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Advice on controlling casting worms in turf

Earthworm Cast TreatmentWorm casts on any sports or amenity turf surface can cause severe problems for more than one reason.

Soil deposited on the turf surface will quickly clock up and stick to the moving parts of cylinder and rotary mowers and also accumulate around rollers and wheels.

Soil wrapping around rollers will interfere with the required height of cut by effectively lifting the mower above the grass meaning that the cylinder and bottom blade are artificially higher and as a result, inconsistent grass height happens.

Soil is also abrasive and if a machine is constantly forced to work in far from ideal conditions, sharpening and maintenance or even part replacement costs can occur.

Worm casts are also an ideal weed seed bed; even if you switch or brush greens and fairways, seeds, blown around by the wind will germinate in the soil leading to further remedial maintenance.

At Weed Free, we highly recommend preventative maintenance in advance of anticipated worm activity. Higher than normal casting activity can occur directly after heavy rain and when soil temperatures are still fairly high.

The ideal time for worm control is at the very end of the summer leading into the autumn when rainfall and humid temperatures are expected.

Carbendazim is the only effective control product that is available to turf care professionals, and can be mixed with Chlorpyifos for the treatment of Leatherjackets (cranefly larvae) - sometimes a wetting agent is used to aid passage of the product through the soil structure.

Further reading: Worms casts in lawns - the facts

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