What Does Professional Pest Control Use on Lawns?
Professional pest control is used to protect the lawn from harmful pests and fungi, or to prevent infestations that could lead to costly repairs. Most insects are controlled by the application of insecticides, but some insects must be treated at certain times in their life cycles for effective control.
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Insects that cause damage to your turf are a major concern and should be addressed early. These include chinch bugs, mole crickets, cutworms, sod webworms, and fall armyworms.
Slugs and snails are common pests of home lawns, and they can be difficult to eliminate because of their nocturnal nature. They can cause damage to tender ornamental plants, but they are best controlled with specially formulated baits that contain iron phosphate.
Ticks are another common problem that can be effectively controlled with spray treatments. These treatments, which are formulated as liquids or granules, are applied according to label directions over the turf area. They are more time-consuming and expensive than baits and are less commonly used in home lawns, although they can be effective if the problem is severe.
Lawn caterpillars are a significant problem in some areas but can be controlled with a broadcast foliar insecticide treatment. These insecticides are formulated as liquids, which are mixed and sprayed over the turf area, or as granular treatments, which are spread over the lawn using a spreader.
Mole crickets are a serious problem in some areas but can be controlled by applying a treatment that contains a pyrethroid insecticide. These insecticides are labeled for use around a wide range of domestic animals and can be effective in controlling pests on lawns with a history of infestation.
Sod webworms are a common pest of golf greens, but they can also be found in some home lawns. These insects cut the grass blades above the thatch line and pull them into their tunnels to eat them. They can produce several generations per year, and the adults of the second generation emerge in August and September.
They are weak fliers and may live only a few days. The larvae are dark brown, but they can be easily recognized by their chewing action on the grass blades. They are often found in small, irregular patches of grass and can make the turf look drab or unkempt.
A reputable lawn care company will treat mole crickets and other insects that can injure the turf. These insects are persistent pests that will require multiple applications of treatments to achieve and maintain effective control.
Ticks on lawns are often caused by stray pets or wild animals, and limiting access to these animals helps reduce the number of ticks that can be found on the lawn. Fenced lawns are generally a lower risk for tick problems, and removing tall, weedy vegetation from the area will also reduce tick numbers.
Keeping pets penned and confined to one area will also limit the spread of ticks, as will keeping tall weedy vegetation low in areas that are frequented by people and wildlife. These methods also help to prevent the development of spittle masses, which are a sign that a lawn is infested with spittlebugs.