Aphids in Turf

What is it?

Aphids, otherwise known as Greenflies, are a minute green insect that can be a real nuisance to your garden in large numbers. If you suspect that you may have aphids in your turf, to be sure, they are distinguishable by the two cylindrical tubes on the hind end of their bodies. Generally speaking, small numbers may not do much damage, however, large populations can cause discoloured, mouldy leaves. How? This is due to aphids secreting honeydew, a sticky substance that when left unconsumed will discolour leaves and create mouldy patches.

What to look out for

  • Visible infestation of minute green insects on leaves.
  • Patches of discoloured leaves.
  • Stunted growth of plants.
  • Yellow and brown patches on the lawn. 
  • Sticky leaves (due to the unconsumed honeydew).

When does it occur?

Aphids are most active between spring and late summer.

Treating and Preventing

  • Aphids are quite unlucky due to the number of insects that feed off them. These include Ladybirds, Ants and Wasps. 
  • As Aphid populations can multiply rapidly, the insects that feed on them are effective up to a point. However, the populations can become out of control which may then warrant chemical controls. 
  • Chemical controls are available and come in the form of sprays.
  • Spay the pesticide on small areas of the affected leaves, making sure to also spray the underside of leaves.
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