Earwigs are a common phenomenon that every household owner is familiar with. What many do not know however is why at certain times we see more of them around as well as how to deal with an outbreak. In today’s blog, we will cover these topics.
Earwigs thrive in damp environments in and around decaying vegetation. They can also cause damage to your garden by eating and leaving small holes in foliage and flowers. The removal of decaying vegetation and leaves as well as old mulch can help in making an environment less hospitable for them.
Should the altering of their living space fail to provide results, there are some alternative methods that can be applied. You can try placing shallow cans (cat food or tuna) in your yard and filling them with ½” (1.25cm) of vegetable oil. The earwigs will be attracted to the can and they will drown. You can repeat this as necessary. Dish soap mixed with water can also be applied to plants in order to prevent them from being eaten. To stop them from entering your house, you can use boric acid, which is deadly to insects but low in toxicity to people, pets and other animals that could come into contact with it. Attracting natural predators such as birds or amphibians is also another way to control their population. You can also attract certain types of flies that are the earwigs’ natural enemies by having these plants present in your garden: anise, buckwheat, coreopsis, cosmos, dill, fennel, golden marguerite, painted daisies, and tansies.
Should the problem still persist, heavier insecticides or the help of a pest control professional may be needed.