Wait are those brown spots on your lawn persisting no matter what you do? Yup, it happens from time to time that your lawn is infected with pests leaving it looking dull or lifeless even though you mulch and care for it on a regular basis.
Lawn pests are common and they can take away from the health of your yard if not treated and controlled early on. But, the very first step to dealing with lawn pests is to figure out what ails your yard or rather recognize them and thus prevent their infestation from growing.
Common Lawn Pests
If you find fruit, plants or leaves munched on then it could very well be Japanese beetles infesting your yard or garden. A sure sign of such an infestation is skeletonized leaves. They usually attack around the months of June and begin from the top of foliage down to the very last leaf near the base. They use the soil to lay eggs which turn the soil white in those areas. Start searching for browning patches or white sporadic spots during the mid-spring, which is when the grubs arise.
If your grass turns reddish-brown or yellow in color, then you have a chinch bug infestation. These critters can be difficult to spot early on as they feed on just about all types of grasses and are known to suck the life out of grass, injecting toxin in the process that loosens the roots.
These are the most devastating of all pests and are commonly found residing in the Southeast. They tunnel through the soil and eat through decaying matter, insects, shoots, roots – just about anything in their path. A lawn that has mole crickets will tend to show brown patches sporadically with the soil feeling somewhat spongy. Tell-tale signs of such an infestation are small tunnels under the soil and dying grass. Treatment is usually the use of insecticides.
European Crane Fly
Found residing mostly in the North-western parts of the country, the European Crane Fly looks like a larger mosquito. Their larvae hatch and fall on the ground feeding on grass roots through winter. The damage they do is visible only in spring. Instead of a lush green outgrowth, you are left with stale grass. If you find grass missing or yellowing as spring approaches, then it is definitely the European Crane Fly.
Getting rid of lawn bugs requires chemicals and insecticides. But first try non-invasive methods and cures before opting for insecticides. Reducing water or fertilizer use can have just as positive an impact as insecticides. Aerate your lawn, mower regularly and water as much as is needed – these are the keys to prevent pests in the first place.