I have what are referred to as "Prairie Worms" in my yard. - Knowledgebase Question

Question by aduzan
October 5, 2009
While, as I've been told, these worms are great for cultivating my lawn; however, they must come to the surface for air when conditions are wet. Some of the worms I've seen reach lengths over a foot long. My dad says to do nothing as they are good; my lawn man agrees. My problem: when they come to the surface they leave small ant-type hills and they are also multiplying like rabbits.

Answer from NGA
October 5, 2009


Prairie worms, dew worms and nightcrawlers are all local names for the same worm. They are benficial in that they aerate the soil but they can be annoying when they surface for air in soggy soils and when they leave lumps or mounds in your lawn. There are no chemicals available to homeowners to control these worms so you may want to try aerating your lawn to help loosen the soil and help it drain quickly. While aerating won't kill off the worms it will make air more accessible to them so they won't be so apt to surface. A core aerator will remove one inch by three inch plugs from the lawn. Leave the plugs on the lawn and they will dissolve in rain or water from the sprinklers. After aerating spread a thin layer of sand or compost over the area and water it in well. The sand or compost plus the soil from the plugs will work their way down into the holes left by the plugs and provide spaces for water to drain. Best wishes with your lawn!

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