We have Cutworms - what do I do ???
June 8th, 2011
My plants are cut off at the soil soon after they are planted .. I think maybe I have cutworms. What do I do ???
Yes it cetainly sounds like you have cutworms. The larva of the cut worm is a 1 - 2" grey-dull brown ,greasy looking caterpillar with a shiny head.At night the caterpillar feeds on stems of vegetable and flower seedlings and transplants near the soil line,severing them or completely consuming small seedlings.During the day they rest below the soil surface curled beside plant stems.The adult is a brown or grey moth - some over winter as pupa and some as eggs - hatching from early May to early June and begin feeding.
1 - Veggie Guard - Canadian Beneficial Nematodes applied at time of planting. First water your plants in and then apply Veggie Guard ( following instructions) around the base of each plant followed by applying a moist mulch to keep the soil wet as the nematodes use the water to travel through the soil to reach the cut worms. Be sure to keep the mulch moist as nematodes will die without moisture
2 - Put collars around the transplant stems at planting - pushing collars well into the soil.
3 - One week before planting scatter bran mixed with BTK and molasses over surface of beds .
3 - Set out plants later in the season to avoid damage.