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Mar 30, 2018 11:59 AM CST
New York, ny
Thumb of 2018-03-30/plantobsessed/2eee42

These bugs keep coming out of my houseplants. Any idea what they are and if I need to take any action? (Like immediately change all the soil)
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Mar 30, 2018 12:45 PM CST
Name: Daisy I
Reno, Nv (Zone 6b)
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How big are they? Do they have a hard shell (not soft and squishy like a tomato horn worm)? Do you think they're centipedes?
Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and proclaiming...."WOW What a Ride!!" -Mark Frost

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Mar 30, 2018 1:08 PM CST
Name: Big Bill
Livonia Michigan (Zone 6a)
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Looks to be maybe some kind of grub or larvae.
What type of potting soil are they in?

Beetle larva perhaps. Real hard to say. Hopefully you'll get a more definitive answer.
Every day God gives me is just a true blessing!!!
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Mar 30, 2018 1:17 PM CST
Name: Sue
Ontario, Canada (Zone 4b)
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It appears to have two pairs of legs per body segment (as far as I can tell from the picture). That would make it a millipede. It may not be damaging the plants but maybe you are keeping them too wet. Is there a lot of organic matter in the mix?
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Mar 30, 2018 1:22 PM CST
Name: Big Bill
Livonia Michigan (Zone 6a)
GROW ORCHIDS!!!
Bee Lover Lover of wildlife (Raccoon badge) Orchids Region: Michigan Hostas Growing under artificial light
Echinacea Critters Allowed Cat Lover Butterflies Birds Region: United States of America
Great point Sooby, if it is a millipede/centipede it would have a pair of legs on each segment.
And insect larvae would have only three pair of legs total.no matter how many segments there are.
Every day God gives me is just a true blessing!!!
Last edited by BigBill Mar 30, 2018 1:23 PM Icon for preview
Avatar for plantobsessed
Mar 30, 2018 1:29 PM CST
New York, ny
I googled and it seems like a millipede. It's tiny. I know they feed on dead matter, but does that mean i should change the soil? It's in my parlor palm and pothos. those two were bought already planted and ready to decorate so I don't know what soil was used.
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Mar 30, 2018 1:31 PM CST
Name: Will Creed
NYC
Prof. plant consultant & educator
Keep the soil as dry as possible and they will probably very slowly die off. If you change the soil, you may kill the plant, not just the critters.

For the future, be careful where you purchase your plants and with any soil you use.
Will Creed
Horticultural Help, NYC
www.HorticulturalHelp.com
Contact me directly at wcreed@HorticulturalHelp.com
I now have a book available on indoor plant care
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Mar 30, 2018 1:32 PM CST
New York, ny
It had decorative moss over the top soil, I'm thinking if I throw the moss away maybe that will help?
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Mar 30, 2018 1:34 PM CST
Name: Greg Chrislip
Memphis, TN (Zone 7b)
Bookworm Cactus and Succulents Cat Lover Sempervivums
I used to rear African Giant Millipedes they grew to around 10 inches. Couldn't miss them. Rolling on the floor laughing
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Mar 30, 2018 1:34 PM CST
Name: Will Creed
NYC
Prof. plant consultant & educator
If the plants are small enough, you can set the pots up to their rims in a sink filled with plain water and leave them for a couple of hours. The flood will probably drive the critters out of the soil in search of oxygen.
Will Creed
Horticultural Help, NYC
www.HorticulturalHelp.com
Contact me directly at wcreed@HorticulturalHelp.com
I now have a book available on indoor plant care
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Mar 30, 2018 1:35 PM CST
Name: Will Creed
NYC
Prof. plant consultant & educator
They may have been introduced with the moss, but with the soil is more likely. Don't use that soil again.
Will Creed
Horticultural Help, NYC
www.HorticulturalHelp.com
Contact me directly at wcreed@HorticulturalHelp.com
I now have a book available on indoor plant care
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Mar 30, 2018 1:42 PM CST
Name: Greg Chrislip
Memphis, TN (Zone 7b)
Bookworm Cactus and Succulents Cat Lover Sempervivums
I believe the moss is the likely culprit.

Thumb of 2018-03-30/GregC/771925
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Avatar for plantobsessed
Mar 30, 2018 2:16 PM CST
New York, ny
@gregc eek!!

@willc thank you for all your advice!!
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Mar 30, 2018 2:50 PM CST
Name: Greg Chrislip
Memphis, TN (Zone 7b)
Bookworm Cactus and Succulents Cat Lover Sempervivums
Yes, I am truly a crazy entomologist. Rolling on the floor laughing
Entomologist
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Apr 1, 2018 9:15 AM CST
(Zone 5b)
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Glad it`s not one of these https://www.google.com/search?...
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Apr 2, 2018 2:25 PM CST
Name: stone
near Macon Georgia (USA) (Zone 8a)
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GregC said:I used to rear African Giant Millipedes, they grew to around 10 inches.
Thumb of 2018-03-30/GregC/771925


Used to?
And not now?
They look awful cool...

Can you eat them?
looks like survival preps...
Could you maybe feed them to the goldfish & koi?
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Apr 2, 2018 2:30 PM CST
Name: Greg Chrislip
Memphis, TN (Zone 7b)
Bookworm Cactus and Succulents Cat Lover Sempervivums
I have federal permits to rear them but the cost went from $10/each to $125.00/each when USDA stopped imports. Now only permit holders can have them if they can find stock.
Entomologist
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Apr 2, 2018 3:48 PM CST
Name: stone
near Macon Georgia (USA) (Zone 8a)
Garden Sages Million Pollinator Garden Challenge Plant Identifier
Each individual millipede?
or each variety?

I guess that you wouldn't eat them...

Do those African millipedes have a hardy enough constitution to escape into the wild and overpopulate the place?
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Apr 2, 2018 4:10 PM CST
Name: Sally
central Maryland (Zone 7b)
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Way cool, for Greg to rear them. Way horrifying to think they could escape and survive...OMG
If you loved me half as much as I love you, you wouldn't worry me half as much as you do...
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Apr 2, 2018 4:33 PM CST
Name: Greg Chrislip
Memphis, TN (Zone 7b)
Bookworm Cactus and Succulents Cat Lover Sempervivums
Only survive in extreme warm climate. $125 per giant millipede.
Entomologist

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