LSU Garden News – Send troops, Army worms are here

Sod webs were biblical last winter. To prevent this from happening, military worms are now camping. They are completely gone, causing headaches for many homeowners.

If you notice large brown spots on your lawn, it may be caused by an army of worms that feed on grasses such as Bermuda, St. Augustine, and 100 centimeters.

This is how the caterpillars got their name. Within a few days, they destroyed large swathes of farmland.

Most homeowners do not notice the damage until a large lawn begins to die. After eating a large area, the caterpillars move to nearby fields and fields.

It is a good practice to explore your lawn in the summer to avoid damage from army bugs, chin bugs and sod worms to avoid extensive damage.

When you are awake, you may notice adult moths flying outdoors at night. Moths are gray to light brown with small 1 to 2 inch wings. The upper wings are brown with white spots, and the inner layers are white.

Like most other insects, the army worm has four stages of life – eggs, larvae, pumpkins, and adults.

Females lay thousands of eggs on the trunks of plants or structures near leaves and stems. Eggs hatch and larvae grow in two to three weeks. Then they go down to the ground to learn and in one to two weeks they come out as adults. Unfortunately, there are many generations of worms in a year.

It is a little strange to see such an invasion of an army worm, as they are exposed to the cold, generally cold weather of February. However, years of epidemics, such as the one we are experiencing, continue to occur.

Grass-damaged areas can be likened to drought-stricken areas, but you can tell if there is a separate line between the affected areas and the non-affected areas.

The caterpillars are very active in the mornings and evenings, and outdoor lights can be seen.

When scanning for grass damage, look for chewing leaves that spread on the edges. You can also find green caterpillars. The leaves also look like skeletons. Another great indicator is the large group of birds that feed.

The initial damage is minimal, but as the larvae grow, they eat more plants and damage becomes more rapid in the later stages of development.

It is important to know in advance. Large numbers of worms can cause extensive damage, so take time to walk and look for caterpillars and signs of damage.

There are two types of organic control. Products containing active ingredients Bt (Bacillus thuringiensis) or spinosad are considered organic alternatives. For severe invasions, artificial chemicals may be needed. Effective products contain one or more of the following active ingredients: acephate, bifenthrin, carbaryl or clothianidin.

Read and follow all account instructions. Chemicals for fertilized eggs need to be repeated in seven to 14 days.

When pesticides are used, pests and animals that feed in addition to pollen can be harmed. Spray pollen very early in the morning or evening, when there is little activity.

Go to for more information on the responsibility and safe use of pesticides for grass pests and look for the “Louisiana Pest Management Guide”. See the “Louisiana Home Grass Series – Fallen Grass” for more information on web worms that fall in the grass.

Even after a severe epidemic and extensive damage, healthy and active grass can be completely cured. The rhizomes and stolons that spread on the lawn are rapidly recovering from their heavy root growth.


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