Plant Clinic

Keeping millipedes out of the house

 

More information

Hunsberger


dade@ifas.ufl.edu

Q. I have this strange infestation of worms with legs I’ve had in my house this year. They kind of look like millipedes.

A.M.R., Morningside

What you found are indeed a species of millipedes, locally known as the yellow-banded millipede.

Millipedes live outdoors and are considered beneficial since they feed on decomposing organic matter. Indoors, they can be a nuisance but they don’t do any damage, won’t breed and will die within a day since it’s too dry inside.

To keep millipedes (and other creatures) out of your house, make sure that your weather-stripping around the doors is in good shape. Check at night with a flashlight, one person on each side of the closed door and look for light leaks. Weather-stripping sliding glass doors are more of a challenge, but try the best you can.

This species can crawl through soffit vents, so make sure the screens are in good shape. Seal all cracks and crevices in the walls. They appear to be attracted to porch lights, so turn off lights when not in use.

To discourage millipedes from living close to the house, make sure that mulch is no more than 3-4 inches deep and is at least 2-3 feet away from the foundation of the house. Cap off sprinkler heads that spray water near the foundation of the house since millipedes prefer high-moisture places.

Pesticides are usually unnecessary since it won’t solve this problem and it’s fairly easy to keep millipedes and insects out of the house.

Adrian Hunsberger is an entomologist/horticulturist with the UF/IFAS Miami-Dade Extension office. Write to Plant Clinic, 18710 SW 288th St., Homestead, FL 33030; e-mail aghu@ifas.ufl.edu.

Read more Plant Clinic stories from the Miami Herald

Miami Herald

Join the
Discussion

The Miami Herald is pleased to provide this opportunity to share information, experiences and observations about what's in the news. Some of the comments may be reprinted elsewhere on the site or in the newspaper. We encourage lively, open debate on the issues of the day, and ask that you refrain from profanity, hate speech, personal comments and remarks that are off point. Thank you for taking the time to offer your thoughts.

The Miami Herald uses Facebook's commenting system. You need to log in with a Facebook account in order to comment. If you have questions about commenting with your Facebook account, click here.

Have a news tip? You can send it anonymously. Click here to send us your tip - or - consider joining the Public Insight Network and become a source for The Miami Herald and el Nuevo Herald.

Hide Comments

This affects comments on all stories.

Cancel OK

  • Marketplace

Today's Circulars

  • Quick Job Search

Enter Keyword(s) Enter City Select a State Select a Category