White grubs (WG) damage turf by chewing off roots close to the soil surface. The voracious feeding of the larger late 2nd and 3rd stage grubs, when combined with hot and dry conditions, can result in quick and extensive loss of turf from late August through mid-October. In spring damage only occurs under exceptionally warm and dry conditions. All cool-season and many warm-season grasses are susceptible to WG. Being alert to the symptoms of WG infestations helps avoid unexpected loss.
Early signs of infestation include gradual thinning, yellowing, and wilting in spite of adequate soil moisture, and the appearance of scattered, irregular dead patches. The patches grow and join together until large turf areas are affected. Due to the WGs’ tunneling activity, infested turf feels spongy underfoot and can be pulled up like a carpet, exposing the C-shaped WG. Secondary, often more severe, damage can be caused by vertebrate predators (e.g., crows, skunks, raccoons, moles), that tear up or tunnel under the turf to feed on the grubs.
Grubs may be found feeding throughout the root-zone. The majority will be within 2” inches below the thatch. As the soil cools in October, the grubs move to deeper soil layers to overwinter in a more or less inactive state. As the soil warms up in spring, the grubs return to the root zone to feed for another 4–6 weeks in April and May before pupating in the soil at 2–8” depth. After 1–2 weeks, the new beetle emerges to restart the life cycle.
A fall lawn renovation and seeding to repair grub damage can cost 3 times the amount of the preventative treatment itself.
“An ounce of prevention is much better than a pound of cure.” Because of this, we apply our season long grub prevention* and control products during the months of June and July to prevent damage to your lawn by young and aggressively feeding grub larvae in the fall months ahead that can result in costly lawn renovations.
* Guaranteed Grub Control! Once the grub control is watered in properly following the initial application, if there is any failure or breakthrough, and your lawn suffers any grub damage we will repair and reseed any damaged areas completely free of charge.
If your lawn has suffered grub damage in the past, or you feel your lawn may be prone to grub infestation, please call our office for current programs and pricing @ 973.515.0691