Tiny Bugs from Potting Soil

Why are they always there no matter what I buy and how do I get rid of them? MJ
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On 12/4/2013 12:37 PM, mj wrote:

It takes time and money to pasteurize potting mix, so many producers don't do it anymore. You can pasteurize it yourself if you have a heatproof disposable pan and a hot plate, bbq grill, or other heat source that can be used outdoors. You don't want to do this indoors because it gets quite smelly.
Just dump the potting mix into the pan. You can get better control of the soil temperature if you cover the pan with some aluminum foil. You want to heat the soil to a minimum of 140 degrees F. to a maximum of 180 degrees F. Poke a thermometer through the aluminum foil into the soil and monitor the temperature. After 30 minutes at the 140 - 180 F. range, take it off the heat and let it cool. It is now pasteurized. Bugs and eggs will be dead. This generally takes care of seeds (weeds) as well.
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Moe DeLoughan wrote:

Don't you mean sterilize? Sterilized potting soil is readily available and only a few pennies a pot more than unsterilized. However still no guarantee a plant won't attract insects, so you'd need to treat the plant... often misting with a mild soap solution will delouse a potted plant.
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On 12/4/2013 2:30 PM, Brooklyn1 wrote:

No, I don't. Sterilized soil is dead. It's been heated to the point where all the soil microorganisms have been killed off. The idea here is just to heat it enough to kill off the less-hardy stuff, like bugs and eggs.
Sterilized potting soil is readily

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If you are going to be germinating seeds in it, you will want it sterilized it to avoid damping-off.
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pasteurization
verb [ trans. ] [often as adj. ] ( pasteurized) subject (milk, wine, or other products) to a process of partial sterilization, esp. one involving
heat treatment
or irradiation, thus making the product safe for consumption and improving its keeping quality :
-----
The product isn't sterilized, but the microbes that affect the product's use are killed, not necessarily all the microbes are killed.
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I usually do it in an toaster oven, using a metal bowl at 181 F for 30 min. to make sure that I have good penetration of the heat. 181 F for 20 min. will sterilize the soil.
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mj wrote:

because life is tenacious.
little bugs, live on.
it is very unlikely that they actually cause any harm.
songbird
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On Wednesday, December 4, 2013 3:12:03 PM UTC-5, songbird wrote:

sometimes there are so many of them I can't wash them off the lettuce leaves
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mj wrote:

Hmm protein!
D
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mj wrote: ...

you have little bugs and no little bug predators. learn about what kind of bugs they are and what preys upon them.
songbird
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mj wrote:

If you don't know what they are nor if they are harmful why do you want to kill them?
D
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On 04/12/2013 18:37, mj wrote:

They are probably sciarid fly. Google for more info. Some info here: http://apps.rhs.org.uk/advicesearch/Profile.aspx?pid 4
--

Jeff

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