One of the most common challenges we face when it comes to lawn care is grub infestations.
Grubs are essentially baby insects, they live underground and munch on the roots of our grass, which results in those annoying brown, patchy areas in the lawn. If left untreated they can cause extensive damage to your lawn.
It is important to know what signs to look out for to establish whether you have a grub infestation so you can treat your lawn correctly and get rid of the little critters.
In this article we will outline the noticeable signs that grubs are present in your lawn and it will also explain the best way to tackle grubs in your lawn. It will also cover how to overseed patches on your lawn from grub damage.
6 Key Signs Of Lawn Grubs
Knowing a few telltale signs can help you quickly identify whether you have grubs present in your lawn. Autumn is the peak feeding season for grubs so it is common to have the below problems with your lawn at this time of year.
Brown Patchy Areas
If you notice oddly discolored patches on your lawn, grubs might be the culprits. They feast on grassroots, causing these unsightly brown spots. Grub-infested turf peels up easily from the soil because its roots have been depleted.
Healthy grass should have a strong root system. If you can effortlessly lift chunks of your grass like it’s a loose carpet, it’s a clear sign of grub-induced root damage.
If you notice that your lawn feels spongey and is squishy when walking on it, this could be a telltale sign you have grubs in your lawn. Grubs feast on roots, making the soil soft and springy.
Grubs are also a favorite treat for nocturnal visitors like badgers, foxes and moles. They might dig up your lawn in search of these juicy grubs, leading to holes and disrupted grass.
Increased Weed Growth
If you have a sudden influx of weeds in your lawn, it could be a sign of a grub problem. Grubs weaken the grass roots, making it easier for weeds to take over your lawn. Weeds tend to thrive in areas where there is weakened grass.
Adult Grub Sightings
Keep an eye out for adult grubs and cranefly. These adult beetles are signs that grubs are lurking in your soil. They lay eggs in the soil, and those eggs hatch into grubs.
Increased Bird Activity
Birds such as crows, starlings, and robins consider grubs a delicacy. A sudden influx of these birds in your garden could be a sign you have a grub infestation in your lawn. Just as much as grubs love feeding on your lawn, birds love feasting on lawn grubs.
Best Way To Get Rid Of Grubs In Your Lawn
Now you have identified that you have grubs in your lawn, dig up a small area of your lawn and examine for white C shaped grubs within the soil. If you find more than five grubs per square foot, it’s safe to say you have a grub infestation.
Chafer grubs and leather jackets are the most common lawn grubs. Below we will discuss the best way to get rid of these grubs so you can restore your lawn.
Biological Control: Nematodes
One of the most effective ways to get rid of lawn grubs is to use a product called nematodes. You can buy pathogenic nematodes which kill the larvae in the grubs by infecting them with a fatal bacterial disease. This disease stops the pest from feeding and quickly kills them.
These microscopic heroes are your allies in the battle against grubs. You can purchase them from a garden center or online. Follow the instructions to release them into your lawn; they’ll seek out and eliminate those grubs.
Encourage Natural Predators
Encouraging Natural Predators can be a good way to stop grubs from feasting on your lawn. Birds and toads are natural enemies of grubs.
Create a welcoming environment for them in your garden by setting up bird feeders and birdbaths.
If the infestation isn’t severe, you can handpick / dig the grubs (wear gloves!) and drop them into a bucket of soapy water to say farewell.
Preventing Grubs In Your Lawn
Maintaining a healthy lawn is your best defense. Regularly aerate your soil, mow your grass at the right height, and water deeply but less frequently to promote strong root growth. Healthy grass is less susceptible to grub damage.
Feeding your lawn with our dark green autumn fertiliser is beneficial to maintaining a healthy lawn as it provides your lawn with the essential nutrients for it to thrive. By feeding your lawn with our fertiliser it is more likely to fight of diseases and will be less susceptible to grub damage.
September is a great month to fertilise your lawn. Feeding your lawn with a good fertiliser can also help aid its recovery from summer use and prepare it for the cold and harsh winter conditions.
We also do a green machine liquid fertiliser which is compatible with the dark green autumn fertiliser. This product contains iron sulphate and nitrogeon which will turn your lawn a vibrant green.
Overseeding Patches From Grub Damage
If grubs have wreaked havoc on your lawn, consider overseeding the affected areas to restore the health and density of your lawn.
Here’s a brief summary of the overseeding process:
- Prepare your lawn: Begin by cutting your lawn to a shorter length. This helps the grass seed make better contact with the soil. Remove any thatch or debris from the surface by raking or scarifying. This creates an ideal environment for the new grass seed to grow.
- Apply grass seed: Spread the grass seed evenly across your lawn. You can use a broadcast spreader or do it by hand. Make sure to cover any thin or bare spots. Treading or rolling down the seeds will help press them into the soil for better germination. Alternatively, you can lightly cover the seeds with compost or topsoil.
- Water and maintain: After seeding, water the area thoroughly to activate the seeds. Keep the soil consistently moist but avoid overwatering. Water lightly multiple times a day until germination occurs. Once the grass seedlings start to establish, gradually reduce the watering frequency.
By following these steps of lawn overseeding, you can promote a healthier and thicker lawn.
For more information read our guide on how to overseed your lawn.
We offer a diverse selection of premium grass seed blends that are designed to help you create a beautiful and thriving lawn.
Whether you desire a golf-course quality green or a resilient landscape, our range of varieties and customized blends have got you covered.
If you don’t know where to start use our guide on how to choose the right grass seed for your lawn or check out our 2 best selling lawn mixes linked above.