Aerating with Earth worms

Discussion in 'Organic Lawn Care' started by Green Quality, Jan 24, 2004.

  1. Green Quality

    Green Quality LawnSite Member
    Messages: 176

    Does any body know how many worms should be in one sq-ft, in a non chemical treated lawn.and could you add live worms to your lawn as working fertilizer agents.while they aerate?
  2. trying 2b organic

    trying 2b organic LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 566

    topdress with compost, dont use pesticides, build it and they will come.
  3. Interesting thought for you organic people

    Golf course putting greens
    received these treatments:
    fertilized with sythetic fert, ibdu @ 5 lbs n/yr, sulfate potash
    @ 4 applications of insecticide / yr for cutworms
    20-25 applications for disease control

    Had a earth worm problem, would have so many worm casting on putting greens, It was difficult mowing the green, worm casting would build up on rollers, would have to clean-off after each pass.

    I actually research insecticide to see which ones would be harmfull to earthworms! YES, I know all the great benefits of earthworms, but they made it difficult to mow or putt.

    Now, if I wasn't on an organic program, why did I have so many earth worms?
  4. Green Quality

    Green Quality LawnSite Member
    Messages: 176

    My guess would be, the program you applied irritated the earth worm. which in turn brough them to the surface.un-naturally for them to be out during the day,somthing to them was when i,m in a bind for fishing bait. i would pour soap water on the ground .guess what happend they came to the i would assume the earth worm is able to tell when the (ph) is off.a good sign of this is being on top of the surface in day lite.
  5. They weren't out in the day, but theirs earth mounds left behind was the problem.
    If everything I applied is supposed to be so bad, why was the earth worms still alive
  6. Eirik

    Eirik LawnSite Member
    Messages: 38

    I guess what piques my interest more when I read your post is that your "BS" in soil science was just that, and more of a waste of money than all those applications of chemical fert.
    Completely uninteresting however, is your broad-stroke misinformed knowledge of soil.
    I would answer your rhetorical question if I was the one with a degree in "BS".
  7. woodycrest

    woodycrest LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 435

    My observations…

    Highland bent grass greens, in southern Ontario. Average size 1000 sq ft. No irrigation.

    I have same problem with castings clogging up the rollers on the mower, and the lumpy putting surface. Since it is free to play golf, complaints are minimal. ;)

    Each green is different, each has good areas, and bad areas….but through last season the earthworm activity was amazing. The areas that were bad were covered with castings, say 8 for every sqft. The good areas had 2(or less).

    I fertilized with cracked corn in the spring, and mid summer. As the season progressed the bad areas were improving ….as they got better the number of worm castings got lower and lower.
    The best greens now have nearly no worm castings, but the worms are still there, they are in the top inch of the rootzone. They ‘tunnel’ around just under the surface, they constantly aerate. Because they are so close to the surface, they do raise tufts of grass as they tunnel by, but the reel mower snips the tops off and the weight of the roller flattens the turf. The surface is firm, but sucks up water like a sponge.

    My theory is that the piles of castings come from the worms tunneling around deeper in the soil and depositing the castings at the surface. As the condition of the root zone improves, the worm don’t need to come to the surface and they deposit the castings IN the everthickening root zone instead of on the surface. This is only a theory.

    The most important observation here is that as the greens got better the number of castings got smaller.

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