White Grubs in North Florida Lawns
White Grubs are soil dwelling insect larva of various beetle species that effect the North Florida lawn including June Beetles and masked chafers. The grubs are fat and commonly found partially curled into the shape of the letter c. They may range from off white to tan with dark colored heads. Unlike Billbugs white grubs have 3 pairs of legs located near the head of the body.
Damage to Lawns by White Grubs:
The larval form of the beetles is what do the most damage to sod. They feed on the roots causing dead areas through the lawn. Damage can first appear as small spots a few inches across of yellowing then browning grass blades, but will enlarge as the grubs continue to feed. Heavy infestations completely destroy the sod and it can be rolled back as if it were cut with a shovel or sod cutter.
White Grub Feeding Habits:
White Grubs are major pests on Zoysia lawns and tend to favor Bermuda grass as well. They are sometimes found on other grass varieties.
Reproduction and Life Cycle of White Grubs:
Depending on the species of beetle larvae, white grubs can take from one to four years to complete their life cycle!
Checking for White Grub Populations:
Control may be needed once white grubss have been identified and numbers reach 3 or more per square foot area. Checking for Billbugs | White Grubs should be done in several areas of grass through the yard.
Control of White Grubs in Jax | St. Augustine | North Florida Lawns:
Natural Control of White Grubs:
Moles, skunks and armadillos feed on the grubs and will tear up the lawn looking for them. I have always welcomed the sight of mole tracks in my yard knowing they are doing their job and consuming mass amounts of grubs in the lawn. When the grubs are gone the moles will be gone as well off searching for a better food supply.
Chemical Control of White Grubs:
Billbugs and their larvae can be controlled with chemicals such as Diazanon. Orthene, Oftanol,Trichlorfon and Sevin.
When using a liquid apply on to moist grass and apply ½ inch of water after treatment to move the chemical into the root zone of the grass.
When using a granular irrigate with ½ inch of water immediately after treatment.
A Word of Caution with Chemicals from Me to You:
Perhaps it is my many years of dealing with the people in the Agriculture industry who have lived long lives and encountered many troubles with chemicals during their careers, but I cannot talk about chemical control without at least my mentioning the following concerns.
Make sure to read all directions carefully and apply liquid sprays diluted with water at the application rate recommended on the product label for the pest you are targeting and do not mix stronger than suggested target treatment rates.
Remember that insecticides are POISONS and approach their use with caution, wear protective eye gear and chemical resistant gloves and rubber boots as well as long sleeved shirts and pants. Remember to wash these items separately from other laundry immediately after application and shower after getting the clothes into the laundry.
Lastly but most importantly, pay particular attention to lock unused chemicals up away from visiting children and pets.
So that’s it on the speech about chemicals, I hope I have been able to help you know what’s wrong and how to treat it so now you have to help me sleep easier by indulging me with these motherly concerns, fair trade don’t you think? I’ll sleep easier knowing that you did.