Grass Grub Prevention

Q - Last year the grubs caused alot of damage and the birds made a real mess with the lawn digging for them. What can you recommend to prevent damage to my lawn areas from grass grub?

A - Grass Grub,Black Beettle and Porina caterpillar are a major problem throughout New Zealand in farming, recreational turf areas and residential lawns from Spring through to Autumn. The grubs develop under your turf surface and feed on the grass roots and plant foliage before growing into an adult moth or beetle which then fly off and lay more eggs in other lawn areas to start the whole cycle all over again. Prevention is the best control if this can be timed correctly. There are two control methods you can try. 1-Chemical or 2-Organic.

Available in the garden centres are granular soil insecticide -Basamid Soil Insecticide or Diazinon. Broadcast these over your lawn area before rainfall or water well in after application. Application of these products should start from October/November and repeat as many times as required.Getting the timing right will break the life cycle of the insect. High numbers of Starlings pecking away on your lawn will tell you that there is some kind of insect activity in your lawn so a good time to consider a control method. When the grubs are developing, it is at this stage the birds start ripping your lawn apart to dig out the grubs. The damaged areas of your lawn may recover and regrow naturally or otherwise will require reseeding. Most importantly keep fertilising the lawn to speed up recovery.

Organic control methods available now are Neem granules and Neem oil and Depact and NutriGro. Depact is a liquid blend of Eucalyptus and Tea Tree oils which when drenched or sprayed into the lawn soil gives immediate contact control of most insects. It also has the added benefit of being a natural fungicide and wetting agent as well.The NutriGro has these two oils plus liquid chicken fertiliser so you get the added benefit of fertilising at the same time. Depact and NutriGro are highly recomended for all you your lawn and garden insect management. The Lawn Guru can supply to you directly Depact and NutriGro.


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