What is Lawn Grub?

Lawn grub, also known as lawn caterpillars or sod webworms, are the larvae of various species of moths. These pests can cause significant damage to lawns by feeding on the grass blades and roots, resulting in brown patches and thinning of the turf. Understanding the life cycle, identification, and control methods for lawn grubs is essential for maintaining a healthy and lush lawn.

Life Cycle of Lawn Grubs

Lawn grubs go through a complete metamorphosis, which includes four distinct stages: egg, larva, pupa, and adult. The adult moths lay their eggs in the soil during the spring or early summer. These eggs hatch into small larvae, which are the lawn grubs. The larvae then feed on the grass roots and blades, causing damage to the lawn. After a few weeks of feeding, the larvae enter the pupal stage, where they transform into adult moths. The adult moths emerge from the soil and mate, starting the life cycle all over again.

Identification of Lawn Grubs

Identifying lawn grubs can be challenging, as they are often hidden beneath the surface of the soil. However, there are a few signs that can indicate their presence. One of the most noticeable signs is the appearance of brown patches in the lawn, which may be accompanied by thinning or wilting grass. Another clue is the presence of small holes in the turf, which are created by the larvae as they feed on the grass roots. Additionally, if you notice an increase in bird activity in your lawn, it could be a sign that they are feeding on the lawn grubs.

Damage Caused by Lawn Grubs

Lawn grubs can cause significant damage to lawns if left untreated. As they feed on the grass blades and roots, they weaken the turf, leading to brown patches and thinning of the grass. This can make the lawn more susceptible to other pests, diseases, and environmental stressors. In severe cases, the damage caused by lawn grubs can result in the death of the grass, requiring costly reseeding or sod replacement.

Prevention of Lawn Grubs

Preventing lawn grubs is the best approach to avoid damage to your lawn. One of the most effective prevention methods is to maintain a healthy and well-maintained lawn. This includes regular mowing, proper watering, and fertilization. A healthy lawn is more resistant to pest infestations, including lawn grubs. Additionally, avoiding overwatering and excessive use of nitrogen-based fertilizers can help reduce the attractiveness of your lawn to moths looking for a place to lay their eggs.

Control Methods for Lawn Grubs

If you already have a lawn grub infestation, there are several control methods that can help eliminate these pests. One option is to use biological controls, such as nematodes or bacteria, which specifically target lawn grubs. These natural predators can be applied to the affected areas and will feed on the larvae, reducing their population. Another option is to use chemical insecticides, which can be effective in killing lawn grubs. However, it is important to follow the instructions carefully and use these products responsibly to minimize the impact on the environment.

Integrated Pest Management for Lawn Grubs

Integrated Pest Management (IPM) is a holistic approach to pest control that aims to minimize the use of chemical pesticides and promote environmentally friendly practices. When it comes to lawn grubs, IPM involves a combination of prevention, monitoring, and control methods. By implementing cultural practices, such as proper lawn maintenance and regular inspections, you can reduce the risk of lawn grub infestations. If an infestation occurs, IPM encourages the use of biological controls and targeted insecticides as a last resort.

Common Mistakes in Dealing with Lawn Grubs

When dealing with lawn grubs, there are a few common mistakes that homeowners make. One of the most common mistakes is waiting too long to take action. By the time the damage is visible, the infestation may already be severe, making it more challenging to control. Another mistake is using excessive amounts of insecticides without considering the potential harm to beneficial insects and the environment. It is important to follow the recommended guidelines and use insecticides as a targeted treatment rather than a preventive measure.

Professional Lawn Grub Control Services

In some cases, DIY methods may not be sufficient to control a lawn grub infestation. If you are facing a severe infestation or have tried multiple control methods without success, it may be time to seek professional help. Professional lawn care companies have the expertise and specialized equipment to effectively eliminate lawn grubs and restore the health of your lawn. They can assess the extent of the infestation, recommend the most appropriate control methods, and provide ongoing maintenance to prevent future infestations.


In conclusion, lawn grubs can cause significant damage to lawns if left untreated. Understanding their life cycle, identifying their presence, and implementing preventive and control measures are essential for maintaining a healthy and lush lawn. By following proper lawn maintenance practices and seeking professional help when necessary, you can effectively manage lawn grub infestations and enjoy a beautiful and thriving lawn.