Earthworms in the Yard: Problem or Benefit?

When most people think about earthworms, they think of all the good that they do. Earthworms are very useful for fishermen who can bait their hooks with them, but they are also very useful to plant growth. The presence of Pacific Northwest earthworms shows that the soil is healthy. Earthworms eat dead plant materials and produce earthworm castings, which are nutrient-rich waste products that are one of the best sources of natural fertilizer. earthworms-1

For a farmer or gardener, the presence of earthworm castings is a cause for celebration. It shows that the soil is in wonderful condition, and the plants will thrive due to the fertilizing ability of the earthworm castings. However, the problem comes about when earthworm castings are found in a homeowner’s yard. The presence of earthworm castings can actually damage an otherwise healthy lawn.

The problem with excessive earthworm castings is that they are actually too full of nutrients. When there are too many earthworms in the soil that a lawn grows from, their castings will actually start to burn the lawn due to the overabundance of fertilizer. That is when it is time to practice some proper pest control by using some earthworm management techniques.

Another pest control issue that worms cause for lawns is the presence of worm mounds. Worm mounds are mounds that are created by lots of worm activity in the soil. These mounds can leave a less the desirable aesthetic appearance that can detract from the look of a home’s outdoor areas.

Worm Pest Management

When the presence of worms is causing a problem for homeowners, the first thing to consider is doing nothing. Remember that the worm castings are actually good for the soil. They may cause yellow or brown patches on the grass, but those castings will eventually work their way down into the soil. This will lead to a healthier soil and eventually a healthier lawn.

However, sometimes there are simply too many worms in a yard. There are ways to use pest management to reduce the damage caused by worms. The first step is to stop watering the yard so much. The abundance of moisture in the soil is like heaven for worms. Soil that is dried out will become less hospitable for worms.

Earthworm Removal

It is sometimes a good idea to get rid of excessive worms. Earthworm removal can be easily done by using an electrical device. These earthworm removal probes send a mild electrical current down into the soil. The current drives the worms up to the surface of the soil. Once they are on the surface, the earthworm removal process can begin. Save the worms for fishing or sell them to the local bait shop to make a profit.

Earthworm castings can be dealt with by raking them when they are dry. It is also possible to get them into the soil more quickly by using a roller. It is also a very good idea to leave grass with a high cut when it is mowed to hide the presence of unsightly worm castings. This is one of the smartest methods of earthworm management.

The Key Is to Live in Harmony

The best way to handle pest control and pest management of earthworms is to remember that they are beneficial to the soil. Try to avoid removing earthworms as much as possible. Always remember that earthworms are a sign that the soil is healthy, and rarely should they be a cause for pest control panic. If you have any questions about earthworm management or any other pest control issues, contact the experts at Western Exterminator.

Mr. Little

He’s represented Western for nearly a century. But he’s no old fogey. Follow Mr. Little’s blog for pest tips and facts!

1 Comment

  1. Hello 9/24, I have hundreds of not thousands of jumbo earthworms in my mostly shaded back yard. The ground is very hard, I’m not familiar with the castings you speak of but I have noted some small burros or tunnelings at times. After using lime and the grub prep my lawn starts out green but soon becomes scattered patches of brown and yellowed growth. Your info sites I’m watering too often, I have a caltivater to turn the soil is that a good idea?

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