Have you noticed tiny mounds of soil built up on your green? Are you smearing soil all over your green with your cylinder mower? Worm casts mostly appear in the autumn or winter but can crop up at any time of the year.
Worm casts are created by earthworms. These worms consume and digest organic matter in the soil. They then expel it from their gut onto the soil surface. This creates the coil of smooth soil which we call worm casts.
For many years gardeners and turf professionals have used chemicals to get rid of worms in their lawn however legislation has removed these products from the market and of course we don't wan't to be harming worms! Worms can be extremely useful in your green. They are a natural method of cultivating and improving soil. They 'eat' soil and thatch in the turf and help to break down other organic material on the surface of the grass. These materials are mixed and digested by the worm then excreted as a worm cast. This is the part we don't like as greenkeepers! Worm casts can be a nuisance in the bowls industry. These sports rely on a smooth surface to roll a ball on. A bowling green dotted with worm casts can become unplayable. Underneath the green, earthworm activity helps to create space for the movement of water, air and nutrients – the key elements needed for healthy grass plants.
What do do about worm casts
- Do you have the C20/C24 or Stirling mode? Use your Allett brush cartridge to sweep them up.
- Use your Allett Scarifier cartridge
- Mow regularly as well as undertaking regular cultivation practices.
- Collect your grass clippings
- Keep leaves off your green in the Autumn/Winter months.
- Aerate your green regularly-Worms are more active in wetter soils
- There are chemical ways to get rid of worms but we are NOT going to talk about that!
- Use a Switch
- Get the rotary out to pick up the worm casts
TOP TIP- Do you have a Stirling? Try replacing your front roller with the auxiliary wheel kit to stop your mower smearing the worm casts all over your lawn.