How do I know if I have Fall Armyworms?

How do I know if I have Fall Armyworms?

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When Fall Armyworms hatch, their favorite food is grass!

  • They particularly love dense, lush Bermuda and Fescue, but will eat other grasses too.
  • They also particularly LOVE newly laid sod.
  • Scout for them regularly.
  • When you see a sign of them, treat your lawn immediately because they can do terrible damage within 24 hours.
  • The egg sacs are not typically laid in the lawn, they're usually laid on the edge of the lawn - in the shrubs and weeds and even on buildings, signs, and walls.
  • There is no "over the counter" preventative treatment available to homeowners for Fall Armyworms in the egg or moth stages. However, there is an insecticide available to homeowners for treating when they're in the caterpillar stage. The caterpillar stage is when they do all their damage to lawns.
  • They're really caterpillars, not worms.
  • Running a "Soap Flush" on your lawn will let you know if you have Fall Armyworms in the caterpillar state. A soap flush is a mixture of 3 tablespoons of liquid dish soap with 1 gallon of water. Pour the mixture into a 3' x 3' area and watch the action. The soap will agitate the caterpillars' skin and they will come to the surface - you can see them and then you will know to treat for them immediately.

 

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