Catalog of Beneficials

 

Nematode Bulletins

 

 

Beneficial Nematodes

 

Beneficial nematodes are microscopic worm-like organisms found naturally in soil. There are many species--good, bad and in-between. Good nematodes kill pests in soil. They work best when soil stays moist, killing in about 48 hours by releasing unique bacteria inside pest larva, hence they are called infective parasitic nematodes. The following species are available commercially in various size packaging and formulations and will attack a broad host range, but use the following guide for which nematode species is best for different systems and pests.

Heterorhabditis bacteriophora (also Nemasys G) can be used in lawn and field conditions in soils at 55º F to 86º F against:


• cucumber, flea, scarab and Japanese beetles, strawberry root and black vine weevil, chafers, white grub, corn root worm, billbug, Colorado potato beetle, Oriental and Japanese beetles


• highly motile, and "cruising" in search of host, thus valuable when the pest is more dispersed


• more potent, because they have a "tooth" to rupture and enter the insect's skin


• twice as good against white grubs compared to S. carpocapse

 

Heterorhabditis marilatus more cold hardy, use on cranberries, black vine weevil, may be more virulent than H. bacteriorphora, inconsistently available, especially in summer.

Heterorhabditis megidis (Nemasys H) is applied April-June and Aug-Nov for black vine weevil when soils are 55º F to 86º F.

 

Heterorhabditis indica more heat tolerant and may be more virulent than H. bacteriorphora, inconsistently available, especially in winter. Temparily unavailable.

 

Steinernema carpocapse (also Millenium) are used in lawn, garden and orchard soils at 55º F to 90º F at 1 billion per acre (less for caterpillars and more for cranberry girdler, mint pests and weevils):


• fleas, codling moth, navel orangeworm, peach tree borer, mint root borer, cranberry girdler, cutworm, armyworm, leafminer, sod web worm, mole cricket, banana moth, other caterpillar pests, termites, bluegrass weevils.


• S. carpocapse wait to ambush a passing host, latch on and crawl through body openings.


• S. carpocapse is the preferred species when hosts are mobile.

Steinernema feltiae (also Nemasys) are used in media at 50º F to 86º F or as a foliar against:


• fungus gnat, shore fly, mushroom gnats, fruit fly, Western flower thrips, leafminer


• biocontrol inhibition of some plant parasitic nematodes, particularly root-knot nematodes


• house flies need 5-10 million nematodes per 25 sq. ft. of manure pile.

 

For high levels of fungus gnats, Steinernema move through rockwool, peat, sawdust or soil growing media without difficulty. They will not reproduce or stay in the growing media and must be reapplied if reinfestation occurs.

 

Follow these steps:

 

Apply nematodes when yellow sticky traps average over 50-75 fungus gnat adults/trap, weekly, or while fungus gnat populations appear to be increasing.

If root diseases are a problem in the crop, apply nematodes sooner to reduce the risk of disease transmission by fungus gnat larvae.

Three applications, 7-10 days apart, are usually required. Follow product label for rates.

Calculate based on actual growing area (i.e., containers or beds) not greenhouse area.

 

Steinernema kraussei (also Nemasys L) are applied June-Sept in turf at 41º F to 86º F against Japanese beetle, European chafer, Masked chafer, Oriental beetle, and black vine weevil. 250 million will treat 5500 square feet.

 

Steinernema riobrave (BioVector) are used at soil temperatures of 50º F to 86º F or as a foliar:


• In citrus against citrus weevil, blue green weevil, borers at 20-40,000 per square foot, 0.5 to 1 billion per acre for fuller rose beetle.
• In turf for mole crickets (or use Steinernema scapterisci, Nematac S).
• black vine weevil and strawberry weevil at 3 billion per acre.
• competes with root knot and sting nematodes.

 

Quantity guidelines
In general beneficial nematodes supplied by Rincon-Vitova are used at around 1 million per 50 square feet and 1 billion per acre, but product labels vary. Release every three to six weeks until infestation subsides. The warmer and more regular the watering system, the lower the required rate. With lower rates, control declines. For example, using H. bacteriophora against Japanese beetle grubs, after three weeks, a billion per acre achieved 85-90% control while half that much resulted in half the control.

 

 Steinernema life cycle

 

from: Steinernematid and Heterorhabditid Nematodes, Southern Cooperative Series Bulletin 331, AK Ag. Exp. Stn., Fayetteville, AK 72701

 

Spot treatments effective for many pests
For control of fleas, applications should be made to areas, which the pet frequents such as feeding and watering sites, beds, or shaded areas. When treating tree pests, treat the drip line area, about one-fifth of the total acreage. For tree bark pests, nematode solutions are injected into borer holes.

 

When and how to apply
Soil temperature should be greater than 45º F to apply all species and warmer for some. At that temperature they will live but not grow very well. When soil reaches 60º F all species will grow and parasitize insects. Late evening or night is ideal and never when the ground is hot and dry. Water dry soils before applying. The best conditions are cloudy, cool weather in spring or late summer while the soil temperatures are below 85º but above 60º F. When using a sprayer, use a course nozzle, remove screens and pressures can be set up to 300 psi. The mixture can also be distributed through an irrigation system.

 

How it comes
Our packaging varies from a moist sponge sealed in a plastic bag, water dispersible granules in trays or in vermiculite or clay particles. Pouches contain a water dispersible granule that you just mix with water. Clay particles (DE) are mixed with water, then the clay falls to the bottom of the container and the nematode suspension poured off. Vermiculite is sprinkled on the soil surface.

 

Directions for mixing
Mix nematodes with water so you can sprinkle or spray them on the ground. Mix only what you will apply today. Use suspended nematodes right away. They will eventually drown in the water. The suspended nematodes survive about three to four hours depending on temperature, oxygen in the water and some other factors. To check viability, examine a drop of the suspension with a hand lens. Live nematodes will be curved and ideally moving in the water drop. If dead, they are straight. To mix only half the quantity from a sponge, cut the smear on the sponge in half, use half and put half back in plastic and return to refrigerator.

 

When nematodes come in a sponge
You will need: source of water, tap water is fine, small container - bowl or small bucket, large bucket - 5 gallon or convenient size, sprinkling can or sprayer. Pour a small amount of water in the small container - about a quart will do. Cut open the bag. Place the sponge in the water and let it sit for 5 minutes. Rinse the plastic bag and pour wash water into the large container. Shake, squeeze, and stretch the sponge, then pour the wash water into the large container. Pour more water into the small container. Place the sponge in the small container and let it sit for 5 more minutes. Shake, squeeze, and stretch again, then pour the wash water from into the large container one last time. Discard the sponge. Dilute nematodes in large container with enough water to easily cover the area to be treated.

 

Agitate solution and keep soil moist
Agitate the water in the container while applying. Moisten the soil with water afterward to help the nematodes move into the soil. Avoid over-watering plants for one week after applying nematodes as they maybe washed out of the media.

 

Easy and safe
Nematodes are easy to use and don’t harm beneficial organisms, such as earthworms. They don’t pollute and are harmless to us and our pets. They are exempt from registration by EPA.

Beneficial Nematode Mixing Directions

 

What You Get Beneficial nematodes arrive packaged in a sponge sealed in a plastic bag, or a white pouch.

To Use Mix nematodes with water so you can sprinkle or spray them on the ground. Mix only what you will apply today. Use suspended nematodes right away. They will eventually drown in the water. The suspended nematodes survive about three to four hours depending on temperature, oxygen in the water and some other factors. To check viability, examine a drop of the suspension with a hand lens. Live nematodes will be moving in the water drop. To mix only half the quantity on a sponge, cut the sponge in half, put half back in the plastic bag and return to refrigerator, wash half.

Wash nematodes from sponge To apply the nematodes you need to wash them out of the sponge in which they travel.

Set up source of water, tap water is fine

small container - bowl, small bucket, whatever

large bucket - 5 gallon or convenient size

sprinkling can or sprayer

 

Washing Pour a small amount of water in the small container - about a quart will do

Cut open the bag.

Place the sponge in the small container and let it sit for 5 - 10 minutes.

Rinse the plastic bag and place wash water in the large container. Dispose of the bag.

Shake, squeeze, and stretch the sponge

Pick up the sponge, and pour the wash water from the small container into the large container.

Pour more water into the small container.

Place the sponge in the small container and let it sit for 5 - 10 minutes.

Shake, squeeze, and stretch the sponge.

Pick up the sponge, and pour the wash water from the small container into the large container.

Discard the sponge.

 

If you received several sponges in your order repeat for other sponges.

The large container now contains (almost - about 98%) all the nematodes.

For soil application use a sprinkling can to sprinkle the suspended nematodes on the soil. Use any quantity of water needed to dilute the nematodes to cover the area to be treated. Then water them into the soil by sprinkling or irrigating the area. Best to apply in the evening or cool part of the day. The soil surface should be moist, if not spray or irrigate the area to be treated before application, apply, then water in. Some have applied nematodes through a drip system.

For example: You want to treat a 1,000 square foot lawn with 1 million nematodes per 50 square feet. (1,000 sq. ft X 1 million/50 sq. ft = 20 million) You have purchased 20 million nematodes. You have washed the sponge(s) into a 5 gallon bucket. Add water to the bucket to bring the volume of the suspension to 5 gallons. Each gallon will treat 200 sq. ft (1,000 sq. ft/5 gal). Mark off a 10 foot by 20 foot area on the lawn. This is 200 square feet. Put 1 gallon of the nematode suspension into a sprinkling can. Add water to fill the can. Sprinkle all the nematode suspension onto the 200 sq. ft area of your lawn. Now you can visually estimate 200 sq. ft areas of your lawn and treat them.

 

For nematodes washed into a 5 gallon container and water added to bring the volume up to 5 gal:

Nematodes

each gallon contains

each gallon treats

5 million

1 million

50 sq. ft

10

2

100

25

5

250

50

10

500

100

20

1,000

 

Aspirator: Nematodes can be delivered through an aspirator that connects to a garden hose. Wash the nematodes into a container. Bring the volume up the a known volume but don’t add a lot of water. If you dilute to one gallon and want to treat 1,000 sq. ft of yard, then 128 oz/5 areas = 25.6 oz would treat 200 sq. ft of yard. Just put this into the spray chamber and water a 200 sq. ft area until the tank is empty. Refill the tank and spray the next 200 sq. ft area

 

Notes: Mixing buckets, sprinkling cans, and sprayers to be used for handling and spreading nematodes should be free of pesticides and toxic chemicals. Nematodes will die if exposed to sunlight or temperatures over 90 F. Keep them out of the sun and as cool as possible without freezing. Agitate suspensions to keep nematodes from settling to the bottom. Stir or aerate if not used within 2 hours.

 

Storage: The moist sponge will keep nematodes alive for 2-3 months in the refrigerator. Take care not to freeze.

 

Equipment: Nematodes can withstand up to 300 psi and can be applied with a wide range of spray equipment. Remove any fine filter screens. Adjust spray nozzles to a large opening.

 

Hygiene: Nematodes are not considered hazardous to humans but take usual sanitary precautions like:

wash your hands after working with suspensions

don’t breath large quantities of spray mist

wear particle mask and goggles if large quantities of mist are generated in application

 

"no hassle" Pouch Package. Simply rinse the nematodes from the pouch into the spray tank

IThe packaging consists of a plastic reclosable bag containing water dispersable granules.

 

Holding Instructions: Hold under refrigeration at 50 F from receipt until application. Avoid placing these packages in direct sunlight before opening. Hb stable for 2-3 weeks at 50 F and Hi stable for 2 weeks at 65 F

If the nematodes must be stored for more than a few hours after receipt, open the shipping box and hold the opened box at 50 F until time of application.

 

Opening Instructions: Remove the white paper pouch that contains the nematodes from the outer plastic bag. Slit open the white paper pouch and simply rinse the nematodes from the inside of the pouch into the spray or injection tank using water that you intend to use for spraying. The granular carrier dissolves in water and will not clog nozzles. There are no other materials inside the pouch.

Disposal is not a problem, the white paper pouch and the sponge-like material are naturally biodegradable and non-toxic. They pose no environmental or disposal problems.

Nematodes are very safe and completely non-toxic to people and pets, but it is prudent to avoid getting the suspension in eyes, wounds, or mouths of other people or yourself. Please keep the package and product out of the reach of children.