Sod webworms are a lawn pest which eats grass and lives in the turf. Adults don’t eat grass but they reproduce. And females can lay a lot of eggs which can lead to a lot of larvae which can lead to a lot of damage.
SOD WEBWORM DAMAGE
The adult form is a moth which likes to live it’s life in the turf. Once impregnated, females will move throughout the yard and as she does, eggs will fall over the lawn and grass. During the course of summer these eggs hatch out small caterpillar like worms that feed on the blades of most any turf grass found in the United States. They’ll munch and eat for a month or two and then spend another month pupating into an adult stage.
SOD WEBWORM BIOLOGY
Once pupae develop and hatch to their adult moth phase, males and females mate and females start laying eggs which completes the cycle. In the south, webworms can generate 3 generations a year. Up north there is usually 1-2 cycles per season.
At the end of the summer, the feeding, young caterpillars will go dormant in their pupae stage and hibernate during the winter. They do this down in the soil and there they’ll stay till the following spring. If left untreated, small populations will grow annually until their impact will be very noticeable one season. In the spring when they first emerge, it’s hard to see them but late summer the damage they do will become very noticeable as populations peak.
SOD WEBWORM CONTROL
Sod webworms can be controlled using a combination of granules and liquid sprays.
SOD WEBWORM CONTROL GRANULES
BIFEN GRANULES should be applied first by spreading them out over the turf at the rate of 25 lbs for every 20,000 sq/ft. Treatments should be made every 2 months during the warm season with at least 4 treatments per year. The granules are slow release and will filter down into the ground a few inches where they’ll control larvae as they hatch. These same granules will also get late season caterpillars making their way into the soil to hibernate effectively stopping the cycle.
SOD WEBWORM CONTROL SPRAY
Liquid treatments should continue every two weeks if you see new damage following the initial treatment or if you see live worms moving in the grass. The Cyonara RTS version comes packaged in a hose end sprayer so all you need to do is attach it to your garden hose and start using it. The concentrated version will require a good HOSE END SPRAYER for the treatment but will prove more economical if you have a large area to treat over the course of a season.
Cyonara is active on a wide range of turf pests, is just about odorless and very safe to use in yards where people or pets are active. When treatments are timed properly, you should be able to eliminate the average infestation with just 1-2 applications of both the granules and the liquids.
In most cases, treatments should be done for two years to insure you’ve knocked them out for good. Since the pupae stage cannot be killed, sod webworms can rebound if you quit treating. Stick to a scheduled routine for two growing seasons and you’ll knock them out of your turf for good.