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Thread: Diatomaceous Earth

  1. #9
    mobile's Avatar
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    Are you talking about fungus gnats? If so then mosquito dunks (BTi (Bacillus thuringiensis subspecies israelensis)) or Steinernema feltiae are a common treatment.

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    sarracenia lover dionae's Avatar
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    It seems that to coat the top of a plant's soil, there could be enough in an exposed place to create an air quality problem
    You can water the DE into the soil after spreading it on the top. Once its wet theres no dust. I've used it for years on my houseplants.

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    UnstuckinTime's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by scottychaos View Post
    I wouldnt..
    diatomaceous earth isnt really a "dust"..its actually fossil diatoms..its VERY sharp yet very small..imagine a ball of microscopic razor blades..yes it kills bugs because it cuts them up..but wouldnt it also cut plant stems and roots then too?


    I believe the point is that it gets into the softer membranes that are present at the joints of insects, and when the critter tries to move, these membranes get torn up. Because the plants are moving around, it wont harm them. Also, they have the epicuticular wax which would protect them from any "scratches."
    "The plants you grow, end up growing you."


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    I am in Cincinnati, OH.

    They appear to be fungus gnats. If I can get rid of them, I'll remove the capensis seedlings and try moving the vft to a colder location.

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    Sphagnum Guru Wire Man's Avatar
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    I feel you on the bedbug issue. Had them in October, it was awful! I could have played connect-the-dots on my body.

    I usually take care of fungus gnats by terrestrial bladderworts and sundews. I've had a drastic reduction in their numbers since I started growing the two side-by-side.

  6. #14
    mobile's Avatar
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    I currently have a fungus gnat infestation. I've never used mosquito dunks, but read about them elsewhere on this forum - http://www.terraforums.com/forums/sh...d.php?t=128712. I am currently using a combination of fly papers and Steinernema feltiae, and there are noticeably fewer adult flying around.

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    I'm with mobile on this. I've been using mosquito dunks since a particularly terrible fungus gnat infection this last spring. It works like a charm. I use dunks where I have tray watering and with the other plants I simply use a 1" mulch (rinsed pea gravel, silica sand, and turface all work fine). If you can't find it locally in hardware store or nursery, you can find them online quite easily. No need for potentially dangerous DE (Bti, the bacteria in mosquito dunks, is harmless to pets and humans). Good luck!
    Grow to learn, learn to grow.

  8. #16
    Hello, I must be going... Not a Number's Avatar
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    Well, it's supposed to be harmless since it is thought that the toxins are metabolized in mammals but this study found Bt toxins in the blood of pregnant women from eating GMO corn that produces the Bt toxins:

    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21338670
    Grand Hotel... always the same. People come, people go. Nothing ever happens.

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