How to Get Rid of Webworms (Natural & Organic Methods) - Organic Daily Post

How to Get Rid of Webworms (Natural & Organic Methods)

By Sabrina Wilson / July 27, 2022

webworms are a type of caterpillar that can cause extensive damage to trees and shrubs. The webworms spin webs around the leaves of the plant, which can cause the leaves to turn brown and die. The caterpillars also eat the leaves of the plant, which can further damage the plant. In severe cases, the webworms can completely defoliate a tree or shrub, which can weaken or kill the plant.

Organic methods for getting rid of webworms are preferable for several reasons. First, they are less likely to harm people and pets than chemical methods. Second, organic methods are more likely to be effective in the long run, since webworms will eventually develop resistance to chemicals. Third, organic methods are less likely to harm the environment than chemical methods. Finally, organic methods are often less expensive than chemical methods.

Beneficial Nematodes

Beneficial nematodes are tiny, beneficial insects that occur naturally in most soils. You can purchase them online or at some garden supply stores. Apply them to your garden according to the package directions. Be sure to water the area well before and after applying the nematodes. The watering will help them move through the soil to the webworms.

Neem Oil

To use neem oil to get rid of webworms, mix 2 tablespoons of neem oil with 1 cup of water and 1 teaspoon of dish soap. Pour this mixture into a spray bottle and shake well. Spray the mixture on the affected areas of your plant, such as the stems and leaves. Be sure to coat the webworms thoroughly. The neem oil will kill the webworms within 24 hours.

Insecticidal Soap

Insecticidal soap is made by combining soap and water with certain plant-based oils, such as coconut oil. The soap breaks down the oils’ surface tension, which in turn breaks down the waxy coating that covers an insect’s body. This can cause the insect to dehydrate and die. Insecticidal soap is most effective when used on young, soft-bodied insects, such as immature caterpillars, aphids, thrips, whiteflies, and mealybugs. It generally does not work well on hard-bodied adults, such as beetles and moths.

Insecticidal soap is an effective method to get rid of webworms. The soap will kill the webworms on contact and is safe to use around children and pets. To use, mix 2 tablespoons of insecticidal soap with 1 gallon of water. Apply the mixture to the affected area with a pump sprayer. Be sure to wet the webworms completely. The soap will kill the webworms within 24 hours. Reapply as needed to keep the webworms under control.

Horticultural Oil

Insecticidal soap is made of a fatty alcohol in soap form. The soap's alcohols work to dissolve the waxes that coat an insect's exoskeleton, thereby causing the insect to dehydrate and die. Insecticidal soap is effective against a wide range of soft-bodied insects, including aphids, mealybugs, whiteflies, thrips, and young scale insects.

To use horticultural oil to get rid of webworms, mix 2.5 tablespoons of horticultural oil with 1 gallon of water. Place this mixture into a hand-held or backpack garden sprayer. Spray the oil mixture over the entire area of your yard where you see webworms. Be sure to spray the undersides of the leaves where webworms are often found. Apply the horticultural oil mixture every 7 to 10 days until webworms are no longer present.

FAQ

1. What are webworms?
Webworms are small, destructive caterpillars that are related to moths. They get their name from the silken webbing that they spin around the leaves of plants, which they then use to feed on. Webworms can wreak havoc on gardens and crops, and can be difficult to control once they get established.

2. What do webworms look like?
Webworms are small, slender caterpillars that are typically brown or black in color. They have long, hair-like antennae, and they are covered in tiny hairs. When they are feeding, webworms can completely strip a plant of its leaves, leaving behind just a skeleton.

3. What plants do webworms attack?
Webworms will attack just about any type of plant, but they are especially fond of fruit trees, nut trees, and vegetables. In the fall, webworms will also attack ornamental plants.

4. When do webworms attack plants?
Webworms are most active in the fall, when they will spin their webs around the leaves of plants. However, in some areas webworms can be active year-round.

5. How do webworms damage plants?
Webworms damage plants by feeding on the leaves. This can cause the plant to become severely stunted or even killed. Webworms can also spread disease to plants as they feed.

6. How do webworms spread?
Webworms can spread quickly through an area, as they are able to produce large numbers of offspring. They are often spread by birds, which can transport them to new areas in their droppings.

7. How can I control webworms?
Webworms can be difficult to control once they get established. Hand-picking and destroying the caterpillars is one method of control. Chemical controls are also available, but should be used with caution as they can also kill beneficial insects.

8. What are the symptoms of a plant infested with webworms?
The most obvious sign of a plant infested with webworms is the silken webbing that they spin around the leaves. The plant may also have skeletonized leaves, and may be covered in small, brown caterpillars.

9. What plants are most vulnerable to webworm attack?
Fruit trees, nut trees, and vegetables are most vulnerable to webworm attack. In the fall, webworms will also attack ornamental plants.

10. How can I prevent webworms from infesting my plants?
There is no sure way to prevent webworms from infesting your plants, but keeping your garden clean and free of debris can help. promptly removing any infested plants can also help to reduce the population of webworms.


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About the author

Sabrina Wilson

Sabrina Wilson is an author and homemaker who is passionate about a holistic approach to health. When she is not writing she can be found tooling around in her garden with the help of her appropriately named dog Digby, bicycling in the park, and occasionally rock climbing…badly. Sabrina is a staff writer for the Organic Daily Post.

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