Springtails are tiny insects that love warm and damp environments. They multiply rapidly, provided that they are exposed to the organic matter in your soil. As a result, you will always find them in your compost or mulch. Read on for more details on how to get rid of springtails in your soil.
What are Springtails?
Springtails are a nuisance in large numbers, and they can hop almost 5 inches. It’s the hoping that gets annoying, and you may want to get rid of it.
In general, getting rid of springtails involves identifying their habitat and spraying it with pesticides. Again, feeding vinegar, bleach, and diatomaceous earth to the soil can get the job done.
However, that’s not all. Once springtails invade your soil, the invasion doesn’t stop. Until the procedures above are initiated properly and preventive methods such as cleaning up littered areas and turning your mulch frequently, you will be running a fool’s errand.
How to identify springtail habitat
Springtail’s food substrate is mainly decaying plant material and fungi. Thus, you are likely to spot them in compost, flower pots, under logs, and other warm-moist zones. They multiply quickly, hence the difficulty when it comes to eliminating them.
Because their population cannot be eradicated entirely, keeping their numbers in check is best.
Get Rid of Springtails in Your Soil
Once you have identified the springtails’ point of origin, the next step is to develop a plan that can help sweep out as many springtails as possible. You can try out either of these methods.
1. Apply insect growth regulator (IGR) to the habitat.
Whereas most insecticides seem to be less effective on springtails, insect growth regulators like Azadirachtin have proven efficacious. It devours the springtails by starving them and inhibiting their metabolism. Also, you can use cedar essential oils that have not been purified.
2. Spray vinegar, followed by a mixture of detergent and water.
When sprayed directly on a springtail, it causes severe burns that kill the insect. Also, you can take a piece of cloth, soak it in vinegar, and apply it to the infested zones.
After the vinegar has taken effect, you must pour a soapy water mixture on the infested surfaces. The mixture will soak up and burn any remaining springtails.
3. Spray the infested areas with bleach.
Bleach is a tougher option for resilient springtails. Its corrosiveness quickly eliminates large numbers of pests. However, it is most effective in soil areas devoid of vegetation.
4. Feed your soil with diatomaceous earth.
Diatomaceous earth is a blend of sedimentary rock with fossilized phytoplankton. When springtails cross through the mixture, the sharp edges cut through them.
This, in turn, causes dehydration and death in the long run. If at all feasible, apply this solution to dry soil. If the ground is too wet, diatomaceous earth might evaporate through the soil rather than rest on its surface.
The powder can be dusted on springtail nest sites if you discover them. Should springtails come into contact with it, they will be drained of their lipids. Be sure to use diatomaceous earth that is silica-free and food grade. Inhalation of this latter substance is hazardous.
Turn over your mulch and compost regularly.
Springtails like to make their nests in garbage and compost heaps. Particularly if there’s a lot of dampness in them, you may expose their larvae to hotter settings by turning over the compost regularly. Consequently, this will disrupt their breeding cycle.
Properly dispose of fallen leaves.
It’s critical to clear up any parts of your lawn where foliage collects. Springtails like to build their nests amid damp, decaying trash. Ensure you dump all your trash and fallen leaves into a compost pile.
Your bin should also be fitted with a tight cover. A compost tumbler should be used to turn and aerate decaying litter. Remember to turn your compost regularly with a gardening fork if it is an open pile. Doing so speeds up the decomposition process and keeps the springtail count in check.
Get Rid of Springtails in Your Soil: Conclusion
Okay, ladies and gentlemen, infestation from springtails in small numbers isn’t so perturbing, but it gets worse if the numbers spike. They will start looking everywhere and even find their way inside your house. You have to act fast and enact the above procedures.
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