sarcoids - Knowledgebase Question

Jacksonville, Fl
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Question by kaygfox
January 4, 2011
i live in florida and my fall garden had nematodes in it which affected the production of my harvest.

one suggestion we received to kill them BEFORE replanting was to soak the soil in a 10% bleach solution , cover it and let it sit for 30 days. then add mushroom & chicken compose before replanting.

will this work?

if not what should i do before replanting?


Answer from NGA
January 4, 2011
I don't think bleach will help. Heat and ultraviolet light kill nematodes so the University of Florida recommends soil solarization. Here's how: The soil should be worked with a hoe or rototiller to break up clods. Remove all sticks, roots, and clumps. The soil should be moist, but not wet. Cover the soil with a clear plastic tarp and bury the edges of the plastic (Figure 16). Leave the plastic on the soil for at least 4 to 6 weeks. Do not remove the plastic until you are ready to plant. Sunlight goes through the clear plastic and heats the soil underneath. The plastic then holds in the heat so it penetrates the soil. Long-term exposure to high temperature kills nematodes, as well as many weeds, fungi, and insect pests. The disinfested zone is usually 6 to 8 inches deep. Because it depends on sunlight and heat, solarization works best during the summer months. This fits well into the Florida growing season where vegetables are grown in the cooler seasons. Organic amendments can be added to soil as compost, manure, green manure, or other materials. Organic matter can help prevent nematode damage in several ways. The organic matter increases the ability of the soil to hold water and nutrients, and improve soil structure. This makes a better environment for most plants and can help the plants survive in spite of the nematodes. Organic amendments can also increase natural enemies of nematodes that suppress the nematode populations. Some organic amendments can release chemicals or gasses that are toxic to the nematodes. Hope this information helps!

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