Killing Moles and Other Pest Control Myths

Mole tunneling through turf grass

The ground is barely thawed out and you’ve already got lawn damage from moles tunneling under the turf. Anxious to be on top of the lawn care this year, you run out to the home improvement store and there, on a pallet by the door, is your answer – buy a bag of Grub-Ex and stop the moles from ruining your grass!

This is partially true. The best approach to preventing mole damage in the lawn is not to kill them – it is to remove their food source, which are grubs. However, grub control only works in the period of time when they are actively feeding – from late May to mid-June.

Applying grub control too early accomplishes two things: it gives you exercise and it moves the excess grub control inventory from the shelf at the home improvement store. But it doesn’t stop the moles from damaging your lawn.

All pests and diseases operate according to a biological clock. Successful pest-control strategies will only work effectively when considering the lifecycle of that insect or disease. With grubs, the soil temperatures play a big part in their feeding habits. There is approximately a 30-day window to knock them down before they emerge. Timing of controls is critical for all of the landscape pests we manage: ticks and mosquitoes, lawn fungus, or tree and shrub diseases. In some cases – like tree-boring insects – you only have a season or two to eradicate the pest – or the tree will die.

Here are some other silly pest-control myths:

Pheromone Traps – if you buy a bag-a-bug trap, give it to your neighbor who lives half a mile away. Don’t buy products that bring bugs into your yard!

Ants are killing your trees. Ants are actually good for trees! However, if you have ants in a large tree, it means that there is decay present in that tree and that tree may be a hazard. Ants tunnel out wet, decaying wood and aerate it – slowing down the rate of decay.

Sonic Mole Repellers. There is no empirical evidence that proves sonic devices drive away moles or other rodents. Despite FTC warnings, manufacturers continue to sell these devices. Remove the food source with a consistent, well-timed grub control program.

Milky spore disease controls grubs. While this may be true in southern climates, this biological grub control does not work well in the Northeast because the season is too short for the disease to become established.

Do you have a question about your yard? Do you have a lawn problem you can’t seem to beat on your own? Call our turf care division today for a free consultation!

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