Army worm (or sod web worm) can be awfully damaging to your lawn and unfortunately a healthy lawn is the type they like best. If you have a patch of lawn that is thinner or shorter than the rest then you could have army worm.
Army worms are lawn/leaf eating caterpillars which are green, black or brownish-green and often striped. They hatch after only 5-7 days and get straight to work demolishing your lawn.
Symptoms of Army Worm
- Brown or straw-like patches on the lawn
- The leaves on the grass runners are disappearing
- The grass is loose and can easily be pulled away from the roots
- Moths and/or wasp-like insects flying over the lawn
- It’s Summer or Autumn – their favourite time of the year to infest
Ridding your lawn of Army Worm
Apply a broad-spectrum insecticide like Lawn Lovers Grub Guard or Sir Walter Pest Control. This type of product is less toxic to birds and other animals, will prevent damage to the lawn plants, and can be applied as soon as the moths appear hovering over the lawn.
Getting rid of the Army Worm this season won’t ensure that they won’t come back. Unfortunately, as long as you have healthy lawn you run the risk that Army Worm will find your lawn appetising. Keep an eye out for the symptoms and treat as soon as possible. To restore the lawn’s health after an infestation, apply a lawn fertiliser to promote new leaf growth.