So goes the wires of our worms

I dont mean to draw out this issue we have with wireworms but it really fascinates me. I have such surprises when I come upon what this little one inch, tannish, insect does to the stuff on our farm. For instance, we put out some "test tubers" in the fields to see how many of them would be attracted. You see, they really, really prefer potatoes over anything else. Its an easy way to see how bad they are. Look at this spud below after only a few days in the ground...

And this is just one! Imagine a whole field of potatoes, the ones we grow just for all your CSA'ers, getting munched on by these things. Its devastating. And the real bummer of this all is that about the only way to get rid of them is to let loose a herd of pigs to root them up (we are working on this method).

And then there is the issue of how we make our potting mix. We make a mixture of coconut coir, compost and soil. Well, the soil has wireworms in it and every once in awhile one makes its way into a pot. In the below example on the left is a what happens to an eggplant when it is invaded with a wireworm and on the right is a healthy one.
Needless to say the plant is not going to make it. The wireworm has munched its way into the stem of the plant and made it a feast fit for a, well, an insect in its larval form of about the size of the stem.

Note: we are in process of getting in touch with the garden fairies to discuss this issue with the wireworms and hope to work out an amicable deal of percentage of loss to them in exchange for us to let them be in their space. I am counting on 10% but I think they may want 15%. Will keep you informed.

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