Fixing Grubworm Lawn Damage
Dead patches make the lawn look ugly, but theres something you can do to fix them and restore your lawn to a lush green look. Grubs kill grass because they feed on the roots. If the damage is extensive, it may be difficult to attempt reviving the grass successfully.
If the damaged grass peels off the soil like carpet, then you want to consider removing the dead patches and planting new grass in the bare spots.
In general, here are options on what to do to repair the damage in your lawn:
- Rake over the dead grass to expose the soil and reseed the bare spots with new grass seed.
- If the bare spots are small and the turfgrass is not completely dead, overseed the lawn in early spring to early summer especially if it is Bermuda grass.
- Fill in the bare spots with sod if you do not want to wait for the turf to refill with new grass.
Keep in mind that before the damage occurs, it is best to prevent and control pests in your lawn. If you had any grubs in your turf last year, ensure you put down a grub killer and preventative treatment early spring to stop and prevent damage early enough.
Natural Ways To Get Rid Of Grub Worms In Your Lawn
Grub worms damage your lawn by feeding on the roots, and eventually turn into adult beetles that eat the leaves of other prized plants in your garden. Many homeowners simply treat their lawn with a chemical grub control product, or grub killer, once or twice a year. But there are also a number of natural methods that can be effective ways to get rid of grub worms. Check out the following tips from our readers on how to get rid of grubs naturally.
Q: I have white grub worms all over my garden and I hate to use pesticides. Are there any natural methods to get rid of them?
Answer 1: Earth-friendly beneficial nematodes seek out and kill grubs and other soil-inhabiting insects. They come on a sponge that you soak in water, put in a sprayer and spray your dirt or lawn. They will multiply over time and continue to kill grubs. They have nematodes that seek and destroy flea larvae too. Here’s what one reader says about his experience with nematodes: “Works great. Did my yard last year, my dogs never have fleas unless we go someplace else. The nematodes for grubs work equally as well. Had them in my compost pile, wiped them out. No more grubs!” .
Answer 5: Other readers have seen results using neem oil. Mix as directed with water and spray affected areas of your lawn to deter beetles from laying eggs, as well as keep grubs from feeding. .
Flying Moths Around Your Lawn Or Garden
Remember what we said about beetles perpetuating the reproductive cycle by laying eggs that hatch into grubs?
Well, when you begin to notice beetles flying around your lawn, garden, or yard, you should know that its about going down!
Such moths are looking for healthy lawns to lay their eggs. Lush-green lawns are seen as sufficient food sources that ensure the survival of grubs. Youll need to act fast during this stage to ensure that a grub infestation doesnt break out.
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The 6 Signs Of Grub Damage In Your Lawn
Dont you just love an aptly named creature? Although we definitely dont love grubs, we can all agree those grubby little grubs were perfectly named. When grubs infest your yard, they literally grub your grass and cause damage that can range from bad to nightmare.
Grubs cause unusual and unique damage because they feed on and damage grass underground at the root level. When its root system is compromised, your lawn cant sufficiently intake water and nutrients. Grass cant thrive under such conditions.
If youre concerned that you have grubs grubbing up your yard, then take a look at our list of signs below to confirm or deny your suspicions.
Introduce Natural Predators To Eat The Grubs
Grubs have plenty of natural predators. While predators like raccoons and moles will damage your yard, others wont.
Birds like chickadees, blue jays, and robins, for example, love grubs and will happily eat them all day long. Backyard chickens will also graze the yard and pick up grubs.
To use birds as a natural control method for grubs, make your yard as attractive as possible for the winged visitors.
Add bird feeders, birdbaths, and birdhouses around your yard. This will attract beneficial bird species and help keep your yards grub populations in check.
Pros: Easy, non-toxic, safe for households with kids and pets.
Cons: Birds may damage vegetable gardens or potted plants.
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Let Birds Do The Work
Yes, birds! This is an easy way to get rid of some the grubs on your lawn. Birds like to feed on grubs, so if you attract them to your lawn they may help you out a bit. To attract the birds you can use things like nesting homes or bird feeders. This method – although easy – will most likely not get rid of all the grubs in your yard. You will also be left cleaning up the mess birds leave behind after digging up their meal. We don’t
Does Your Grass Have Severe Damage Such As Full
Again, grubs feed on the root systems and destabilize the connection between the grass and the roots. So what happens when a grub infestation gets to the worst-case level?
Areas that have been weakened by grub feeding will become completely detached. Thats right! Your turf will be able to be easily pulled up and rolled away like a rug!
The time frame for seeing this level of damage is usually between June and October in DFW. Repairing this extreme damage caused by grubs is burdensome and expensive. Save yourself the trouble by catching the grub issue before you have a full-blown grub nightmare on your hands.
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Conventional Ways To Get Rid Of Grubs
If youre looking for a convenient way to get rid of grubs, youre in luck.
There are two primary chemicals used to reduce lawn grub populations: carbaryl and trichlorfon.
Both effectively kill grubs and are generally considered the only options when high concentrations of grubs are found in the fall or early springbefore May.
Research indicates that these compounds will kill 20-80% of grubs when applied in September and 20-55% of grubs when applied in late October.
Heres a breakdown of each:
How To Get Rid Of Grubs In Lawn: 6 Effective Ways + Natural Control
If there are grubs in your lawn, youll start to notice a change in the shade of your turfgrass. Browning of grass during summer and early fall is a likely sign of white grub worms causing the damage. The key to getting rid of lawn grubs is first identifying their signs, and then applying the best control method as I am going to show you here.
The white grub worms in your lawn are a larval stage of scarab beetles. As soon as winter ends, these worms become active when warmth kicks in. They start to damage your lawn by eating grass roots at a high rate.
If you fail to identify and kill lawn grubs on time, theyll develop into pupae, and later into full-grown beetles. The beetles will later start eating lawn grass and other foliage in your yard, causing even further plant damage.
But how do you know youre dealing with grubs in your lawn and not a disease or other problems?
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Do I Have Grubs Or Fungus
Grubs comes to the surface when the weather warms up. And fungus accelerates when the weather goes hot, wet, cold, hot, wet, cold. The damage can sometimes look very similar and difficult to tell them apart. If your roots are gone chances are that is grub damage, if the roots are in tact, it possible fungus.
How A Grub Damaged Lawn Looks
It’s kind of a bummer when you wake up one day and your lawn is turning brown. To add insult to injury, the local skunks and raccoons take up residence in your lawn. What’s going on here? It’s classic White Grub damage. You’ll notice White Grub damage towards the end of September and through October. It’s especially bad during years with heavy rainfall in July and August, or if you over-water your lawn. Summer rains attract grubs to your lawn and keep their eggs alive through hydration, long enough for them to turn into baby grubs. Baby grubs are really hungry and can quickly devastate a lawn, as seen in the image above.
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Soapy Water Lawn Grubs
You can eliminate lawn grubs efficiently with the help of soapy water. Dawn dish soap is popularly used to eliminate grubs on the lawn.
Here are instructions on how to make the solution.
- Add 3 teaspoons of liquid soap to a gallon of water. Stir thoroughly to make a fine mixture.
- Spray this solution on the patches where the grass turned brown. Check to see if you eliminated them successfully.
- If they persist, treat the brown patches once more.
This works best when theres a small infestation in parts of the lawn. If grubs are devouring a large part of your lawn, this method might not be as efficient.
Tip: Add some lemon and mouthwash to make the solution more efficient.
In The Late Summer Or Early Fall:
Lawn grub damage is usually visible from late summer and peaking in the early fall. If you have irregular patches of grass that are brown and dry, check to see if a patch easily peels away from the soil. If a patch of grass lifts up like a carpet with no roots holding it down, you likely have an infestation of lawn grubs.
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What To Do If You Have A Serious Lawn Grub Problem
If you have a serious lawn grub problem, you should address it by first dethatching your lawn every time you see a thatched area. By dethatching thatched areas in your lawn every time you notice them using a dethatcher or a lawn aerator, you will deny lawn grubs the food they need to survive on your lawn. This will make your lawn less conducive for them to thrive on especially early on before they invade your lawns root networks.
Secondly, you should purchase a lawn grub killer. There are many available online on sites such as Amazon. Lawn grub killers are chemical pesticides that have chemicals such as clothianidin, thiamethoxam, and imidacloprid that kill lawn grubs very quickly.
When choosing a lawn grub killer, you should make sure you choose one that causes no harm to humans, other insects, and the environment. This is especially true if your lawn is your childrens favorite playground or if it is somewhere you spend a lot of time. Because it has been proven before that harmful chemicals used on lawns can affect users.
What About Preventative Chemicals
Both carbaryl and trichlorfon are insecticides used to reduce existing grub infestations. They work best, though, when combined with preventative treatments.
Products containing imidacloprid, thiamethoxam, or clothianidin, for example, will reduce 75-100% of lawn grubs when applied in June or July and watered with at least 0.5 of irrigation immediately after application.
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Bonide Insect And Grub Killer
This is also a very powerful grub killer. It has two killer chemicals inside it for grubs and other common lawn pests. The best thing about this formula is obviously the fact that it can kill both grubs and insects.
The second best thing about it is that it has residual insect and grub killing capacity. In other words, it can continue killing grubs and insects months after application.
How Do I Get Rid Of White Grubs In My Lawn
Trust the grass experts at LawnSavers, Proactive Preventive care works best!
All lawns have some grubs. Damage happens if a lawn is weak, or the number of grubs is very high . Watering for an hour and a half to two hours once a week and having your lawn professionally fertilized will make your grass grow deeper, stronger roots and regenerate injured roots faster, limiting grub damage. It will also increase your lawns tolerance level for grubs.
As well, LawnSavers can apply a natural control called predatory nematodes to your lawn starting around early September. These microscopic creatures are applied in the hundreds of millions and swim through moist soils and attack the grubs. Stopping grub damage from occurring.
Digging animals can also be deterred in many ways, from fencing to smells they dont like. Many of our clients have told us they are having good luck with motion-activated sprinklers, such as the Scarecrow.
These techniques will minimize damage from white grubs. Nature being unpredictable, some may still occur, especially since skunks and raccoons are creatures of habit. Animals digging is a clue that you might have grubs, but not definitive proof as squirrels and other animals can scavenge and dig for reasons other than finding grubs.
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Should I Apply Grubex Before Rain
A very important tip is to water the grub control in within a few days. You can wait for a good rain heading your way, and apply the grub control before the rain. The chemical in some grub controls will break down in hot, dry weather. So if you leave the chemical on your lawn and not watered in, it wont be effective.
How Do I Know If I Have A Problem
Affected areas will feel soft and spongy to walk on, and turf in these spots can be lifted up with ease. Carefully fold back the turf and note the number of grubs exposed. Eight to 10 grubs per square foot can damage a lawn.
Damage is most severe in the spring and fall when moisture levels in the soil are high. During drier periods, the eggs may be killed and surviving larvae can be found deeper in the soil. Extremely dry summers destroy many eggs and newly hatched grubs. Mature grubs can be found near the surface in late summer and early fall.
Often, skunks and other small mammals will pull back the turf to feed on grubs in the spring or fall. This secondary damage to your lawn, as well as flocks of starlings and blackbirds feeding on your lawn, are signs of a grub infestation. If you have any of these natural predators digging at your grass, check for white grubs. Many people notice these indicators first.
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Do Grubs Cause Brown Spots
Grubs damage grass by eating the roots, leading to small brown patches that eventually widen in a relatively uniform way. Patches caused by grubs will feel sponge-like and roll up when raked because of the root damage. To kill existing grubs and prevent future grub damage, use Scotts®GrubEx®1 every spring.
What Are The Signs
- The easiest way to tell if you have got lawn grubs is by looking for irregular brown patches throughout the lawn.
- As lawn grubs dine on the roots of a lawn, the grass will also be easy to pull away from the ground and wont have any roots attached.
- You will find an increase in activity from other wildlife species. Birds, racoons and other rodents feed on lawn grub worms and will have higher interest than normal in your lawn.
- A special increase in beetles flying around the lawn, females will be scouting the area for a place to lay their eggs.
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How Do You Know Grubs Are Causing Damage To Your Lawn
There are several indications that the brown patch in your lawn is caused by grubs:
- grub-loving birds and animals, including raccoons, skunks, and moles, are digging up your lawn and,
- areas of the lawn feel squishy, like freshly laid sod, caused by grubs are eating away at the roots.
To determine if its really a grub problem and not a lawn disease, remove a one-square-foot patch of the damaged lawn to a depth of about 2, as well as a few areas of the lawn that are green and healthy. If you only see a few grubs, it may not be necessary to treat, especially if the turf is healthy. If you find six or more in a square foot, its probably time for insecticide treatment.
How Bad Are Grubs For The Lawn
Grubs, which are the larval, or immature, stage of several species of beetles and chafers, can damage a lawn by feeding on the roots of your grass. Healthier grass can tolerate more grub feeding, and all grass can tolerate some grub feeding.
A grub infestation will cause patches of thinning turf, and these patches will gradually increase in size. Often times grub damaged grass will pull out very easily at the roots.
What we often hear from homeowners is that they believe they have grubs because animals like moles, skunks, crows and racoons are digging in the lawn. This isnt a reliable clue, however, because grub infestations arent always accompanied by animal damage and animal damage doesnt always result from a grub infestation. These animals feed on other insects in the lawn, like earthworms, which are beneficial to the health of the lawn. That all said, if you do have grubs and animals are digging for them in the lawn, that can be detrimental to the health of your turf and to the appearance of your yard.
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