6 Lawn Pests That Wreak Havoc On Your Yard - Backyard Boss
We are reader supported. External links may earn us a commission.

6 Lawn Pests That Wreak Havoc On Your Yard

No matter how beautiful your garden is, people will always judge it based on how your lawn looks. However, every gardener knows how difficult it is to make it grow thick, healthy, and green due to many problems that constantly affect it. Even though some of them do not need fixing, many factors can weaken your lawn, such as droughts, diseases, mushrooms, or weeds. Yet, among all these issues, there is nothing more dreadful as lawn pests!

These annoying creatures can easily turn your grass brown, lowering its immunity and making it look awful. It’s not that simple to fight them since some are too small to spot. To help you with that, we created this list of the most common lawn pests that wreak havoc on your yard, so you can recognize your enemy and know how to get rid of it in no time!


White lawn grub in soil with grass. Lawncare, insect and pest control concept.
Image credit: J.J. Gouin via Shutterstock

It is quite simple to recognize grubs due to their c-shaped white bodies and brown heads. They are about one inch long, and some of them have legs. They can be very dangerous since they create brown spots on your grass that can easily spread all over your lawn. It comes to this during their larval stage when they feed on grass roots, killing patches of your lawn. 

There are a few methods to treat grubs. One of the most efficient ones is pouring hot water with dissolved soap onto the area where they are located. After just 10 minutes, they should start creeping out on the surface. When it happens, apply an insecticide that contains a common active ingredient called Chlorantraniliprole for long-term results. 

Mole Crickets

Gryllotalpa gryllotalpa On the palm of a person. Pest of garden plantations
Image credit: Inga Gedrovicha via Shutterstock

Once mole crickets appear in your yard, you won’t be able not to realize it. It’s very simple to recognize them due to their long brown body that can grow up to two inches long, big heads with two protruding antennas, six legs, and a pair of wings. They also possess front claws, which they use to dig tunnels, interfering with the proper growth of your lawn. Plus, they feed on the leaves and roots, which causes the grass to turn brown.

If you want to remove them from your lawn, introduce some nematodes (little worms) and let them do the work spreading nutrients throughout your property. Alternatively, you can use insecticide containing the common active ingredient Abamectin.

Sod Webworms

A Bluegrass Webworm Moth is resting on a green leaf. Taylor Creek Park, Toronto, Ontario, Canada.
Image credit: Paul Reeves Photography via Shutterstock

Sod Webworms are larvas of closed-wing moths. You can identify them by their long brown body marked with plenty of dark spots. Adults moths lay their eggs on lawns, and soon after, these annoying caterpillars start feeding on the grass, causing dead brown patches all over the lawn. 

To successfully fight against them, add some parasitic nematodes to your yard, such as Steinerema. However, if you want to use some insecticide, choose the one with the common active ingredient called Chlorantraniliprole as mentioned before.

Army Worms

Army Worms Scurry on Sidewalk
Image credits: Mccallk69 via Canva

Army Worms got their name from being able to overrun your lawn in enormous groups and eventually take it over. They are bigger than Sod Webworms and are the larvae of Armyworm Moths. Their color can differ from green to brown or even black. They invade your lawn in such big quantities due to the adult moth’s ability to lay up to 500 eggs daily. 

They are difficult to combat since they spend days inside the soil and only go out to the surface at night to feed on your grass. If you want to get rid of them naturally, introduce nematodes or Bacillus Thuringiensis to your lawn. However, if they won’t help, reach for an insecticide. 


Ant action standing.Ant bridge unity team,Concept team work together
Image credit: frank60 via Shutterstock

You might be surprised that ants are on this list because they look very harmless and are so common in every garden. Even though ants add organic substances to soil and aerate it by tunneling under your lawn, their presence can be more problematic than you think. By constantly tunneling the soil, they can eventually dry it out your turfgrass roots, which contributes to the formation of mounds of excavated dirt. Later on, mowing your lawn can be a real nightmare because of them! 

The good news is that you can easily get rid of them from your lawn by pouring boiling water onto their nests. You can also use an insecticide containing the common active ingredient Fipronil.


Cut worm eating a lettuce leaf
Image credit: phonecat via Shutterstock

You know you are dealing with a Cutworm if you see a caterpillar-like pest with long yellow, brown, green, or grey body with stripes that can be as long as two inches. It got its name because it can cut down and kill sprouting plants and turfgrass. Just like Army Worms, they hide during the day in the soil and go out after dark to consume your grass. 

Once you spot them, remove them from your lawn with your hands and put them in soapy water. However, make sure to wear garden gloves! You can also use an insecticide with the common active ingredient chlorantraniliprole.

Insects Be Gone!

Since the lawn is the pearl in the crown of every garden, it’s crucial to make everything you can to make it look spectacular! One problem that can occur and cause damage are lawn pests that feed on it and consequently destroy your progress. 

Before you start fighting against them, know which specific pests you are dealing with. With this list of the six most common lawn pests, you will not only be able to recognize your enemy but also know how to fight it! 

Share with us if you find this article helpful, and as always, please share!