Tuesday, April 19, 2011
As summer approaches and the temperature rises insect populations grow. How many times have you been at a picnic when some kind of insect bothered you, while eating your burger and chips? It’s not really a picnic until you have been bitten! Under ideal conditions certain insects can wipe out your whole lawn overnight. Look for increased digging activity from birds, moles and skunks indicating that bugs are present in your lawn.
Common insects found in lawns are Bill bugs, Grubs, Ticks, Ants, Fleas, Sod webworms, Chinch bugs and Armyworms. Understanding the insect’s life cycle helps you to identify them and achieve proper control. Do not confuse insect damage with other things that may turn your grass brown, such as fertilizer burn, dog spots, or fungus damage.
Chinch bugs have flat white wings that fold on their backs. Chinch bugs suck the juice from the grass blades. The area turns brown and has yellow margins. Chinch bugs attack growing grass. They can spread quickly across the lawn destroying the grass. Chinch bugs thrive in hot, sunny weather; therefore, you will not see them in shady areas. To determine if Chinch bugs are present, cut out the top and bottom of a coffee can and tap it into the soil about 1-inch deep then fill with a few inches of water. If Chinch bugs are in the lawn they will float to the surface. Or you can cut a 6-inch piece of sod from your lawn and turn it upside down over a white piece of paper. Rub the grass blades vigorously to see if Chinch bugs drop onto the paper.
Chinch bugs and most surface insects listed above can be controlled with Jonathan Green’s Lawn Insect Control. They also may be controlled with a fertilizer-combination product like Jonathan Green’s Summer Survival Insect Control plus Lawn Fertilizer.
Multiple Grub species cause damage to lawns causing large brown areas that can be pulled back to find Grubs in the soil. Grubs have a white appearance and they curl into a U-shape. Mature Grubs can be as large as your pinky finger. Grubs lay their eggs during May and June so apply a control at that time. Effective controls include Jonathan Green Grub Control, Jonathan Green Pest Kill Grub and Insect Control or Jonathan Green’s Summer Survival Insect Control plus Lawn Fertilizer.
Moths or other flying insects around your yard such as Japanese Beetles may indicate that the Grubs have laid their eggs and these insects are in their adult stage. Rake out any dead grass to eliminate thatch and water the lawn after application. Watering helps to move the product into the soil to accomplish better control.
Nuisance pests include Fleas, Ticks (Deer Ticks), Ants, Chiggers, Earwigs and Spiders. They do not damage the lawn but are unwanted around your property. Apply insect controls, like Jonathan Green’s Lawn Insect Control, around your foundation and on the lawn areas to prevent these insects from coming into your home. The same controls, like Jonathan Green’s Pest Kill Grub and Insect Control, listed above under Chinch bugs are effective if labeled for this use.
There are certain non-treatment approaches to controlling insect pests. A healthy growing lawn is the best defense since turf grass can tolerate a certain amount of insects present in the lawn. Use proper maintenance and fertilizing techniques and purchase grass seed mixtures that contain Endophytes, a naturally occurring beneficial fungus that deters insect activity. An excellent source of endophytes can be found in Jonathan Green’s Black Beauty Ultra Mixture. Look for the oval sticker about endophytes on most of my grass seed packages. De-thatch regularly to keep your grass healthy by taking away a place for insects to harbor in your lawn.
Browse the web to find what these lawns insects look like; and when they appear so you can achieve better control. Remember, follow all label directions and contact your local garden center or hardware store or extension agent, if you have certain questions about insects in your area.Back