Managing Southern Chinch Bug in Warm Season Turfgrasses

Figure 1. Southern chinch bug, Blissus insularis Barber. From left to right: nymph, short-wing, and long-wing adults

Southern chinch bug, Blissus insularis Barber, is the most damaging insect pest of St. Augustinegrass in the United States. St. Augustinegrass is the most common turfgrass used in Florida. The ubiquity of this single turfgrass species makes southern chinch bug an economically important pest in the state. In fact, chinch bugs cost Florida homeowners and professionals millions of dollars every year. This 7-page fact sheet written by Eileen A. Buss, Brianna M. Whitman, and Adam G. Dale and published by the UF/IFAS Department of Entomology and Nematology describes the biology of the pest and the damage it causes and lists ways to scout and monitor for chinch bugs and some strategies for control of the pest.

Impervious Surface Thresholds and the Pace to Plant Technique for Planting Urban Red Maple Trees

A foundation of integrated pest management (IPM) in urban landscapes is to put the right plant in the right place. This preventive tactic can reduce plant stress, pest infestations, and subsequent pesticide applications. Many urban tree species have more insect and mite pests in urban landscapes than in surrounding natural areas. This is due in part to stress created by impervious surfaces like roads and sidewalks that make the air hot and the soil dry. For red maples (Acer rubrum), more impervious surface area adds stress and worsens tree condition. This 4-page publication written by Adam G. Dale, Steven D. Frank, Elsa Youngsteadt, Barbara Fair, Julieta Sherk, and Michael Just and published by the UF/IFAS Department of Entomology and Nematology focuses on selecting red maple planting sites that will help reduce tree stress and scale insect pests by maximizing surfaces permeable to water.

New Featured Creatures for October 2016

Insect Pest Management on Turfgrass

Granulate cutworm larvae.
Turfgrass is grown in many environments and for different uses, including home lawns, parks, athletic fields, cemeteries, golf courses, sod farms, pastures, and right-of-ways. The intensity of turfgrass insect management largely depends on the turf species, variety, and its intended use. This eighteen-page fact sheet describes how to manage a variety of insect pests including armyworms, bermudagrass mite, cutworms, fire ants, ground pearls, hunting billbug, mole crickets, scales/mealybugs, southern chinch bug, twolined spittlebugs, tropical sod webworm, and white grubs. Written by Eileen A. Buss and Adam G. Dale, and published by the Entomology and Nematology Department.

Landscape Integrated Pest Management

Figure 3. Tussock moth caterpillar feeding on an oak leaf. Fras droppings are shown beneath the caterpillar, indicating the type of pest. Credits: A.G. Dale

Every landscape manager has a pest management toolbox, which contains tools that represent different management strategies. People can be quick to use pesticides, but an integrated approach using multiple tools can be much safer, have longer lasting beneficial effects, and in some cases cut costs. This 5-page fact sheet will help Extension agents and specialists, lawn and landscape managers, Florida Master Gardeners, and homeowners develop long-term sustainable pest management programs using an Integrated Pest Management (IPM) framework. Written by Adam G. Dale and published by the Department of Entomology and Nematology.