What Nematodes Should I Buy?

March 15, 2013 | All About Nematodes

So, you have decided to use beneficial nematodes in the treatment of your pest problems.  But now  you are faced with determining where to buy your nematodes, how many nematodes to buy, or if it even matters.  Considering the writers of this blog work for a nematode supplier, you may have an idea where this is going, but we hope the following serves as a truly informational and factual nematode buying guide.

Consider when buying nematodes

-Where are your nematodes actually coming from?

The first things to consider in selecting your nematode supplier is where (geographically) they are coming from, and who is selling them.  When buying a perishable and microscopic product, you certainly want to make sure you chose a reputable supplier.  Many suppliers are actually re-sellers of nematodes, meaning they don’t actually produce the product you are purchasing.  So what does that matter?  Nematodes are perishable little guys, especially before they create a nice cozy home for themselves in your soil.  Shipping stresses them, and can even kill many of them if they are not adequately packaged or if they end up in transit too long.  Buying from a re-seller could mean you are purchasing nematodes that have spent too much time in shipment or storage, resulting in many fewer living nematodes than you paid for.  Unfortunately, without a microscope most customers don’t even have the ability to check whether their product is living or dead.  BioLogic is a nematode producer with experience shipping nematodes all over the world. We are experts on selecting the type of shipment that will ensure your nematodes arrive in tact and alive, at a fair price.  And being the producer, the nematodes start out without any earlier stress from shipment.

-How many nematodes do I need?

The next thing to consider is the number of active units (aka infective juvenile nematodes) you need to effectively treat your garden or lawn.  As nematodes become more popular, there are an increasing number of nematode suppliers out there making all sorts of promises.  They employ creative marketing techniques and often times exaggerate application rates.  BioLogic recommends 13,000-35,000 nematodes per square foot.  This number varies a bit depending on the pest, so check out our website or contact us  for specific application rates for your pest.  Our recommendation is based on our research, and the research of reputable institutions like Cornell University.  In an effort to sell more nematodes, many companies exaggerate their application rates.  They will claim that lesser amounts of nematodes will treat a larger area.  Or, they will (in small print) tell you to reapply every 2 weeks- who has time for that?  When comparing prices remember to compare the number of active nematodes in each package as well.  You are not getting a great deal if the product you buy doesn’t actually have enough nematodes to take care of pests in the size garden you are treating.  BioLogic’s advice is if the company can’t give you the correct application rate, stay away.  Chances are they don’t really know much about nematodes, and they are just trying to make a buck on customers that don’t know better.  And if they don’t list the number of nematodes on the package… stay far far away.  If you try to spread too few nematodes over too large a space, you are not likely to have very good results and may be inclined go back to potentially harmful chemicals.

-Where to buy nematodes?

The last thing to consider in determining where to buy your nematodes, is what retail outlet you should actually chose.  Nematodes can be purchased online, in big box stores, or at garden centers.  Big box shops are now carrying nematodes, but if you can’t trust the college kid working there to direct you to the hardware section, do you really want to trust him to give you advice on something like beneficial nematodes?  Large hardware stores are good at selling nails and screws because they are not perishable, but nematodes require a bit more tender loving care.  We aren’t saying these stores are bad (in fact we quite like them!) just remember that you want to ensure you are buying a product that has been carefully stored at the right temperature.  If you want to go this route be sure to ask questions and tread cautiously.  BioLogic considers reputable garden centers to be the ideal place to buy nematodes.  Before selling our products through a garden center we walk the staff through the proper storage and application of our products.  When you buy our products from a garden center you can have comfort knowing the products were properly stored, and the staff educated. Or you can always buy directly from BioLogic, the producer, on our website.

We sincerely hope this guide helps you navigate the world of nematodes and chose a reputable supplier.  BioLogic wants people to have a good experience and realize success with nematodes, and we certainly hope this guide helps!  As always, if you have any questions feel free to explore our website or contact us.