How to Release Your Living Soil Bio-Diversity Pack - MI Beneficials

How to Release Your Living Soil Bio-Diversity Pack

How-To: Release Your Living Soil Bio-Diversity Pack

Updated 10/17/2022

In order to get the most out of your Bio-Diversity Pack it is important to understand what steps to take prior to introducing them as well as how they work, how to release, where to release and how much to release. Please read through this guide prior to introducing your beneficial insects for best results.


Steps Prior to Introduction

A. Look at your watering practices. It is very common to over water. It is known that over watering leads to root issues as well as pest problems. If you are in a living soil setup, it is common to water only 5-10% of total soil volume (If growing in 10 gallon pot, each watering is only .5 to 1 gallon). Your frequency of watering depends on the environmental conditions of your grow area like temperature and relative humidity as well as the overall VPD. To further complicate things, each plant is slightly different in their water uptake so you need to constantly assess and re-assess. Build A Soil made a very good guide to help growers dial this in here.


B. Stop using IPM root drench products. We recommend you stop using any products in your root drenches that are aimed at eliminating any insects in the soil. These products can kill the beneficial insects and organisms in your soil. Please use discretion and do your research prior to any root drench applications.


What Species are Contained

Dalotia coriaria (Rove Beetle), Hypoaspis miles (Stratiolaelaps scimitus), Oribatid mite, Oligochaeta annelida (pot worms), Springtails.

Adult Rove Beetle (Dalotia Coriaria)

How They Work

Our Bio-Diversity insect packs are more effective when introduced prior to any infestation or problem. When applied in an active pest infestation, they tend to take several weeks to establish a population big enough to make a dent. Once rove beetles, and Stratiolaelaps scimitus (Hypoapsis miles) enter their new homes, they immediately start eating the larvae of fungus gnats, soil stages of thrips, root aphids and several other undesirable root born pests. While the rove beetle takes a few weeks to reproduce and establish, the predatory Stratiolaelaps scimitus (Hypoapsis miles) tend to start hunting right away due to their shorter reproductive cycle and because there are enormous populations in each pack.

Hypoapsis miles can come in a range of colors from reddish to brown

While the predators are establishing dominance in the soil food web, the Oribatid mites and pot worms provide a population boom for enhanced competition, quicker nutrient cycling and assisting in keeping a balance of beneficial bacteria and fungi.


How to Release

For best results, clear a little hole through any mulch in the release spot. Our Bio-Diversity soil insect packs come packaged in a worm casting/coco coir blend along with decomposing pieces of beneficial insect food. We package them this way so they are able to sustain during shipping and also because the pieces of food act as a reproduction base for the beneficial insects in their new habitat.


When distributing in different spots from the same insect container, use a glove to break up pieces of the beneficial food into even size chunks and place in each cleared area. It is normal for it to smell bad. After placing chunks of food, distribute even amounts of the bio-diversity insect soil into each container, covering up the piece of food and then re-establishing mulch.


Where to Release

Our Bio-Diversity soil insect packs should be released in the center of each container or centralized locations in a green house environment. If there is an existing pest condition, it is best to locate the areas with highest activity and release beneficial insects in that spot. The beneficial insects will start establishing wherever you place them, but over time they will grow in population and expand over your entire grow space.


How Much to Release

As a preventative measure it is suggested to apply a small container, 12oz per 5 square feet, a large for 10 square feet and an extra large for 20 square feet.


If releasing into a worm bin, a small container should be acceptable for preventative.

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