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Grubs around strawberry roots


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  • Grubs around strawberry roots

    With the new lottie I've inherited 2 table-style raised beds crammed with strawberries. After a drastic haircut, removal of tons of runners and dead leaves, they look quite presentable and the remaining plants seem healthy. I have no idea how old they are. Also, there were fat white grubs, curled up in a C shape, approx 5mm x 10mm in size when straightened out, around the roots of pretty much every plant I pulled up.

    Any ideas what they are and how much of a problem they might be?

    Should I scrap all the plants and start again? And/or should I scrap all the soil in these 2 beds?

  • #2
    Vine weevil grubs. Big problem if left untreated. They are less of an issue to plants in open ground. You can rescue the plants if you want by pulling up, rinsing all the soil off the roots and either plant somewhere new or replace the soil in the table beds. If you go with putting them in pots or the tables you can treat 1-2 times a year with nematodes to control the little beggars. You can chuck the old soil where ever the birds will soon pick through it. Vine weevils tend to have a thing for strawbs, heuchara and primulas.


    • #3
      B**ger. I'd transplanted a dozen under the apple trees before I spotted the grubs. Should I dig those up and then spread the nematodes around the trees? There are some mystery bulbs under the trees as well, also a kale and a rosemary bush. 20cm away from them are my overwintering broad beans (separate bed, not raised, but separation is only a 20cm wide dirt path).
      Last edited by cabbagepatchkid; 15-01-2018, 09:15 PM.


      • #4
        Don't panic

        The grubs do more damage than the actual beetle, but are unlikely to damage the other plants mentioned. Nematodes need warmer weather to work. The grubs eat all the plant roots, so you see healthy plants one day and sulky the next and wonder why when it is wet, only to touch it and the plants head just comes off

        Heucharas, primulas and strawbs are relatively small plants and in pots the grubs tend to be more numerous. You may lose your strawb plants that is about it.

        Lets see possible pests for your other plants

        Apple trees - scale bugs, codling moth, birds, squirrels, deer, rabbits....
        mystery bulbs - mice....
        kale - pigeons, caterpillars, whitefly, deer, rabbits.....
        rosemary bush- rosemary beetle, spittlebugs.....
        overwintering broad beans - bean weevil, caterpillars, deer.....

        What's a little bit of vine weevil when you look at the bigger picture! Yep, gardener = Complete nutter. How anyone manages to grow anything is a miracle.


        • #5
          My anxiety is pleased to meet you! There is stuff on your list I never knew existed, can I have my blissful ignorance back please?

          Okie dokie, I'll pull the strawberries under the trees, get rid of everything in the table beds, nematode around apple trees when it warms up, and plant herbs or something under them instead.

          Thank you for the advice, much appreciated


          • #6
            Sorry. That was a bit naughty of me.
            It wasn't that long ago I was the one panicking over the slightest mention of a disease in relation to fruit trees. If your trees are in pots then nemotodes would be good just to cover ya bum, but if in the ground I wouldn't bother. If the strawbs have only recently been replanted then pull them and if you want to try and save just rinse the roots. I have had pots with odd grubs in and they really aren't an issue on the whole.

            Sorry again, I will go and sit on the naughty step.


            • #7
              I was only joking, don't worry about it . There is plenty I have no idea about when it comes to gardening!

              Seriously, thank you for your help. The trees are in the ground, so less to worry about then!


              • #8
                Vine weevil is my biggest pest in the greenhouse up to a couple of years ago. Nowadays I use compost with a bug killer in it and leave all new plants a day or two in a bucket of water and that seams to have sorted the problem [I hope].


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