With a new home comes a new lawn. Construction home builders typically lay down sod lawns for new homes and that means more insects to worry about. There are so many types of insects that can live in and under your lawn and the sod webworm is among them.
Starting off as a caterpillar before becoming a moth, this webworm is one of the more damaging lawn insects to turf grass. It begins with damaging the blades of the grass making them look chewed up and raggedy until the leaf is gone. The older larvae will cut/chew blades of the grass to form tunnels within the grass and making a silk sheet web among the dead areas.
Though, Bermuda grass is more popular to find them in, it’s not uncommon to find them in St. Augustine or zoysia grass also.
The female moth will lay her eggs on the blades of the grass or stem and in turf debris. She can lay up to 15 creamy-white eggs at a time. These eggs will then hatch within 10 days and over the next 6 weeks the caterpillar will molt several times before maturing into an adult moth.
During the day, these webworms can be found burrowed within the soil only to come out at night to feed on new and healthy grass. If you start seeing brown patches throughout your lawn, you can walk your lawn in the evening and if you see multiple tan to brownish moths flying from your lawn or flowerbeds, you may have an infestation of sod webworms. You can also inspect the lawn in the early morning by separating the grass blades and if you find a cream or greenish caterpillar about ¾” long with dark spots, this may be webworms.
Fall months appear to be the most active months for webworms partly because there are more females that have laid eggs throughout the summer months and they have now hatched.
If you feel you have an insect or sod webworm infestation in your lawn, call Safe Earth Pest Control today. Webworm damage may cause the lawn to die but, in most cases, it can recover with the proper treatment plan. Call now to get started. 214-321-2847