Ask a Question
Notify Me On Question Update
Email this Question
My front yard has large patches of dead grass. Originally I thought it might be a result of grubs, but dug down and didn't see any larvae or grub worms. The condition is worsening and now I've noticed pencil-eraser size holes throughout the dry areas. Do you know what this is and how to prevent or stop it?
Rate This FAQ
I suspect the holes you see in the dry areas may be made by emerging lawn pests, such as billbug, but I'm not sure. The holes may also be from bird beaks as they forage for insects (yay, birds!) Here are some hints on how to scout and diagnose for billbugs and other lawn pests: Dig up a 6 by 6 inch square of your turfgrass, including 2 inches of soil, put it in a bucket and pull it apart, looking for any insects or larvae. Collect any/all you find. Identify the insects by referring to these USU Extension Fact Sheets:
White grubs, at
Sod webworm, at
Cranberry girdler, at
There's only one generation of billbug per year, they may be emerging as adults about now. Most of the damage is already done for the year, so if you don't find any pests in the turf sample, wait until next May to treat for the pests. Once summer cools off (highs in the 80's), you should fertilize the affected areas to promote new growth and vigor, to repair the damage. Also, be sure to check the thickness of the thatch layer in your turf. If it's thicker than one-half inch, plan to have your lawn core aerated in early fall. Aeration helps promote thatch decomposition. Thatch is a protective habitat for the billbug, so it's best to minimize it.
Submit Your Suggestion
Other Questions In This Topic
- What is a pre-emergent and a post-emergent?
- I live at an elevation of 6000ft. I am West of Cedar City in the mountains. I would like to know, what is the best low water and high traffic grass I should plant. I would like the type of grass that will stay green as early and as long as possible as well. Thank You Also, any good shade varieties?
- We have solanum dulcamara, creeping nightshade, growing in our back yard. I could use some advice in how to get rid of it. Also, how dangerous is the plant to touch? Is the plant dangerous only when ingested?
- Why do lilacs do so well?
- I have 30 acres of dry farm high on the west side of cache valley and would like like to cover it with many trees that are likely to survive and will eventually provide shade. What should I plant?
- I have a large Pinion pine that we trimmed back the lower branches on last fall, The grass is not doing well there due to limited light, could I add a flower bed there instead, and if so what type of plants would do well in my VERY clay soil. Also isnt' there something about not planting flowers over/next to a tree trunk? thanks
- I have three large Austrian Pine trees that I would like to xeriscape under. Do you have suggestions for low-water use plants that will grow in mostly shady conditions under pine trees?
- I have many large 20-25 feet scrub oak trees on my property. I would like to thin and prune them from the tops in order for them to look like the lower scrub oak I have seen in the area, about 10-15 feet. How low can I cut them from their tops without injuring them and what is the best time of year to do so?