How to Apply Nematodes to Control Grubs

How to Apply Nematodes to Control Grubs

Garden Guide Categories:

For any lawn enthusiast the white grub is public enemy #1! The brown patches they leave on your lawn are an eyesore that are just ugly. Fight grubs naturally with beneficial nematodes, naturally occurring microscopic worms that prey on grubs. An enemy of my enemy is my friend!

What Are They?

Beneficial Nematodes are a naturally occurring microscopic worm found around the globe in soils. Nematodes hunt and feed on soil dwelling insects by entering their body, injecting them with lethal bacteria, and feeding from their insides. The toxin usually kills the host insect within a day or two. To complete the lifecycle, they also lay their offspring in the dead grub (or other pest). There are different kinds of nematodes for targeting different turf insects, but we carry the nematodes that go after grubs!

Keeping & Using Nematodes

Nematodes are super easy to use, require very little work and no sprays! You get a whopping 10 million nematodes in an individual package. That will cover an area between 2000-3000 square feet (based on a heavy or light application rate). They are shipped in a powdery solution that mixes well in water. Be sure to keep your nematodes in the fridge (but not frozen) and apply as soon as possible for best results. They are a living insect so the longer you wait the less effective they will be (they can die if you wait too long). Do not use nematodes at are past their expiration date. You can apply them using a watering can, sprayer and hose attachment or misting system. It’s a good idea to apply your nematodes during low light periods (morning or evening are best).

It is very important that you mix and apply your nematodes quickly so they don’t ‘expire’ in the can. You want to insure the nematodes have a chance to get into the soil before the water is evaporated. If possible, you should water your lawn or apply after a light rain for best penetration. Avoid applying to over-saturated soil as nematodes will simply wash away and avoid applications when your soil temperature is below 10°C / 50°F if you’re using local, Canadian grown nematodes (15°C / 60°F for imported nematodes).

Using a hose end sprayer applicator will be applying nematodes very easy, just mix a concentration, fill your applicator and spray out nematodes until the jar is empty. Refill applicator until all your concentrated nematode solution has been applied. If you have an applicator which refills your jar as you spray mix a tea bag in with your nematode concentration. This will turn your concentration a tea colour and when the concentration is diluted clear you know you’ve run out of nematodes.

There are two periods when grubs can be targeted by nematodes, in the spring when soil temperatures are above 10°C (often early May to early June) and again in the fall before soil gets too cold (mid-late September to mid October). During those times the insects are in a life cycle where grubs are in the soil and can be targeted. The best time is in the fall when the grubs are smaller but the most common time is in the spring. Best practice is applying during both to get best coverage and protection!

Lastly, always read the expiry date and apply before they go bad because dead nematodes don’t work and it’s very hard to see if they are alive or not. Don’t chance it, deal with them right away.

Application Video

There is a great video that shows how to apply nematodes using a hose end sprayer that is available at Heeman’s. You can watch this video here.

Nematode land: how to deal with a dangerous pest


Biological Control Of Pest Insects With Nematodes. Beneficial Nematodes naturally occur in soil and are used to control soil pest insects and whenever larvae or grubs are present. Like all of our products, it will not expose humans or animals to any health or environmental risks. Beneficial nematodes only attack soil dwelling insects and leave plants and earthworms alone. The beneficial nematodes enters the larva via mouth, anus or respiratory openings and starts to feed. This causes specific bacteria to emerge from the intestinal tract of the nematode. These spread inside the insect and multiply very rapidly. The bacteria convert host tissue into products which can easily be taken up by the nematodes. The soil dwelling insect dies within a few days. Beneficial nematodes are a totally safe biological control in pest insects. The Beneficial nematodes are so safe the EPA has waived the registration requirements for application.

NATURE’S BEST WAY OF KILLING Grubs and Japanese Beetles. We ship Beneficial Nematodes to USA and Canada. For USA visit our website: or call 520-298-4400 for more information.

Though they are harmless to humans, animals, plants, and healthy earthworms, beneficial nematodes aggressively pursue insects. The beneficial nematodes can be used to control a broad range of soil inhabiting insects and above ground insects in their soil inhabiting stage of life. More than 200 species of pest insects from 100 insect families are susceptible to these nematodes. When they sense the temperature and carbon dioxide emissions of soil-borne insects, beneficial nematodes move toward their prey and enter the pest through its body openings. The nematodes carry an associated bacterium (Xenorhabdus species) that kills insects fast within 48 hours. The bacteria is harmless to humans and other organisms and cannot live freely in nature. Several generations of nematodes may live and breed within the dead insect, feeding on it as a food source. When the food source is gone, they migrate into the soil in search of a new host. When the pest population is eliminated, the beneficial nematodes die off and biodegrade. Beneficial nematodes are so effective, they can work in the soil to kill the immature stages of garden pests before they become adults.

Beneficial nematodes infest grubs and other pest insects that are known to destroy lawns and plants.

The Nematodes are effective against grubs and the larval or grub stage of Japanese Beetles, Northern Masked Chafer, European Chafer, Rose Chafer, Fly larvae, Oriental Beetles, June Beetles, Flea beetles, Bill-bugs, Cut-worms, Army worms, Black Vine Weevils, Strawberry Root Weevils, Fungus Gnats, Sciarid larvae, Sod Web-worms, Girdler, Citrus Weevils, Maggots and other Dip-tera, Mole Crickets, Iris Borer, Root Maggot, Cabbage Root Maggot and Carrot Weevils.

See also:  Dog Ticks vs Deer Ticks: What You Need to Know, Backyard Defenders

Beneficial nematodes belong to one of two genera: Steinernema and Heterorhabditis are commercially available in the U.S. Steinernema is the most widely studied beneficial nematode because it is easy to produce. Heterorhabditis is more difficult to produce but can be more effective against certain insects, such as the white grubs, and Japanese beetles.

How beneficial nematodes work: The life cycle of beneficial nematodes consists of six distinct stages: an egg stage, four juvenile stages and the adult stage. The adult spends its life inside the host insect. The third juvenile stage, called a dauer, enters the bodies of insects (usually the soil dwelling larval form. Some nematodes seek out their hosts, while others wait for the insect to come to them. Host seeking nematodes travel through the soil the thin film of water that coats soil particles. They search for insect larvae using built-in homing mechanisms that respond to changes in carbon dioxide levels and temperature. They also follow trails of insect excrement. After a single nematode finds and enters an insect through its skin or natural openings, the nematode release a toxic bacteria that kills its host, usually within a day or two. In less than two weeks the nematodes pass through several generations of adults, which literally fill the insect cadaver. Steinernema reproduction requires at least two dauer nematodes to enter an insect, but a single Heterorhabditis can generate offspring on its own. The nematodes actively searches for insect larvae. Once inside the larva the nematodes excretes specific bacteria from its digestive trac before it starts to feed. The bacteria multiply very rapid and convert the host tissue into products that the nematodes take up and use for food. The larva dies within a few days and the color changes from white-beige to orange-red or red-brown. The nematodes multiply and develop within the dead insect. As soon as the nematodes are in the infectious third stage, they leave the old host and start searching for new larvae. Infected grubs turn color from white-beige to red brown 2-4 days after application and becomes slimy. After a few weeks, dead larvae disintegrate completely and are difficult to find.

Beneficial nematodes are also very effective against termites, German cockroaches, flies, ant, and fleas.

Beneficial Nematodes are very easy to use. Mix with water and spray or sprinkle on the soil along garden plants or lawn. Put the contents of the Beneficial nematodes in a bucket of water and stir to break up any lumps, and let the entire solution soak for a few minutes. Application can be made using a water-can, irrigation system, knapsack or sprayer. On sprayer use a maximum pressure to avoid blockage, all sieves should be removed. The sprayer nozzle opening should be at least 1/2 mm. Evenly spread the spraying solutions over the ground area to be treated. Continuous mixing should take place to prevent the nematodes from sinking to the bottom. After application keep the soil moist during the first two weeks for the nematodes to get establish. For a small garden the best method is using a simple sprinkling or water can to apply the Beneficial nematodes to the soil. Apply nematodes before setting out transplants; for other pest insects, Japanese Beetles and grubs, apply whenever symptomatic damage from insects is detected. Best to apply water first if soil is dry.Application and amount for 50 and 100 Mil. Nematodes. The 50 Mil. + nematodes are packed in an inert carrying material that will dissolve in water when mixed. You can use a watering can, pump sprayer; hose end sprayer and irrigation system, backpack sprayers, or motorized sprayer. The 10 Mil. 50 Mil. and 100 Mil. Nematodes mix 1 teaspoon per gallon of water. The Large yard size: 1/2 Acre Size (50 Million) you can use up to 40 Gallons of water The Acre size 100 Mil. Nematodes you can use up to 100 Gallons of water. Evenly spread the solution over the ground areas to be treated. Continuous mixing should take place to prevent the nematodes from sinking to the bottom of the container. To avoid blockages, remove all filters from the sprayer. You can sprinkle the soil with water again after application to move the nematodes into the soil. Apply nematodes as soon as possible for best product performance. Keep the soil most for the first week after application.

Proper storage and handling is essential to nematode health.

Always follow the package instructions for the best method of mixing nematodes. Formulations vary depending on the species and target insect. Nematodes can be stored in the refrigerator up to a month (not the freezer) before they are mixed with water, but once the nematodes are diluted in water, they cannot be stored. Also, nematodes shouldn�t be stored in hot vehicles, or left in spray tanks for long periods of time.

Nematodes need moisture in the soil for movement (if the soil is too dry or compact, they may not able to search out hosts) and high humidity if they are used against foliage pests. Watering the insect-infested area before and after applying nematodes keeps the soil moist and helps move them deeper into the soil. Care should be taken not to soak the area because nematodes in too much water cannot infect.

Exposure to UV light or very high temperatures can kill nematodes. Apply nematodes in the early evening or late afternoon when soil temps are lower and UV incidence is lower as well (cloudy or rainy days are good too). Nematodes function best with soil temperatures between 48F� and 93F� day time temperatures.

Application is usually easy.

In most cases, there is no need for special application equipment. Most nematodes species are compatible with pressurized, mist, electrostatic, fan and aerial sprayers! Hose-end sprayers, pump sprayers, and watering cans are effective applicators as well. Nematodes are even applied through irrigation systems on some crops. Check the label of the nematode species to use the best application method. Repeat applications if the insect is in the soil for a longer period of time. There is no need for masks or specialized safety equipment. Insect parasitic nematodes are safe for plants and animals (worms, birds, pets, children). Because they leave no residues, application can be made anytime before a harvest and there is no re-entry time after application.

How to use beneficial nematodes:

For the home gardener, localized spraying is probably the quickest and easiest way to get the nematodes into the soil. Producers ship beneficial nematodes in the form of dry granules, powder type clay, and sponges. All of these dissolve in water and release the millions of nematodes. Each nematode ready to start searching for an insect in your lawn or garden. Nematodes should be sprayed on infested areas at the time when pests is in the soil. Timing is important, or else you will have to repeat the application. Northern gardeners should apply the nematodes in the spring, summer and fall, when the soil contains insect larvae. Most of the beneficial nematodes are adaptive to cold weather. In fact , the very best time to control white grubs is in the spring and fall. If your in a warmer climate, beneficial nematodes are effective all year.

See also:  How to Get Rid of Millipedes, Treat for Millipedes

Fertilizers should be avoided roughly 2 weeks prior to and after nematode application, because they may be adversely affected by high nitrogen content.

Some pesticides work well with nematodes when their mutual exposure is limited while other pesticides may kill nematodes. Check labels or specific fact sheets to find out. Some chemicals to avoid are bendiocarb, chlorpyrifos, ethoprop, and isazophos. Fungicides to avoid are anilazine, dimethyl benzyl, ammonium chloride, fenarimol, and mercurous chloride. The herbicides, 2,4-D and trichlopyr and nematicide, fenamiphos, should be avoided as well.

During hot weather release nematodes in the evening or afternoon when temperature is cooler. Release once or twice a year or until infestation subsides. Nematodes are shipped in the infectious larvae stage of their life cycle and can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 4 weeks. Always release very early in the morning or late in the late afternoon. Why are these organisms beneficial?

Beneficial nematodes seek out and kill all stages of harmful soil-dwelling insects. They can be used to control a broad range of soil-inhabiting insects and above-ground insects in their soil-inhabiting stage of life.

Parasitic nematodes are beneficial for eliminating pest insects. First, they have such a wide host range that they can be used successfully on numerous insect pests. The nematodes’ nonspecific development, which does not rely on specific host nutrients, allows them to infect a large number of insect species.

Nematodes enter pest bugs while they are still alive, then they multiply inside the bugs (which eventually die) and finally burst out of the dead bodies. The number of nematodes inside a single bug (depending on the species) ranges from 5,000 to 10,000. Although you can barely see one young nematode with your naked eye, large groups of these tiny wigglers pouring out of the dead insects are easy to see. Then the nematodes wriggle off to find other insects to «invade,» starting the whole cycle all over again.

Second, nematodes kill their insect hosts within 48 hours. As mentioned earlier, this is due to enzymes produced by the Xenorhabdus bacteria.

Also, the infective juveniles can live for some time without nourishment as they search for a host.

Finally, there is no evidence that parasitic nematodes or their symbiotic bacteria can develop in vertebrates. This makes nematode use for insect pest control safe and environmentally friendly. The United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has ruled that nematodes are exempt from registration because they occur naturally and require no genetic modification by man. Beneficial nematodes can be an excellent tool in the lawn and garden to control certain pest insects. They can be used with organic gardening and are safe for kids and pets.


What is a nematode? Nematodes are microscopic, whitish to transparent, unsegmented worms. They occupy almost every conceivable habitat on earth, both aquatic and terrestrial, and are among the most common multicelled organisms. Nematodes are generally wormlike and cylindrical in shape, often tapering at the head and tail ends; they are sometimes called roundworms or eelworms. There are thousands of kinds of nematodes, each with their particular feeding behavior — for example, bacterial feeders, plant feeders, animal parasites, and insect parasites, to name a few.

Insect-Parasitic Nematodes. Traditionally, soil-inhabiting insect pests are managed by applying pesticides to the soil or by using cultural practices, for example, tillage and crop rotation. Biological control can be another important way to manage soil-inhabiting insect pests. A group of organisms that shows promise as biological control agents for soil pests are insect-parasitic nematodes. These organisms, which belong to the families Steinernematidae and Heterorhabditidae, have been studied extensively as biological control agents for soil-dwelling stages of insect pests. These nematodes occur naturally in soil and possess a durable, motile infective stage that can actively seek out and infect a broad range of insects, but they do not infect birds or mammals. Because of these attributes, as well as their ease of mass production and exemption from EPA registration, a number of commercial enterprises produce these nematodes as biological «insecticides.»

How to order Beneficial Nematodes: All nematodes are not the same. Buglogical nematodes are more tolerant of high tempertures than any other brands. It is best to order biological control nematodes and have them delivered directly to you from a reliable source.. This helps insure that the nematodes you are buying are still alive. Nematodes do not live very long in storage. Therefore, buying nematodes that are stocked on a store shelf is very risky.

Suppliers: Buglogical Control Systems, Inc. PO Box 32046, Tucson, AZ 85751-2046 Phone: 520-298-4400

Monitor the health of your community here

More Articles

Parasitic Nematodes in Humans

Parasitic nematodes (worms) in humans can be found in the intestines, muscles and other tissues. More people around the world have a nematode infection than any other parasitic infection 2. People can get infected with various nematodes through several ways: ingestion of the eggs, skin penetration by the larva or through the bite of an infected vector.

If you are experiencing serious medical symptoms, seek emergency treatment immediately.

Ascaris Lumbricoides

According to the Global Network in 2010, more than 807 million people worldwide are infected with the giant intestinal roundworm, Ascaris lumbricoides. The adult worm is typically pinkish-white, smooth and can grow to a length of 35 cm. People generally get infected with this parasite by ingestion of the worm’s eggs (ova) through contaminated food, water or soil (hand-to-mouth transmission). The eggs are found in soil for many years because they are very resistant to environmental conditions.

Pathology of infections of A. lumbricoides can occur from either migration of the larvae though the lungs or from the adult worms in the intestine. Many people who are infected are asymptomatic, and pathology depends on the amount of worms. Heavy infections of Ascaris can lead to serious conditions, such as intestinal obstruction. Ascaris lumbricoides infection is typically diagnosed by microscopically finding the characteristic eggs in feces.

Enterobius Vermicularis

The most common nematode infection in the United States is the pinworm, Enterobius vermicularis. It is particularly common in children. The adult pinworm is thread-like and grows to a length of up to 13 mm, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). The female pinworm leaves the anus at night to deposit her eggs. People get infected through ingestion of the infective eggs.

Infection with Enterobius vermicularis is relatively mild and is usually associated with rectal itching and discomfort. Rarely, in young girls, the adult females leave the anus and accidentally migrate to the vagina and cause vaginitis.

Diagnosis is by observing the eggs on a pinworm paddle. The paddle is pressed on the perianal area, and if eggs are present, they stick to the paddle. This procedure is performed first thing in the morning before bathing or bowel movements. The paddle is then examined microscopically for characteristic eggs.

See also:  Read Download Cockroaches PDF – PDF Download

Trichuris Trichiura

Like Ascaris, the whipworm, Trichuris trichiura, is another very common soil-transmitted nematode. The adult is characterized by a «whip-like» appearance. Trichuris is spread through hand-to-mouth transmission.

The effects of whipworm infection can range from relatively harmless to quite serious. Heavy infections of whipworm can produce bloody diarrhea, anemia and rectal prolapse. Infections with Ascaris and Trichuris in the United States are more common in the south in areas with a warm, moist climate.

Diagnosis is based on finding the characteristic eggs in fecal samples.


Hookworms are the second most common intestinal nematode found worldwide. People become infected through skin penetration by the hookworm larvae. Hookworm disease, like most nematode infections, is based on the amount of worms present. Hives and rash are generally seen at the point where the larvae penetrates the skin.

During larval migration through the lungs, a cough and bloody sputum are usual symptoms. The adult hookworm’s ability to suck blood when attached to the intestines can cause serious medical problems. Heavy infections can result in enough blood loss to result in anemia.

Finding the hookworm egg in a fecal examination is the basis of lab diagnosis.

Trichinella Spiralis

Trichinella spiralis, the cause:

  • of trichinosis
  • was once common in the United States
  • but with laws that require cooking garbage fed to pigs
  • better pest control around pig pens
  • only a few dozen infections occur in the United States annually

These few infections are usually due to hunters eating wild game they caught without cooking it thoroughly. After eating infected raw or undercooked meat, the larvae is released in the stomach, where it migrates to encapsulate in tissue, usually muscle.

Parasitic nematodes in humans can be found in the intestines, muscles and other tissues. People generally get infected with this parasite by ingestion of the worm’s eggs through contaminated food, water or soil . Ascaris lumbricoides infection is typically diagnosed by microscopically finding the characteristic eggs in feces. It is particularly common in children. People get infected through ingestion of the infective eggs. The paddle is then examined microscopically for characteristic eggs. Diagnosis is based on finding the characteristic eggs in fecal samples. Hookworm disease, like most nematode infections, is based on the amount of worms present. Hives and rash are generally seen at the point where the larvae penetrates the skin.

What Are Nematodes? These Tiny Parasites Can Help — Or Hurt — Your Garden

Here’s how to get more of the good kind and ditch the bad.

While most of the thousands of nematode species on Earth are not harmful, some cause diseases in humans and other animals or attack and feed on living plants. Luckily, there are ways to deter these pesky pests from disrupting your garden soil.

The few parasitic species of these translucent, unsegmented worms measure about 1/50 inch long and cause root knots or galls, injured root tips, excessive root branching, leaf galls, lesions or dying tissue, and twisted, distorted leaves. Plants most commonly attacked at the roots include cherry tomatoes, potatoes, peppers, lettuce, corn, and carrots. Plants that sustain leaf and stem system injury include chrysanthemums, onions, rye, and alfalfa.

What Are Nematodes?

Often referred to as roundworms, nematodes are not closely related to true worms. They are multicellular insects with smooth, unsegmented bodies. The nematode species that feed on plants are so tiny that you need a microscope to see them. The adults often look long and slender, although some species appear pear-shaped. These plant parasites are not the same roundworms as the filarial nematodes that infect the human body, spread diseases, and wreak havoc on the immune system.

Some nematodes feed on the outer surfaces of a plant while others burrow into the tissue. Soil-dwelling nematodes are the most common culprits, but some species can damage plant roots, stems, foliage, and flowers.

No matter where they feed, these tiny worms can seriously damage to crops with their sharply pointed mouths by puncturing cell walls. The real damage occurs when a nematode injects saliva into a cell from its mouth and then sucks out the cell contents. The plant responds to the parasitic worms with swelling, distorted growth, and dead areas. Nematodes can also carry viruses and bacterial diseases inject them into plants. The feeding wounds they make also provide an easy entrance point for bacteria and fungi.

Beneficial nematodes that enrich the soil may feed on the decaying material, insects, or other nematodes.

What Nematodes Look Like

Unlike most other disease-causing organisms, plant-parasitic nematodes seldom produce any characteristic symptoms. Most of the symptoms that do appear are vague and often resemble those caused by other factors — such as viruses, nutrient deficiencies, or air pollution. Nematodes feeding aboveground may cause twisted and distorted leaves, stems, and flowers.

If nematodes are feeding on the roots, a plant may look yellowed, wilted, or stunted and infected food crops will usually yield poorly. If you suspect worm injury to roots, carefully lift one of the infected plants and wash off the roots for easier inspection. If nematodes are causing damage, you may see small galls or lesions, injured root tips, root rot, or excessive root branching.

How They Spread

Whether they feed above or below ground, most nematodes spend at least part of their life cycle in the soil. While they can’t move very far under their own power, they can swim freely in water and they move more quickly in moist soil — so it’s a good idea to keep your soil well-drained. They also spread by anything that can carry particles of infested soil, including tools, boots, animals, and infected plants.

What About Beneficial Nematodes?

Beneficial nematodes can range from 1/25 inch to several inches long and have slender, translucent, unsegmented bodies. Their roles in the garden vary. Some are soil dwellers that break down organic matter, especially in compost piles. You can easily spot these 1/4-inch-long decomposers.

These types actually combat a variety of pest species, including weevils, clearwing borers, cutworms, sod webworms, chinch bugs, and white grubs. Nematodes attack and kill these insects by either injecting deadly bacteria or entering the host, parasitizing, and then feeding on it.

Whenpurchasing and applying them to your garden, it is very important to select the right species because different kinds of nematodes are effective against different pests. In addition, nematodes require moist, humid conditions and fairly warm soil to do their job well. Water all application sites before and after spreading nematodes and follow application instructions carefully.

No comments

Добавить комментарий

Your e-mail will not be published. All fields are required.