This Morning: Alison O'Neill shares her strawberry jam recipe
When you subscribe we will use the information you provide to send you these newsletters. Sometimes they’ll include recommendations for other related newsletters or services we offer. Our Privacy Notice explains more about how we use your data, and your rights. You can unsubscribe at any time.
Nothing beats freshly picked strawberries in the summer, ideally smothered with cream and enjoyed outside when the sun pops out. But woodlice can ruin your plans for a fruit-filled summer, as these little pests can quickly much through your carefully grown strawberry patch. So, here are some full-proof methods to keep your patch woodlice free.
Strawberries can be hard to grow, they require patient gardening and can take up a lot of your time.
After all that effort you don’t want your precious crop to become food for irritating woodlice.
The best ways to stop woodlice eating strawberries
Woodlice won’t cause much damage to growing plants; like us, they wait until strawberries have ripened.
Just before your fruits begin to ripen you must start to protect your crop from a probable woodlice attack.
Clear away habitats for woodlice
Woodlice are drawn to dark, damp places, to keep them away from your veggie patch it is essential you cut away any dead leaves that might have gathered around your strawberry plants.
Remove anything near your strawberry plants that woodlice may be tempted to hide and shelter under.
As their name suggests these lice are fond of wood, so make sure you haven’t got any stray pieces of wood lying around your fruit plants.
Don’t use chemicals
There are chemicals to control woodlice that invade homes, sadly they won’t be much help in the garden.
Chemicals designed to control woodlice outbreaks indoors cannot be used on edible crops, so despite your frustration don’t be tempted to pour these onto your crops.
Raise your strawberries
If woodlice have repeatedly attacked your strawberry harvest why not try using a hanging basket to grow your strawberries next year.
Not only will this eliminate your woodlice problem but, this way of growing strawberries can be more manageable.
Strawberry plants can quickly grow out of control without careful pruning, containing your plants in a fixed area, such as in a hanging basket can solve this problem.
Using a hanging basket to grow your strawberries in is also a nifty way to save space in small gardens.
But once you have eliminated the problem of woodlice you may have to deal with another pest.
Birds are drawn to these tasty treats so make sure you cover your plants with a fruit cage or bird-proof netting.
You may also have to take steps to keep slugs and snails away, these pests find ripened strawberries irritatingly delicious.
Beer traps can work well and so can salt barriers, however, these will need to be refreshed if it rains as the salt will be washed away and the beer will become too diluted.
Crushed eggshells, gardening grit and broken oyster shells can provide a sharp barrier to deter these slimy creatures too.
It is worth bearing in mind that woodlice are first and foremost scavengers.
They will be attracted to plants that others pests, such as birds, have already picked at as it will be easier for them to eat damaged fruit.
So, you should focus on deterring other pests before you deal with your woodlice problem as the first is likely to attract the second.
Source: Read Full Article