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Old June 4, 2017   #1
Rockandrollin
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Default What's killing my melons?

What's this worm or caterpillar that's killing my melons and how do I kill it?
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Old June 4, 2017   #2
Rockandrollin
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At this point, I am guessing that they are wireworms. What can I do to control them? Currently my melons are planted on raised rows with plastic mulch
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Old June 4, 2017   #3
henry
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Wireworm for sure, do not know what you can do to control them in melons.
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Old June 4, 2017   #4
Dutch
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I had some vine borer caterpillars in my watermelon patch last year. I used BTk on them and it worked great. More on BTk here; http://tomatoville.com/showthread.php?t=43588
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Old June 4, 2017   #5
RayR
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dutch View Post
I had some vine borer caterpillars in my watermelon patch last year. I used BTk on them and it worked great. More on BTk here; http://tomatoville.com/showthread.php?t=43588
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Wireworms are Click Beetle larva, no kind of BT works on them.
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Old June 7, 2017   #6
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chickens love wireworms. cultivation, DE maybe ( the granular not the powder) and perhaps nematodes in the Fall after the garden is done producing and you aren't disturbing the soil.
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Old June 7, 2017   #7
shule1
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I'd personally give them basalt rockdust, potassium sulfate, and sea minerals. The first two are just to strengthen the plants (a lot) so it'll be harder for insects to damage the plants, and the third is because I get the feeling insects don't like salt (spider mites don't like sea minerals, anyway, but then they're not insects). Unless you give it a lot of sea minerals, the melons should be fine (and even enjoy them).

I don't know how well this will work against these particular pests, but it should strengthen the plants, at least.

Last edited by shule1; June 7, 2017 at 09:24 PM.
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Old June 7, 2017   #8
Rockandrollin
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Thank you everyone for your input!

Last year I had a lot of plants die and I didn't realize why. This year, the majority or one muskmelon survived another muskmelon pretty much wiped out, Ali Baba watermelon it wiped out, orange glo and sangria only had a few survivors. Some dieing plants had as many as 3 wireworms.

I bought some Ortho home defence granular and mixed it into the soil the best that I could (raised rows with plastic mulch).

The next day I replanted. Supposedly, the granular would kill in 24 hrs. While I was replanting, I dug up one live wireworm.

I like the suggestion about good nematodes, but I don't know if they would survive my winter fertilizing. From the end of the season until the end of January, I throw fresh horse manure onto the garden and rototill it in every now and then.

Time will tell......
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