Lawn Grubs

lawn grubs, milky spore, organic pest control, green gardening

Lawn Grubs

Lawn Grubs - Find out if you have them and if so, what you can do to eliminate them, along with moles and Japanese Beetles from your lawn.

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Many people invoke issues about lawn grubs and how they can be managed. The most probable time for lawn grubs to start appearing in most of the country is later summer and into the fall.

Once these insects reach a substantial population they can easily and promptly devastate your turf. Thankfully this happens to a relatively small percentage of turf areas in a given year.

Lawn Grubs - How Do You Know If You Have Them?

Lawn grubs, more accurately called white grubs, lie hidden below your turf, incessantly feeding on the roots of your grass, causing wilting and irregular shaped brown areas.

Although, since you have brown spots in your turf, it does not inevitably mean you have lawn grubs. In late summer there can be a number of conditions that cause lawn brown spots.

One way to examine for these "C-Shaped" grubs is to check beneath the affected turf areas.

Here is how you do it: Cut the turf back in the affected area at the margins where the brown areas meet the healthy, unaffected turf areas.

A lawn grub count of more than 10 to 12 grubs per square foot will lead to the wilting and browning of your turf.

There Can Be Other Factors At Play Causing Turf Damage:

There are other turf related problems that can cause turf wilting and browning as well. One classic area that can be mistaken for lawn grubs is shady areas, as the roots are typically shallow rooted, and can be lifted very easily. Shady turf areas are typically not affected by lawn grubs.

Additionally, many lawns were easily pulled up in the early spring and grubs were blamed. Once grass dies, regardless of the cause, roots will rot away and the grass is very simple to tear out.

Do not try to diagnose grub damage in the spring from the previous season's damage as this is very difficult to do, even if you have dead turf and minimal root structure.

Another definitive symptom of lawn grubs is from skunks and raccoons digging up the lawn at night searching for grubs. Moles may or may not be feeding on grubs so are not a positive indicator of grub problems.

Why do lawn grubs affect several lawns in a neighborhood and not others.

Keep in mind the adult stage of the grub life cycle is a beetle, which can fly. Random chance is part of the answer.

But adult beetles commonly lay eggs in full-sun lawn areas with adequate soil moisture. July is ordinarily the month that these eggs are laid.

So if it has been dry, and you have watered your turf you are surrounded by dry turf, the beetle will likely select your lawn.

Can You Predict If You Will Have Lawn Grubs?

As insect cycles are difficult to determine, there are various indicators that will give you clues to the chances you will have a grub population.

The first indication is if you see lots of adult beetles on the lawn in July.

Also the beetle known as Masked Chafer, which is the adult of the annual white grub are beetle that are tan and they are active shortly before evening.

Japanese beetles feed on ornamental shrubs and plants are are typically active only during the daytime hours. Keep a watchful eye on your lawn starting in the middle of August and into September.

Look for wilting and browning areas, and be sure the check the root zone for grubs.

Can Grub Damage Be Prevented?

You have some options to consider. One of the more extreme options is to stop irrigating your lawn during the month of July and let the turf go dormant. This will deter beetles from laying their eggs in your lawn. Of course the downside of this method is the turf is brown during the middle of summer.

A much better method to investigate is the use of a lawn grub control substance. If there has been known problems in your lawn or your neighbors turf, you ought to employ a natural grub control substance.

How Can I Get Rid Of Lawn Grubs?

One of the best methods to protect your turf against an infestation of lawn grubs is through the application of a organic, bacterial product.

While commercially usable non-organic applications will do a great job in killing the grubs, you will be introducing poisons to your yard.

This has the potential of killing song birds, polluting the water table and exposing unhealthy chemicals to your family and pets. The preferred control is a product called Milky Spore, and controls the lawn grubs for up to 10 to 12 years.

How Can You Repair Your Lawn After Lawn Grub Damage?

In order to bring life back to a grub infested turf, you should employ some lawn restoration methods.

Your initial step in turf restoration would be to take a rake and clean up all of the dead debris.

Next as the temperatures begin to cool in the fall, be sure to thoroughly irrigate the damaged turf areas. This may cause some of the damaged root zones to recover.

If you encounter areas that don't recover or are completely bare or very thin, you should reseed these areas. The best time to start your restoration is when the heat of summer has past. This is generally around Labor Day for many parts of the country.

For more information on Milky Spore click the link go to that article.