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Signs Of Grub Damage

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Posted on: Jul 11, 2024Luis M Pérez

The larval stage of beetles, such as Japanese beetles, June bugs, and chafers, can cause significant damage to lawns. Here’s how to identify grub damage and take steps to mitigate it.

Irregular Brown Patches

The most common sign of grub damage is irregular brown patches on your lawn. These patches appear because the grubs feed on the grass, causing it to die.

Spongy Turf

A lawn affected by grubs will feel spongy underfoot. This is because the roots are eaten away, leaving the grass loosely attached to the soil. You might be able to lift the turf like a carpet, revealing the grubs beneath.

Increased Animal Activity

Birds, skunks, raccoons, and moles are attracted to grubs and will dig up your lawn to feed on them. If you notice holes and disturbed areas, it could indicate a grub infestation.

Grass Wilting

Despite regular watering, grass affected by grubs often wilts and appears drought-stressed. This happens because the damaged roots can’t absorb water effectively.

Confirming Grub Presence

To verify a grub problem, dig up a section of turf about a square foot in size in the affected area. Check the soil for white, C-shaped larvae. Finding five or more grubs per square foot suggests a significant infestation.

Addressing Grub Damage

1. Chemical Treatments

Apply insecticides specifically designed for grub control. Timing is crucial; these treatments are most effective in late summer or early fall when grubs are small and actively feeding.

2. Cultural Practices

Promote a healthy lawn through proper mowing, watering, and fertilization. A well-maintained lawn can better withstand and recover from grub damage.

Understanding the signs of grub damage and implementing effective control measures can help you maintain a healthy and beautiful lawn. Regular monitoring and timely interventions are key to preventing severe grub infestations.


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