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Pests in the Lawn. Insect pests in Lawns.

Lawn Destroying Insects

Leatherjackets l Chafer Grubs l Ants l Moles l Mining Bees | Worms | are prime examples of 'Lawn Destroying Insects'

Lawns do not suffer from too many insect pests or bugs. (The same cannot be said of other lawn troubles!) Pests are things that crawl of fly - Diseases have no legs i.e. Fungus and virus diseases.

As with most problems - and lawn pests are certainly that - prevention is far better than cure. However, with lawns, there are often no sympotoms until the pest has got a good hold on their meal, and we see the inevitable results well after the infestation has started.

Prevention and cure of lawn destroying insects

mole hills on a lawn.

The pests that cause problems are normally visible to the human eye - although often, they are under the surface of the lawn, so we have to look for and recognise the symptoms. The most common of garden pests - visible aphids - are not a problem for lawns. So other than ants - we normally have to get below the surface!

Insect pests are normally easy to recognise and deal with before there is too much damage. Diseases tend to infect a large area of turf, and are thereafter more difficult to deal with. Insect problems start in more localised patches, and the damage is normally to the grass roots - rather than the plant as a whole.

Obviously, root damage affects the whole plant, but dealing with the insect pests soon as identified, normally means that the grass will soon re-grow or recover. Small regular shaped brown patches in your lawn are normally the result of an insect pest. You can soon identify at the link re brown patches.

Lawn care is important as a preventative method - simply because a good dense sward of turf is better equipped to shrug off a few hungry grubs!

Lawn Disease problems on the other hand, tend to linger and spread unseen for quite some time before damage is apparent.

  • Leatherjackets - The main insect pest is probably the larvae of the Crane fly (Daddy Longlegs) - the Leatherjacket which lives just below the lawn surface - feeding on the grass roots. Left unchecked, a serious infestation of this pest can result in large areas of brown patches.
  • Chafer Grubs - are the larvae of the Chafer beetle and are not as much of a problem as the leatherjackets. However, for the pristine lawn owner, they are a pest. At the same time, they make a good feed for birds such as starlings and blackbirds.
  • Ants Damage Lawns and the main Spoilers of lawn picnics and generally troublesome little creatures. Ants damage the lawn if present in large numbers. Together with this they have a rather nasty sting if you are unfortunate enough to sit on or near their nest. They are not the easiest of pests to deal with.
  • Moles - Moles are a huge problem in lawns if you are unfortunate to have them! There are ways to prevent them, and preventing moles in the first place is MUCH better than sorting out the problems you will have once they are present.
  • Mining bees - The good news about Mining Bees is that they don't sting. The bad news if you want to be rather pessimistic, is that they tunnel into the lawn to build their nest and leave a small mound of earth on the lawn. I find them very fascinating to study! They probably do more good in the garden overall, than bad!
  • Earthworms in Lawns - I have to bite my lip when I hear of Earthworms being described as lawn pests. But, enough of you email me to complain about worm casts and the like, so I have to accept that I am very much a minority as far as Earthworms in Lawns are concerned!
  • Dogs and Lawns - I will include these - which are a problem rather than pest within our definition of the term 'pest'!

Related | Brown Patches Identified



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