5 Summer Lawn Pests to Treat this Season
Long summer days and endless sunshine are on their way very soon! Around the Southern Botanical office, we’re getting excited about seeing Mother Nature at work in all her summertime glory on our clients’ properties. But we wouldn’t be doing our due diligence if we didn’t inform you about potentially harmful insects that could impact the health of your lawn this summer. That’s why our certified horticulturists and arborists are sharing the top 5 summer lawn pests you should look to treat this season below.
Why do you need to be concerned about summer lawn pests?
Each time the seasons change, the list of insect and pest threats to your landscape does, too. To keep your lawn looking its best throughout each season, we want you to be keeping an eye out for the following summer lawn pests. We also recommend reaching out to your landscape maintenance provider if you notice any unusual insects or damage on any of your plants.
5 Pests to Treat this Summer:
These extremely small relatives to the arachnid wreak havoc on the leaves of your plants and especially thrive in hot environments. Spider mites live in colonies on the underside of plant leaves where they feed off of the tissue of leaves, consuming the plant’s healthy fluids. As a result, the leaves of your plant(s) will begin to show tiny spots and eventually curl and drop off. To properly treat and eradicate spider mites from your property, we suggest consulting green industry experts, like our team of agronomists, to determine an effective treatment plan. This insect reproduces at extremely high rates in the hot, dry weather of a Texas summer, so it’s important to begin aggressive treatment to avoid further spread. In addition, spider mites typically do not respond to traditional chemical pesticides and alternative methods must be employed.
Scale insects are summer lawn pests that attach themselves to the branches, leaves, twigs etc. of host plants and feed off of the sap of the host. These pests will look like bumps along the surface of branches and twigs and can grow considerably before plant damage is detected. Similar to spider mites, the effects of scale can be detected via the appearance and health of a plant’s leaves. An infected host plant will have discolored leaves and could eventually die due to lack of treatment. Removal of infected branches or limbs is an effective preliminary treatment of scale insects. However, we also recommend opting for an organic yet effective insecticide to treating scale for a safe and sustainable treatment plan for your landscape. (Additional Information: Planet Natural)
Lace bugs are another extremely small but harmful lawn pest. If you have azaleas or any other flowering plants or shrubs on your property, please beware! These pests pierce plant leaves and feed off of the plant’s healthy fluids. You can identify the impact of lace bugs if you see the leaves of your plant(s) curling, with yellow or white stippling, turning brown or dropping off during an active growing season. When it comes to managing the effects of lace bugs, they typically respond well to most organic sprays. Consider hiring a professional to ensure thorough application of insecticide to completely eradicate these summer lawn pests.
Whiteflies are another breed of insect that feeds off of a host plant’s leaves, eventually compromising the plant’s health. They particularly attack any new plant growth leading to “stunted growth, leaf yellowing and reduced yields.” It’s important to note that these insects have become resistant to most synthetic pesticides and remain a threat all year long. Our team recommends consulting with a professional about alternative, organic approaches to treating/preventing these pests in each season. (Additional Information: Planet Natural)
Aphids are present in almost every garden or landscape. They can survive in most climates and must be treated quickly as they reproduce rapidly. Similar to the other pests mentioned in this post, aphids also feed off of plant leaves, particularly new growth. You can attempt to combat aphid on your own by spraying cold water on plant leaves or wiping leaves with a solution of water with a few drops of dish soap. It’s suggested to have your landscape maintenance provider develop a comprehensive pest treatment plan that ensures complete insect treatment and prevention each season. Your provider can also recommend beneficial plantings etc. that would reduce or eliminate pest and insect threats. (Additional Information: Almanac)
Now that you’re up to date on lawn pests to treat this summer, it’s time to also think about your trees! If you have oak trees on your property, don’t miss our post about the potentially deadly impacts Oak Wilt can have on your trees.