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How to deal with Wood Lice in pots

Has anyone any ideas on how to rid Potted plant of wood lice from the soil.  I just don't seem to be able to deal with the problem.  They are everywhere in my garden.  They seem to get into the roots and breed.  They then eat the roots of some of the plants and even come up out of the soil to eat flowers and had a good feed on the strawberries this summer.

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  • pansyfacepansyface PEAK DISTRICT DerbyshirePosts: 17,446

    You need to encourage these little fellas, the woodlouse spider.

    image

     

    Apophthegm -  a big word for a small thought.
  • Thanks for your reply, but I don't like the sound of that, I have more than my share of the Garden Spider, and I really don't like spiders, although I wouldn't want to kill them as I know they do good in the garden.

    Where does the woodlouse spider come from?  How do you introduce them into the garden?

    It all sounds a bit iffy to me.

  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Central Norfolk UKPosts: 64,438

    Woodlice do little significant damage, although they are often found where damage has been done by other creatures.  They're useful in the garden as they help break down organic matter in the composting process. 

    Here's what the RHS says about them https://www.rhs.org.uk/advice/profile?PID=723

    Damage to roots and leaves is often caused by Vine Weevils - have you checked for them?

    “I am not lost, for I know where I am. But however, where I am may be lost.” Winnie the Pooh







  • pansyfacepansyface PEAK DISTRICT DerbyshirePosts: 17,446

    Wherever you have woodlice you'll have these. They only eat woodlice. We have several in our old cellar, some more in the greenhouse and quite a few under the sheds.

    Apophthegm -  a big word for a small thought.
  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Central Norfolk UKPosts: 64,438

    Re the Woodlouse Spider - if you have woodlice then you'll have the spider - they like the same conditions - leave them alone and they'll maintain a balance - of course, they won't eat them all - that wouldn't be in their interest as it's all that they eat.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Woodlouse_spider

    “I am not lost, for I know where I am. But however, where I am may be lost.” Winnie the Pooh







  • Many thanks, but I cant say I have seen any spiders that look like them.  

    Dovefromabove has suggested it may be vine weevils that are doing the damage but what do they look like.  As you may tell I am quite new to this garden business.

  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Central Norfolk UKPosts: 64,438

    Ah, vine weevils are the bane of the gardener's life, whereas woodlice are quite good chaps really, although as Verdun says, they probably nibble a few seedlings etc - they have to eat something don't they image  but not enough to make them a pest.

    Adult Vine weevils eat notches out of the edges of leaves, like this

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     The adults look like this

    image

     

     The grubs live in the soil and eat the roots of plants - they particularly love plants in pots and primulas are a favourite, although they'll eat lots of others too.  They look like this

    image

     

     Note the brown head and no legs.  

    I use nematodes to treat them and have had good success with quite a large border.  Nematodes are the best way as they are specific to the vine weevils and don't kill beneficial creatures. 

    There are some pesticides which can be used in specific situations, but as they contain chemicals that harm beneficial insects like bees and ladybirds they're best avoided or used in carefully controlled situations. 

    This is the RHS advice re vine weevils https://www.rhs.org.uk/advice/profile?PID=234

    Hope that's helpful image

    “I am not lost, for I know where I am. But however, where I am may be lost.” Winnie the Pooh







  • Thank you so much everyone, that is all most helpful.  I know where to come if I have another problem. Thanks again.

  • LynLyn DevonPosts: 16,554

    You would be most welcome to join in any of the threads Jennie, don't wait just until you have a problem!

    i did notice your first ever post was never answered, that doesn't usually happen, there's always someone (usually always!) who can answer you.

    Gardening on the wild, windy west side of Dartmoor. 

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