No matter how much aerating, seeding, plating, fertilizing, weeding, mulching, and irrigating you do, your landscape and lawn is still at the mercy of pests. Because they are so prevalent and can reproduce so quickly, it can be a challenge to keep them under control. But with the right knowledge and preventative tools, you can keep the pesky creatures out of your yard and away from your plants.
Billbugs are a type of beetle and are found in every type of grass, and usually aren’t noticed until a brown patch appears in the middle of your lawn. Their numbers are usually the highest in sod-based lawns, and they feed off the leaves and crown areas of plants. Heavy populations can destroy a lawn with alarming speed. Keeping them under control is best accomplished by using a pesticide in early May, which will kill the adults before they have a chance to lay eggs.
White grubs are another damaging insect found in almost types of grass. Their larvae feed on the roots of grass, killing the plant from the bottom up. Because they live in the soil, they are difficult to see and may be unnoticed until damage begins to appear in the lawn. The best way to control a white grub infestation is to have a healthy lawn to begin with, as weaker lawns are more susceptible to damage. Pesticides are effective, although they will not kill the entire population. Treatments combined with aeration during the optimal weeks (generally midsummer) usually give the best results.
Aphids are a major problem in gardens and can also be found in lawn areas as well. Aphids are very small – about 1/10th of an inch in length – but can be very damaging to your plants. They feed on plants by sucking the sap out of the leaves, which weakens the plant. This interferes with the plants ability to undergo photosynthesis, which can stunt the plant’s growth or cause it to wilt and die altogether. Controlling aphids can be as simple as regular watering (as the water will wash them away), or by attracting/releasing beneficial insects like lady bugs to attack and eat the aphids.
Moles are a common pest that can also wreak havoc on your landscape. They dig holes throughout your yard and can easily destroy a garden by constantly digging in the soil. They also open up your lawn to invasion by pests that will use their subterranean tunnels to quickly move around your yard unseen. The best way to control mole populations is to use traps or poisons. These can be very effective but should be used with caution if you have small children or pets. Whether you are in Franklin, Brentwood, Nashville, or the surrounding Middle Tennessee area – know that you can count on Gold Star Landscaping for all of your Landscaping needs.