The Dirty Details on Grubs n’ Beetles

Roses are red,

Violets are blue,

Grubs turn into Japanese beetles and will eat your plant roots too!

From Grubs to Japanese Beetles

Grubs/larvae are the infant stage of beetles. They live underground to eat roots, so it is very rare you will see grubs on the surface of your lawn. The larvae will only journey above ground after they have matured into adults and are ready to mate. Beetles inflict the most harm on your lawn and landscape during their larval stage as they consume the roots that plants need to get water and nutrients. As the larvae mature into May/June beetles and Japanese beetles, they wreak even more mayhem skeletonizing your already depleted trees, flowers and plants.

Six Facts about Grubs and Beetles You Need to Know

  1. In the younger larval stage, grubs live under the soil and feed on plant roots. Since the plant is being eaten from the bottom up, it may take time for you to notice grass that is yellow, thin, patchy, and wilting.

  2. If there is a large population of grubs, turf-grass will discolor, die, and roots will become loose in mid-late summer.

  3. Animals that prey on grubs may also harm your lawn as they will dig and destroy plants in search of the insects.

  4. Mature grubs – aka May/June and Japanese beetles – continue to damage your yard by feeding on grass and the leaves of other plants, targeting and devastating smaller plants with less established root system.

  5. Japanese beetles are extremely common in Wisconsin. Compared to the May/June beetle’s three-year life span, the Japanese beetle’s one-year lifespan allows them to proliferate profusely.

  6. Over the last five years, Japanese Beetles have become notorious for the extensive damage they cause in both the larval and adult stages. The adult beetles eat holes in many types of leaves, including ornamental plants such as roses, leaving behind a skeleton-like pattern.

Protect Your Lawn with Grub Treatment

Be Green Pro’s lawn care program helps prevent the damage white grubs may do to your lawn. We use a natural-based product that invites the larvae to journey above ground prior to maturity so they do not survive into adulthood. Treatment is weather-dependent as we want to make sure we are treating your lawn at the right time with the right amount of product the first time we come out. Getting your neighbors on board with treating for grubs is especially important. Larvae and beetles don’t recognize property lines so treatment is most effective in large blocks or neighborhoods.

Questions about grubs? We’ve got answers! Hop on over to our Facebook page or send us a message.


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