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15 May Choosing the Right Beneficial Nematodes For Your Lawn
Beneficial nematodes are a natural and effective way to control pests in lawns and gardens. These microscopic, worm-like organisms are safe for humans, pets, and the environment, making them an ideal alternative to chemical pesticides. However, not all nematode species are created equal. Below, we will discuss how to choose the right beneficial nematodes for your lawn or garden:
Consider the Target Pest
The first step in choosing the right beneficial nematodes is to identify the target pest. Different species of nematodes are effective against different pests. For example, Steinernema feltiae is effective against fungus gnats and thrips, while Heterorhabditis bacteriophora is effective against grubs and other soil-dwelling insects.
It’s important to note that some pests may require multiple applications of beneficial nematodes over time to effectively control their population. Researchers recommend applying nematodes at least twice per year for best results.
Choose the Right Nematode Species
Once you have identified the target pest, it’s time to choose the right nematode species. As mentioned earlier, different species of nematodes are effective against different pests. Some common species include:
● Steinernema carpocapsae: Effective against flea larvae, caterpillars, cutworms, armyworms, sod webworms
● Heterorhabditis bacteriophora: Effective against grubs (Japanese beetle larvae), root weevils
● Steinernema feltiae: Effective against fungus gnats, thrips
It’s important to choose a nematode species that is most effective against your target pest. Using a general-purpose mix of nematode species may not be as effective as targeting specific pests with specific species.
Moist Soil is Key
Nematodes thrive in moist soil, so it’s important to water your lawn or garden before and after applying them. This will help the nematodes move through the soil and infect their target pests. It’s also important to avoid watering your lawn or garden during the heat of the day, as this can cause the nematodes to dry out and die.
Avoid Harm to Other Animals and Bacteria
Beneficial nematodes work by infecting and killing harmful pests, like masked chafer larvae, with infective juveniles, but they do not harm other animals or bacteria in the soil. This makes them a safe and effective alternative to chemical pesticides.
Choose a Reputable Source
When purchasing beneficial nematodes, it’s important to choose a reputable source like The Environmental Factor. Buying from a reliable source ensures that you are getting high-quality nematodes that are free from contaminants or other issues that could reduce their effectiveness.
Cost is also an important consideration when choosing beneficial nematodes. While some retailers like Costco may offer lower prices, it’s important to ensure that you are getting a high-quality product at an affordable cost.
Timing is Everything: When to Apply Nematodes for Lawn Grub Control
Now that you have a better understanding of nematodes for lawn grub control, it’s time to discuss the importance of timing when applying them. Applying nematodes at the right time is crucial to ensure their effectiveness and maximize their benefits.
The ideal times to apply nematodes for lawn grub control is late spring for the first application, and during the late summer into fall, typically between August and October, for the second application. This timeframe allows enough time for the nematodes to establish themselves in your soil before winter arrives. It also ensures that they are present in your soil when grubs start feeding on grass roots in the spring.
It’s important to note that applying nematodes too early or too late can result in reduced efficacy. If applied too early, the nematodes may not be able to survive long enough to attack grubs when they emerge in the spring. On the other hand, if applied too late, grubs may have already caused significant damage to your lawn.
To determine the right time for application, monitor your lawn for signs of grub activity. One way to do this is by looking out for brown patches on your grass, which could indicate grub infestation. You can also perform a simple tug test by grabbing a handful of grass and pulling gently. If it comes up easily like a carpet, it could be an indication of root damage caused by grubs.
Once you’ve confirmed that there are grubs present in your lawn, wait a few weeks before applying nematodes. This allows them enough time to grow and multiply before being introduced into your soil. When applying nematodes, make sure you follow the instructions carefully and apply them evenly across your lawn using a sprayer or watering can. Watering immediately after application helps ensure that they penetrate deep into your soil where grubs are located.
It’s important to remember that even with proper timing and application, nematodes may not eliminate all grubs in your lawn. However, they can significantly reduce their population and prevent further damage to your grass.
If you need to control your lawn grub infestation, The Environmental Factor has the product for you! With our Nema Globe Grub Busters Lawn Control, you can be sure to eliminate grubs at the source before the replication process begins. They can be easily applied to your lawn with a sprayer or watering can. With regular application, nematodes can help keep your lawn healthy and free from harmful pests. So, if you are looking for an effective and environmentally friendly way to control grubs and other pests in your lawn, consider using nematodes as a natural alternative to chemical pesticides. Your grass will thank you! For more environmentally friendly products, click: https://www.environmentalfactor.com/shop/