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Fall Armyworms: Don’t let them invade your lawn! September 17, 2019

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Fall Armyworms: Don’t let them invade your lawn!

This time of year homeowners should begin inspecting their lawns for fall armyworms. We have already had some reports in the Birmingham area in mid-July. Problems with armyworms start in extreme south Alabama in late July to early August and then move northward. Well-fertilized and watered Bermudagrass and new Bermudagrass sod is the turfgrass most commonly attacked by armyworms. Homeowners frequently notice the worms shortly after their grass starts to thin.

Bermudagrass and Zoysia can recover even before frost. Fescue may have to be re-seeded. The good news for Fescue lawns is fall overseeding application is around the corner! Image

White Moths lay eggs on vertical surfaces like privacy fences. Eggs hatch and larva crawl down to the turf. Begin eating green blades of grass and turn in to adult armyworms. Damage is usually seen first adjacent to these areas. Birds are commonly seen feeding in lawns with armyworm infestations and can be a good indicator of a problem.

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Fall Armyworms are susceptible to cold, and cannot survive the winter temperatures in the central and southern United States. Each summer, adult moths fly from the north from Central and South America. Armyworm damage often seems to appear "overnight", but the small worms may be feeding for some time before being noticed. Most of the damage is caused by the oldest/largest caterpillars which eat much larger quantities of foliage.

Like an army, they can march on to other lawns

Armyworms are also mobile will move into a previously non-infested area in search of food once an adjacent field or lawn has been defoliated. They may hatch and begin in an adjacent lawn and then move into yours. So it is important to not only inspect your lawn but watch your neighbor’s lawn as well for signs of damage.

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Signs of Armyworms

• Brown spots of grass around vertical surfaces like walls and fences and trees.

• A gradual progression of brown grass from the initial point

• You see caterpillar-like worms in the lawn

If you do not see the army of armyworms ask yourself are you watering regularly? Mowing too low?

Treatment for armyworms #callwaynes. For current lawn customers, armyworm treatment is covered in your plan, and we'll treat for free! After the treatment avoid moving and watering your lawn for 3-4 days. This time period allows the armyworms to come in contact with the treatment.

Why didn’t Waynes preemptively treat for armyworms? We use something called Integrated Pest Management (IPM). This simply means Waynes only uses products when they are needed. This keeps excess chemicals out of the environment.

If you would like more information or if you believe Fall Armyworms are attacking your lawn, call Waynes for a free inspection.

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