The vast majority of the insect life in your lawn is harmless or beneficial. However, there are a few that will cause damage to your lawn.
These pests are primarily sucking insects, and their damage usually shows up as brown spots in your lawn. They eat the juice from the leaves of plants, and replace it with their saliva to kill the plant.
Chinch Bugs are small insects that live within the grass thatch layer. They can be found almost anywhere in a lawn, but they typically prefer hot and dry areas.
They feed by inserting their razor-sharp beaks into a blade of grass and sucking out its natural fluids, then releasing poison that causes the grass to die.
Once the damage is done, chinch bugs leave behind a toxic residue on the grass that can be difficult for other pests to kill. This makes chinch bug infestations particularly tough to treat.
Managing chinch bugs starts with a good lawn pest control regimen that includes removing thatch. Thatch offers chinch bugs a safe place and can chemically bind with many pesticides, making them less effective.
Armyworms are one of the most destructive lawn pests in North America. They can eat a whole lawn in a matter of days, destroying grass and causing ragged-looking blades.
These insects can be difficult to control, but there are a few things you can do to keep them from doing damage to your property. First, make sure your lawn is mowed properly and you are not overwatering it.
Second, use beneficial insects like ladybugs, lacewings and minute pirate bugs to attack armyworm eggs and larvae as they hatch. These predators can help you keep army worms under control and save your lawn from a lot of damage.
If you’re dealing with a serious armyworm infestation, consider using a chemical treatment to control the population and minimize further damage. These can include insecticides that contain active ingredients such as spinosad, bifenthrin, and cyfluthrin. Depending on the size of your lawn and the severity of the infestation, you may need to apply several applications throughout the year to prevent armyworms from returning.
Sod Webworms can be found throughout the United States and are common in cool-season lawns. They feed on a variety of grasses, including bluegrass, ‘Tifdwarf’ hybrid bermudagrass, timothy, some clovers, and corn.
Mowing the right height, proper irrigation, and fertilization are keys to maintaining a healthy lawn that can withstand sod webworm infestation. These measures should also help in preventing the spread of other pests and diseases that can occur when turf becomes stressed.
Biological controls such as Bacillus thuringiensis have been used in some areas to control sod webworms and appear to work fairly well. The bacterium produces a natural toxin that paralyzes the larvae, which reduces feeding activity.
Chemical solutions for controlling sod webworms require careful application and timing. They are effective when applied in late afternoon or early evening, just before the larvae come to the surface.