“Moths! I see moths!” seems to be the topic of conversation happening here at the garden center. After what we deemed to be the sod webworm apocalypse last year it isn’t any wonder that people are jumping in their cars and racing to our location to bulk up in preparation for this years impending doom at the first sightings. It’s enough to warrant our own episode on Doomsday Preppers. The good news is we have everything you need to help battle these lawn zombies and their insatiable appetite for our St. Augustine, that seem to be threatening the safety of our lawns and our inner peace.
So if the sight of moths in the landscape causes your eye to twitch and sends shivers down your spine as you flash back to the memories of last year’s horrors, Don’t hit the panic button yet, the moths are not the administers of decimation in your lawn, they are simply the carrier. Seeking out a lush area of your lawn she will lay her eggs among the blades of grass and depart. Other than using your landscape as the incubator for death and destruction she is no real threat to the tender blades. Once her spawn have hatched the destruction begins. Each caterpillar born with only the will to eat, will begin to consume your lawn. Chewing off the leaves and stems above the crown, leaving brown areas in the lawn up to the size of a baseball in the early stages. The most severe damage usually begins to occur mid to late summer and can continue into the late fall as we have experienced. As new generations emerge, the larvae continue to grow and feed, the once baseball sized areas begin to enlarge and merge into larger, brown patches.
There is hope. You can prepare for and battle the zombies in your lawn. We recommend a two step treatment, our Dynamic Duo. Our Dynamic Duo consists of a granular and spray application. The spray application is for the take down of the carrier of destruction, the moths. The spray will be an initial take down of those visible in the lawn and shrubs. Additional applications may be needed if you notice the moth populations increasing in your lawn in the weeks to come as new generations of moths emerge. To control the green grubbing caterpillars we suggest using a granular to broadcast throughout your lawn. This brings about the end of those little blade munchers preventing them from being able to mature into adults and unleashing the next generation of impending doom.
If you are seeing brown patches or moths in the yard stop by and we will help you build your Dynamic Duo from the several products we have available. For the brown patches bring in a sample of your lawn and a photo for us to examine as well. The sample should contain roughly a 12” x 12” area of grass with the soil, half being the damaged area and the other half being the undamaged area (see Ref a). Our friendly staff will examine the sample and help determine the right solution to take care of your lawns particular need. We will also make recommendations on products to help restore the damaged areas.