June's Lawn Pest of the Month: Crapemyrtle Aphids

When and where is this pest the most prevalent?

Aphids are prevalent on Crape Myrtles anytime they have leaves - which for our Gainesville lawns is from April through October. Typically, their remnants (the black sooty mold) is not seen until late summer, though. Aphids also attack other trees and shrubs in Gainesville yards as well.


How can I identify this as the problem in my lawn or landscape?

The quickest way to know if your Crape...

5 Most Common Gainesville Lawn Diseases

Turf diseases are not usually as common a threat to a Gainesville lawns as Turf pests and weeds, but they are still a concern in certain seasons. Occasionally an outbreak will occur after an extended period of heat and humidity but for the most part, a lawn will remain relatively disease free as long as it is irrigated properly.


Quick Tip: How can I get rid of ants in my Gainesville lawn?

In the past few weeks, I've had multiple clients ask about how to control the number of ants in their lawn. The combination of a fairly dry winter and the extremely dry spring this year has created outstanding conditions for ants to expand their population and build more nests. This is the reason why you may feel like you're seeing more ant beds this year than normal. For most people, the bite of an ant is just a painful nuisance. For children, pets, and people with allergies- they can be far more dangerous.

May’s Gainesville Lawn Pest: Chinch Bugs

When and where is this pest the most prevalent?

Chinch bugs are most prevalent from late spring to mid-fall and are typically found in St. Augustine lawns, although they are occasionally found in Zoysia yards as well. They love hot, dry soil and will almost always start damaging the grass near concrete. They like to start by a sidewalk or driveway and work their way out into your lawn.

How can I identify this as the problem in my lawn or landscape?

Chinch bugs can be tricky because they love to attack yards already weakened by drought stress, and their damage looks very similar to drought stress. Many people assume their lawn is just dry and just increase their irrigation settings when in reality they need a lawn insect control application to control the chinch bugs. 

This is especially important as we experience...

April's Lawn Pest: Drought Stress

Although the word 'pest' is typically used to describe an insect such as chinch bugs or webworms, the term is actually used to describe anything that is unwanted. (Perhaps you remember what you may have called your little sibling growing up?) In this case, a lawn certainly is not improved by being pestered with a lack of one of it's three basic needs)
When and where is drought stress the most prevalent?
Imagine filling a gallon bucket with water and setting it out in your yard. When you check your bucket a week later, you’re going to find it still has water, but you’ve lost an inch or so from evaporation.  That’s what happens to your lawn and landscape plants if the evaporation isn’t replaced by rain and/or irrigation. If you had the bucket of water in full sun, it would experience more evaporation than one in the shade....

March's Gainesville Lawn Pest: Magnolia Scale

Magnolia scale is extremely prevalent among all types of Magnolia trees - the Little Gem, Tiny Bear, Southern Magnolia, and even the Japanese Magnolia. There is no specific season they are more common, although they do go dormant in the winter. Having a Magnolia tree in your Gainesville lawn almost assures at some point an infestation of scale - however, a good Ornamental Pest Control plan will keep this from happening.

How to remove Bermuda from my St. Augustine lawn?

Are you frustrated with Bermuda taking over your lush St. Augustine lawn? Unfortunately, there are only two options to deal with it. Before I get into solutions, let me explain how Bermuda works. It is very invasive and spreads via seed (when mowed) and runner (underground root system). It is in the grass family, so any herbicide that kills it will also kill St. Augustine grass - which is why it creates such a hassle for Gainesville lawns.

Is Gainesville Lawn Aeration really important?

In order to achieve and maintain a beautiful Gainesville lawn, you should employ the basics first - mowing at the proper height, irrigation, and protecting it with a lawn fertilization program. It is also important to ensure that nutrients can reach the soil beneath your grass. Aeration can be an extremely vital element to a healthy lawn because it allows fertilization, air, and water to penetrate the top layer of thatch and soil in your yard.

February's Gainesville Lawn Pest: Large Patch Fungus

This lawn disease can affect all turf - but primarily is found in St. Augustine and Zoysia lawns. In our North Central Florida market, it is especially rampant in early spring and late fall. It typically starts off as small patches that turn yellow and then brown, in a noticeably round pattern. Patches can expand to several feet in diameter as the disease grows, and it is not uncommon to see green healthy turf in the center of the circle.

Gainesville Lawn Pest of the Month: Large Patch Fungus

In your Gainesville lawn as fall comes into town, your grass may begin showing brown circular spots that seem to be struggling. This is typically large patch disease, commonly called brown patch fungus - especially in St. Augustine and Zoysia lawns. 

This turf disease is active when nighttime temperatures range from 60-75 degrees and daytime temperatures don’t exceed 85-90 degrees. These temperatures are usually seen in the Spring and Fall. Like other fungi, Large Patch also requires adequate moisture in its environment to thrive, so be careful with your Gainesville irrigation settings.

This disease affects the blades of the grass and typically will not kill the entire grass plant. It begins as small patches that discolor, yellow then brown, as the grass blades die. An interesting display of Large Patch fungus in a lawn is the “donut effect” it may create. In...