate and/or spinosad. Iron phosphate (Sluggo) is the more benign of the two.

And while we're throwing out "what kills what" experience: I can personally vouch for the claims that pyrethrin won't kill earthworms. I had a pot with some plants that became infested and pyrethrined it heavily -- a deep soak. A few days later I transplanted some plants from it and discovered that there were full grown earthworms in the pot -- healthy as a horse.

    Bookmark   June 17, 2009 at 6:07PM
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preppyjock is a classic example of someone fighting nature rather than working with it while gardening.

in the end, it costs preppyjock money, time, and his (and others') health, all when most of preppyjock's 'problems' are either non existent or could be solved in other ways not involving harsh/dangerous chemicals.

    Bookmark   June 17, 2009 at 6:12PM
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steelshepherd(6 OH)

I put Sevin on my silk ficus - it killed it too.

    Bookmark   June 17, 2009 at 7:08PM
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