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How to Kill Earthworm Pests

By Meg Butler ; Updated September 21, 2017
Earthworms can be beneficial insects or pests.

Earthworms help a garden grow. But they can also make lawns a nightware. Earthworms produce castings, small piles of slimy, digested earth. These castings, if present in large enough numbers, can be a real problem. They are slippery and unsettling to tread on with bare feet, they make lawnmower blades dull, they encourage weed growth and they leave ugly brown piles all over otherwise attractive lawns. Unfortunately, there are no vermicides prescribed for use on earthworms on the market in 2010. However, carbamate-based pesticides used to kill grubs will kill earthworms as well.

Add the manufacturer-recommended amount of pesticide and water into your lawn sprayer. (For example, Sevin Grubout, a popular carbamate grub killer requires 5 tablespoons of pesticide mixed with 5 gallons of water.)

Water your lawn with 1 to 2 inches of water.

Spray the entire amount of pesticide in your lawn sprayer evenly over the entire lawn.

Water your lawn again, with 1 to 2 inches of water.

Spray your lawn again, as necessary until the worm population is eradicated or reduced to an acceptable number.

 

Things You Will Need

  • Carbamate pesticide
  • Lawn sprayer

Tips

  • Lawns with poor drainage are prone to an abundance of earthworms.
  • Popular carbamate pesticides include Tucam (bendiocarb), Sevin (carbaryl) and Baygon (propoxure).

About the Author

 

Based in Houston, Texas, Meg Butler is a professional farmer, house flipper and landscaper. When not busy learning about homes and appliances she's sharing that knowledge. Butler began blogging, editing and writing in 2000. Her work has appered in the "Houston Press" and several other publications. She has an A.A. in journalism and a B.A. in history from New York University.