Chinch Bug Typical Damage
What are Chinch Bugs?
Chinch Bugs are a very small chewing insects with a distinctive hour glass marking on its back. When the insect is smashed it has a very distinctive odor. It that feeds at the crown of the grass plant (Base). It is not much bigger than the tip of pen, so diagnosis's is often difficult. This insect is most prevalent during hot dry periods and favors those areas in full sun. Favorite locations tend to along driveways and walks, hillsides or any other area that is hot. When looking for Chinch bugs one must look at the base of the grass plant for Frass (Poo) that looks like saw dust, as well as a chewed up crown area. The greener the frass the more recent the damage, and the better chance one will see the chinch bug.
What Can I do?
Water your lawn on a regular Basis. Chinch bugs do the majority of their damage during hot dry periods, and do not do nearly as well in well irrigated lawns. This is most likely due to the fact the the fungi and other good insects, that naturally control this insect like more moderate conditions. So once again watering the lawn on a regular basis will help it recover. For those areas seriously damaged - reseeding later in the year will most likely be required. Call Earth Care for help with this repair if it is necessary!
It is important that control measures are taken only if one finds Chinch bug. Insect Controls do not last very long, and putting it down as a preventative rarely works. (See Note Below)
Chemical Controls - currently there are materials at you local garden center that will control this insect.
Non Chemical - Spraying lawn area with soapy water has proven somewhat effective at controlling this insect.
What can EARTH CARE do?
Earth Care is licensed for this work call us at 630-231-8940. or use the contact page for a quote.
Insect Controls as a rule are non-selective. This means that they kill the good guys with the bad. Therefore an insect control should only be used if the lawn is experiencing a significant amount of damage. Usage of insect controls on an annual basis as a preventative is not recommended by Earth Care. Over time the bad guys will develop a resistance to the product used, making control of a future problem that more difficult if not impossible. A lawn on a steady diet of insect control will become dependent on it just like a drug addict! …because the good guys always recover at a slower pace.