Earwigs - Knowledgebase Question

Stoughton, Ma
Question by bacire10
June 2, 2010
Should I be concerned about the QTY of earwigs in my hanging planter? The planter fell to the ground and out came ~7 earwigs. To me, that is an overabundance in such a small pot. I am concerned that my flowers and veggies might suffer because of so many. What do you recommend?

Answer from NGA
June 2, 2010


Earwigs generally feed on organic debris and other insects. Unless the population is large and there's lots of competition for food, they won't usually feed on live plants. They do like to hide in moist, dark places. There are two ways to control the earwigs: Put about a half-inch of water in an empty cat food or tuna can and float a tablespoon of oil on top. Place the can beneath your plants. Earwigs will be attracted to the residue in the can, crawl in, get coated with oil and drown. Or, roll a few newspaper tubes, moisten them, and place them in the pots in the early evening. Earwigs are mostly active at night and look for a moist, dark place to hide during the day. They'll crawl into the tubes in the early morning. Collect and dispose of the newspaper tubes each morning and eventually you'll lower the earwig population.

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