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How to Control Earwigs Naturally
They feed at night and look for dark, cool and moist places to hang out during the day. Some common hiding places are under organic matter such as mulch, pine straw, leaf litter and other debris, mulches of loose wood chips, decaying matter, rotting fruit on the ground, wood, boards or tree branches that are on the ground, under dense vine growth or thick cover and flower pots, anything moist that will shade them and protect them from the sun. As well as hiding in piles of firewood you didn’t use last year and let’s not forget hanging out in that little wooded shed you have outside that you haven’t gone into in years. While weevils are scavengers, eating dead insects, decomposing plant materials, they can also eat live plants and damage your vegetables and feed on plant flowers, including marigolds, petunias, hibiscus and many other plants. Earwigs leave many small holes in the leaves and flowers of plants.
Seedlings and most flowering plants can be severely damaged or even killed if you have a large population of earwigs (ground coffee will protect). Earwigs can produce large populations quite quickly and can become a major problem for a homeowner overnight! They are attracted to lights so they will come at night attracted by all the lights on; as well as any lights you have on during the day that will cause them to hang out there, especially if it’s a cold area. Earwigs can be found in most homes and can enter through entry points such as doors and windows, through broken walls and any cracked openings, broken screens. They have a beneficial role in the landscape and have been shown to be important predators of aphids, mites, most insect eggs and most soft-bodied insects such as whiteflies. They have a very unpleasant smell when crushed.
Some natural controls
Tip: cruciferous vegetables are attracted to moisture
Control the water outside the house. Repair any leaks. Convert to a drip system to keep water underground. Control weeds and clean dead debris regularly. Eliminate areas of high humidity around walls, in mulch, under rocks, boards, etc. Control damp damp conditions in crawl spaces, faucets, along foundations. Change the landscape by creating a dry border immediately around the walls of the house. Gravel or flat stones can be an attractive barrier against weevils and other pest invaders. Rain gutters should direct water away from the house. Seal or use weatherproofing at all possible entry points such as doors, windows, pipes, repair screens and doors and windows. Where earwigs are a problem, remove hiding places that have high moisture levels. Start a regular daily trapping program. Eliminating earwig habitat is very important for controlling all insects, including earwigs. Since they are attracted to lights, stop lighting outside at night. Remove the white light and replace it with a yellow LED.
Inside the Home
Indoors, onion rings should be vacuumed daily; be sure to kill them and get rid of them by putting them in a plastic bag and tying them up and throwing them in the trash immediately so they don’t attack again. If earwigs are a regular problem in the building, inspect the area to see how they are entering the house and seal any cracks and entry points. Fix all broken screens.
Essential oil spray
You can make a natural spray that will prevent them from entering the house. Use 1/2 oz per gallon of water of any of the following essential oils available
1. citronella oil
2. cinnamon oil
3. pennyroyal oil
4. clove oil
5. lavender oil
6. citrus fruits
8. any natural essential oil can be used, the above are just a few. Try it yourself.
Citrus spray Use OTKO natural citrus cleaner. Spray straight through the spray. Kills earwigs and most insects on contact. Spray soap Use any natural castile soap such as Dr Bronners soaps. They produce peppermint, lavender, almond, tea tree and many other natural sources. Use 1 oz per gallon of water. It will kill onion rings when sprayed.
DE SPRAY Gadren Grade DE can be added to water and sprayed. The best way is to put some DE in nylons and suspend it in a gallon of water. Let stand, pour into a gallon sprayer and spray. when it dries, it will act as a barrier and kill even the earwigs that crawl on it. You can only use the dust from the area with it.
Vacuum, vacuum and vacuum…
Vacuum all ear mites in the house. Vacuum very thoroughly and as often as necessary. Throw the bags in the trash.
Garden Grade DE can be used as a dust around the house as well as under the house and attic. Lightly flour it and let it rest.
Boric acid can be used as dust in cracks and other areas between the walls of the house.
Traps inside the house are one of the permanent ways to regularly and in the long term fight against voles in the house.
The Ultimate Flea Trap is by far the best insect trap on the market. This one uses no chemicals and just a small light with a sticky backing that traps insects that are attracted to the light. Place one in each room that has ear hairs. It also works on fleas (hence the name), as well as on spiders, cockroaches and most other insects.
Outside the house
Remove materials outside the building perimeter that could serve as hiding places, such as ivy, plant debris, leaves in gutters, piles of scrap wood, old leaves, piles of newspapers or other organic material. Seal and repair cracks, crevices and other openings around the foundation or around the exterior of the home. Manage moisture around the building by repairing or replacing leaky faucets, leaky air conditioners, leaky drains, control water entering the foundation after rain, and provide crawl spaces to allow entry. Fix or change the conditions to encourage a drier environment. Seal and rubber around the neck. Windows. water sockets in bathrooms as well as electrical sockets.
Go through all the areas inside that are dark and hideable. Cardboard boxes will be a great place for them to hang out in the house. Remove any other debris such as old unused firewood. Always keep moisture out of your home by fixing faulty rain gutters, keeping the area graded so that water drains away from the house, and maintaining adequate ventilation in small spaces to keep the area dry.
Earwigs are attracted to outdoor lights, so replace them with yellow LED lights, which are less attractive to ears. The treatment should be done outside with a natural application of garden grade DE around building foundations, flower beds, mulched areas and lawns within a few meters of the building, as well as in crawl spaces in the house. Treat with two feet of tape around the building near the foundation to prevent earwigs from getting inside. Establish a dry border right around the base of the houses for great control.
Traps outside the house
Newspaper: Rolled up wet newspaper tied with a rubber band.
Cardboard box: Punch pencil-sized holes along the bottom edge of the cardboard box.
Old garden hose: 12-24 inch pieces of garden hose
Can of used cat food. Add 1/2 inch of any type of beer or wine.
Tupperware: Use tupperware like a plastic container. Punch holes along the top edge of the tub, add 2 inches of any cheap wine and cover with the top and sink into the ground.
The Finch Bird House can be used as an enclosure to hold an 8 1/2 oz plastic glass filled with beer or wine. I would try one of each and see which appeals to me the most.
Trapping is an effective and simple approach to reducing the population of woodlice.
One of the key elements of a natural lice management program is daily active trapping. Just before dark, place birdfinch traps around the yard in out-of-sight locations. In the morning, shake them out of the traps above a bucket of Dr Bronners soap / water or any natural soap and water. Keep catching until you can’t catch any more walleyes. Traps can be hidden near bushes and ground cover plants or next to the house. For fruit trees, keep weeds, brush, and shoots (always prune) away from the base of the trees year-round because they harbor lice, slugs, and other critters. Monitor populations by counting the number of voles caught in traps.
Remove their habitat:
Changing the habitat around your garden will reduce earwig populations and damage. Get rid of their hiding places: boards, weeds, piles of wood, plant debris, leaf litter and any other items that create dark, damp hiding places. Do not plant dense ground covers, such as ivy, mint, herbs, next to vegetable and flower gardens. Grow vulnerable seedlings indoors until they are able to tolerate chewing. Or start them outside on a table with your feet protected by sticky barriers.
Some people advise against using organic mulch because they say it harbors pests like weevils and spiders. My opinion is the opposite that organic mulch offers aphids a diverse hunting ground that will save your plants but also meet the needs of the soil. Mulch can easily be kept free of earwigs by dusting with garden mulch a few times a year or by dusting just before and after each new layer of mulch is applied. Spraying the mulch with any natural soap will also control them.
The invisible gardener
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