We have a problem with clothes moths. They don't just eat wool, they eat holes in cotton clothing too! The only way I have seen to get rid of them is to hire a chemical company to 'bomb' the place which I do NOT want to do. How can we seriously get these guys to leave so we don't lose all our clothing?
Location: Arkansas Ozarks zone 7 alluvial,black,deep loam/clay with few rocks, wonderful creek bottom!
posted 6 years ago
Jody Tracy wrote:We have a problem with clothes moths. They don't just eat wool, they eat holes in cotton clothing too! The only way I have seen to get rid of them is to hire a chemical company to 'bomb' the place which I do NOT want to do. How can we seriously get these guys to leave so we don't lose all our clothing?
Hi, Jody, Have you seen and Identified the moths and larva or just noticed the holes? It seems unusual for clothes moth larva to eat cotton also. The best preventative I have learned (from others) for moths in wool is to air it in the sunlight frequently and always put it away for storage freshly laundered. They seem to like dark storage places for chomping holes in our woolens. We never found cedar any help...more recently I used a recipe for 'moth repellent' that had dried thyme, orange peel, cloves...it smelled great... but I think clean, sun aired clothing is the best deterent. I do that for my wool yarns too... making sure I bring them out of storage to the light frequently.
"We're all just walking each other home." -Ram Dass
"Be a lamp, or a lifeboat, or a ladder."-Rumi
Cedar can be effective, but only if there's plenty of it in a pretty air-tight space. I agree that keeping woolens clean and airing them frequently makes a huge difference. Moth eggs and larvae can also be killed be heat. Every summer I put my yarn and spinning fibers in my car for several days when it's hot and sunny. The temperature in a closed car on a hot summer day is high enough to kill them. Washing is also effective, but I wouldn't be practical to wash all my yarn and unspun fibers.
I'm gonna blow the dust off this old thread and see what other folks have to say about moths eating wool. A long time ago in a former life, I conformed to "business standards" for jobs and had to look (and act) a certain way. I was liberated from those jobs by getting fired or quitting (usually I was asked to leave) and haven't worn a suit and tie for a paycheck in almost twenty years. I just moved, and handled the suits for the first time since a funeral five or six years ago, and I noticed moths have had their way with them. There's a lot of small holes along the bottom below the pockets on the jackets, and I didn't bother to look at the pants.
So fellow Permies, what does one do with holey (holie, holy?) suits? I don't think goodwill will take them, but I haven't asked them.
"Study books and observe nature; if they do not agree, throw away the books." ~ William A. Albrecht
If something of mine gets too chewed to wear or pass on, it goes into a batch of biochar. That is fast becoming my default method of converting anything organic that is too slow or unwieldy to compost.