Update: This post is from May when I found wireworms eating my tomato plants. If I had prepared some traps in March these could have been saved. Plan now, save your plants too. Don’t let the wireworms win.
Finally some nice weather has me outside to check on my newly transplanted early tomatoes and…WHAT THE?!
The wilty and pale sad little transplants looked perfectly healthy 2 days ago.
I pulled one up to replace it with a backup and WHAT THE %$^&%$%^&*?! There’s wireworms eating them from the inside out.
I think this one is actually drooling….
I dug around in the soil only to find a whole bunch of these ugly critters. I had planted lettuce transplants early in the season in the same raised bed which all mysteriously disappeared days after planting. I blamed the slugs. I killed LOTS of baby slugs to terrify the other hidden slugs. But could it have been these nasty little wireworms that ate my lettuce?
If you recently transformed a grassy part of your yard to a garden bed (check out Turning Lawn into a Vegetable Garden with Raised Beds) then you may have an abundance of wireworms just waiting for tender seedlings. The best way to remove them is by setting up a wireworm trap.
Cut a potato in half and skewer it with a long stick. Bury the potato in the soil (or make a few of these for large beds/lots of wireworms), ensuring that the top of the stick stays above the soil so you can find them. In a week or so, carefully dig (not pull) up the trap and remove the wireworms. Replace and keep removing the worms until you don’t find them anymore. You are now ready to plant!