About worms, lichen and moss control
Firstly, a sincere apology for encouraging gardeners to cultivate worms for healthy soil and gardens. I had not considered the implications of worm farming as a high risk activity. The new Health and Safety Reform Bill has shown me the error of my ways.
The good news is that entering a paddock full of steers or bulls to collect mushrooms or manure for gardens and compost heaps, is now classified as low risk.
Obviously the new classification is to do with the type of worms used for worm farming – tiger worms. The assumption was they were called tiger worms because of their stripes, but are obviously far more dangerous than that.
You only have to see how quickly they can clean up a rotting carcass to appreciate this.
There is only one ‘deadly’ tiger worm. All other worms living in the soil (over 4400 known and named) are simply referred to as earthworms.
And now for some real danger. Moss and liverwort on wet paths can result in broken bones, especially for seniors. Moss in lawns looks unsightly and interferes with grass growth. Liverwort in gardens and on containers can spread, hampering plant growth. On roofs, glasshouses, fences and paths it can be unsightly, damaging and dangerous. Lichen on trees causes damage to the bark over time.
An easy fix is Wally’s Moss & Liverwort Control. Mixed at either 50ml per litre of water for moss and liverwort or 25ml per litre for lichen, it must be jetted on with a pump sprayer to force it into the target area. Applied correctly it will not harm other plants or lawn, and is costeffective when compared to similar products. It takes about two weeks to see the moss and lichen turning colour and dying completely. Algae that forms in bird baths and the like can be easily cleaned up with just a couple of drops in the water. To activate the kill factors, blast the water with the hose to make it foam.
Before using in fish ponds, remove the fish as the product depletes the water of oxygen and will cause them to die.
After treating the pond, place an air stone on an air pump to get oxygen back into the water. Wait an hour or so, then put a ‘test’ fish into the pond to see if all is OK before returning the rest.
To keep the clean pond algae free, put a wad of straw into a plastic bag weighed down with a stone. Punch lots of little holes in the bag after sealing it and toss it in. If it’s a large pond, use more than one bag and for farm size ponds just throw in a bale or two of straw. Replace every 6 months.
Now to get my protective gear on so I can put food scraps into my worm farms.
Problems? Ring me at 0800 466 464 (Palmerston North 357 0606) Email firstname.lastname@example.org Website: gardenews.co.nz
Dicing with deadliness, an unprotected worm-farmer takes his life in his hands.