Saturday, May 31, 2008
The blue-eyed grass started blooming this week. I took pictures a few days ago and all three of the plants appeared to be healthy. I was very concerned today when I noticed that one of the plants was nearly dead in the center. On closer inspection I noticed that the plant was full of pillbugs or roly-pollies . The grass was falling over and none of the pieces were firmly in the ground.
I gathered them up and planted them in other containers, hoping to salvage them. I checked other things in the gardens and noticed the spiderwort was looking distressed as well. I pulled back the mulch and noticed the pillbugs were all at the base of that plant too.
We have had a very wet spring, so that may be a contributing factor to the plague of pillbugs. I've always had them but have never had this many and I've never noticed them eating my plants before.
I've been having difficulty keeping any of my new plants alive because as soon as I plant them they are eaten. I don't know if the pillbugs are eating all of the young plants, but I know for certain they are responsible for the damage to the blue-eyed grass.
I researched on line trying to find a natural way to kill them. One suggestion was to wet newspaper, roll it up and lay it beside the plant they're eating. They will crawl inside because they like damp places and in the morning the papers can be collected and thrown away. I did this tonight and placed about 10-12 rolls of paper around the flowerbeds. I hope it works, but I can't imagine that it will eliminate them as quickly or as effectively as might be necessary. Has anyone else had this problem? What is a good, natural method for reducing the number of pillbugs?