What are potato worms? Prevention and treatment of eel worms

Any experienced gardener will tell you that he loves a challenge. That’s probably because most gardeners face a number of problems between the time they plant their seeds and the time they plough them again in the fall. One of the most annoying and difficult problems gardeners face is a small eel-like worm that lives in the ground and can be a serious problem in your garden. Parasitic nematodes, also known as eel worms, cannot be seen with the naked eye, but when they invade your plants, especially potatoes, they can cause significant damage.

A nematode by any other name is as unpleasant as a garden problem. Eelworm control can help protect your potato crop. Learn about eelgrass worms on potatoes and what you can do to stop them in this informative article.

What are potato worms?

Eelgrass worms in potatoes are not a rare problem. When these plant pests live in the soil, they quickly seek out their preferred hosts, such as aspotons and tomatoes. Once located, these small animals go to work eating the root hairs and eventually digging into the larger roots or tubers of their potatoes.

Eelworms can cause so much root damage as they feed that their plants develop persistent wilting, with yellow, soft leaves that quickly turn brown or black when the plant dies. If you are lucky enough to have a successful harvest, eelworms on potatoes will appear as damaged areas of flesh with multiple visible holes.

Eelgrass Worm Treatment

Orchards in which potatoes or tomatoes have been planted year after year in the same section of soil are particularly susceptible to infection by this type of nematode. Eelworm control begins with crop rotation in cycles of at least six years. Unfortunately, if your potatoes are already under attack, there is little you can do to stop it.

In some areas, solarization can make the soil temperature high enough to kill sea worms and their eggs. If you have had problems in the past, try using resistant potatoes such as the following early varieties:

  • Accord
  • Kestrel
  • Lady Christi
  • Maxine
  • Pentland Javelin
  • Rocket

Maize varieties are also known for their resistance to eelworm attacks. These include

  • Face
  • Lady Balfour
  • Husbands Piper
  • Picasso
  • Health
  • Value

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