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HAS ANYONE ELSE NOTICED........

26 comments


Last winter we decided to mulch the garden, read several articles on this subject, and it seemed the right thing to do… it certainly protected our tender plants……….BUT we now have millions of woodlice, and I mean millions, under plants crawling up stems, do you think this has anything to do with the mulching? and will they do any harm to our plants, and do we need to get rid of them?
And another thing a lot of our lilies will not open and we have found a nasty little caterpillar inside…..we have found all sorts of bugs this year, is it the weather? is this how things are going to be this year?

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Oh yuck! I wonder if it is down to the mulch you used. I used bark chippings and consequently have hardly a weed in sight, but the slugs.....ugh! I wonder if the woodlice were in the mulch. Oh, I hate those, I never see them here for some reason..I thought they liked dry conditions not soggy mulchy ones. I was just thinking today, hardly any bees, one butterfly at best, no soldier beetles at all, not a wasp in sight, not a single ladybird...only slugs, aphids and those blasted Earwigs again....lol....aint that the way of it...;)

14 Jun, 2012

 

I think maybe the mulch is decomposing faster due to the wet weather and therefore the woodlice will flourish eating all that matter...They are great composters and doing little or no harm but loads of good.

14 Jun, 2012

 

Pimp so they will not damage the plants then? Karen we used bark........ so no weeds, but as you say loads of slugs and worms, and no butterflies or ladybirds........

14 Jun, 2012

 

Almost never heard of Dotty. They get the blame for clearing up after the vilains. Almost as valuable as earthworms in the garden.

Someone will come on and say they nibble roots of young plants...they don't unless the plant is damaged by other stuff. The Woodlouse is the garden Scapegoat. The bark you use as mulch the Woodlouse is turning to compost.

14 Jun, 2012

 

We have woodlice by the million as well .........thanks for the info Pimp I have always wondered what if any good they did so now I know ...hope that is not the grub of the lily beetle in your lilies, or maybe its a vine weevil grub ,not good news either of them .
Weather is dryer and quite cold with us so not as many slugs & snails (famous last words ?) and some ladybirds ,bees & wasps not so many butterflies yet though:))

14 Jun, 2012

 

Woodlice are great! I am the only person to think them rather sweet :D our natural little composters , they only may eat very fresh new leaves - but usually stay under rocks, wood in dark damp places. I hope we have lots of them - it really helps the garden

15 Jun, 2012

 

I read once that they are related to shrimps.....remind me of tiny armadillo's. GQT on R4 say that they are harmless and clean up the rubbish under thepots and tubs etc.

15 Jun, 2012

 

Now I feel miffed that I 'don't' have the woodlice! :D

15 Jun, 2012

 

Lots of woodlice in my gardens ...

15 Jun, 2012

 

Its funny Dd. we have 'barked' our front garden, in light of the DROUGHT Lol ! and now all i have growing through is clover/oxalis, so I think the seeds were in the bark bag :~(. Bloomin nuisance, I have now got to weed the bark! I must say I mulched a lot of my plants, Gaura and coreopsis and cannot find either! Mind you it is so squidgy in the border, I am leaving it all to dry out! Not noticed woodlice, then i havnt looked that close.

15 Jun, 2012

 

Not seen woodlice .. but not looked so will do ... Got lots bees ...not many b.flies tho ... Peeing down here at mo.. think its come from ur end LOL ... Doing a wedding at mo so really cud do with sunshine .....

15 Jun, 2012

 

Pimpernel, I think they like ripe strawberries, don't they? Or is that an urban myth as well...
I mulched everywhere with soil conditioning compost of different varieties earlier this year - now got weeds I've never had before popping up, worse where I used Wickes multi purpose potting compost as a mulch when I ran out of the other stuff, even bindweed popped up. Just goes to show that potting compost these days isn't sterile... and lord knows what we're importing to our gardens with any mulch or compost we buy...

15 Jun, 2012

 

I'm with Paul on this, I think they are rather cute and as has been said they do a lot of good. Plenty of bees around here, a few butteflies, no wasps so far, and a few damselflies.

Grandmage, with all the rain we've had perhaps the mulch around your gaura and coreopsis rotted them?

15 Jun, 2012

 

Jaykaty= think your right, such a shame, cannot win can you?

15 Jun, 2012

 

Bamboo;

I think that Strawberries either would be over ripe to the mushy stage (could be bruised as well) or damaged by something else like slugs, snails then a louse may have a nibbleor two I guess or accidently knocked by us gardeners.

They have evolved to feed on material that is decaying. I dont believe their mouth is strong enough to tackle healthy plant tissue. I have many hundreds if not thousands of woodlice in my yard and see no damage ever. If they did eat healthy plants they would be a bigger problem than slugs if you think about it ?

15 Jun, 2012

 

Might not the insect pupulation attract insect-eating birds that wouldn't normally visit? Of course, they need to know that there's food on the table for them, or they'll not visit.

I had the same prob, GM, with the garden at DITO - put bark chips down, got a lovely green carpet of soemthing - but only where the bark was laid shaloowly. In other places, we'd laid it on thickly, and had no weeds - I thought that the seeds were in with the bark but they'd not been able to reach down through the thicker layer. Must have been in the bark, cos there was no such infestation in un-barked areas where you'd think the weeds would have an advantage.

15 Jun, 2012

 

You're right Pimpernel, did a bit of research - woodlice do love ripe strawberries, but they can't get into them, so it wants a slug or bird to penetrate the fruit, at which point, they get in there and have a good feast...

15 Jun, 2012

 

Well G O Y ers many thanks for all the information, so I will not worry about the woodlice taking over the world, well our little world, OH said the same, but I had to be sure...
Karen I could box some up to you.......how many would you like?
It is some form of tiny caterpillar eating the lilies, spraying would be useless as it is inside the shell, if you know what I mean....
Not sure we will bother mulching the garden again, for the amount of money it cost, saying that, we do have loads of worms and they are good for the garden are they not? but that was possibly the mushroom compost and the farmyard manure which we also put down....

15 Jun, 2012

 

there is a fantastic eco friendly rubber mulch..

http://www.ecoscape.eu/looserubbermulch.htm

15 Jun, 2012

 

Dottydaisy2, I've just read a blog by Polliesdaylilies entitled Daylily Gall Midge. It seems it's a worm inside the bud, which you should pick off and burn them as the worm will infect your plants. Have a read of it I think you'll find it interesting.

15 Jun, 2012

 

thanks for that link, Pimpernel - though I did blink a bit at their "drop testes"!!!!

15 Jun, 2012

 

I don't think woodlice harm plants, but they do like damp conditions.

15 Jun, 2012

 

Petal thanks, I think that is what we must have, oh dear another bloomin bug.....
Rubber mulch now that is novel....
Hywel well they must be in their element this year, no wonder we have millions.....

15 Jun, 2012

 

Petal have just been on the RHS site, and gall Midge is what we have, they have a list of late varieties that are not so susceptible, needless to say ours are the early ones likely to go down with it....hey ho!! who would be a gardener?

15 Jun, 2012

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