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Chinch bugs spotted

L: Chinch Adult R: Chinch Nymph (baby)

Our technicians are finding adult chinch bugs emerging from thatch as well as their young,  commonly called ‘nymphs’.  We started finding them earlier in June which is earlier than we normally see them appearing. The hot, dry weather is to blame.  Adult chinch bugs emerge, mate and lay eggs when the ‘bird’s foot trefoil’ weed is in flower.  The nymphs which cause the most damage hatch over several weeks.

Chinch bugs are arguably one of the most common insect pests on home lawns.  What the early appearance of adults means for this year’s chinch populations isn’t clear yet. It is the immature, reddish in colour,  chinch bug nymph that damages lawns, and an early start on adult activity may mean more young are born. On the other hand, if temperatures and rain return to seasonable levels, the red nymphs may suffer some degree of natural abatement.

Are you seeing fist-sized brown spots? Is most of the damage on the south-facing part of your lawn? Are the damaged spots growing together?

Chinch prefer hot, dry, south-facing slopes

Since we can’t predict how heavy chinch activity is going to be we count on you to be vigilant – watch your lawn for the signs and let us know when they appear, so that remedial steps can be taken.

Here is a photograph from last year of an infested lawn. This hill faces south, and you can see the characteristic damage of small patches that will eventually meld together. Chinch bugs suck the juices out of the grass blade and inject a venom toxic to the leaf blade, resulting in the death of the grass blade.  Roots are normally unharmed, but will quickly die if the lawn is not well watered.  Water heavily to help areas recover quickly!

they are very tiny and tend to scurry away fast

You can also look for the bugs themselves, but chinch bugs are tiny. Kyle’s thumb dwarfs them in this photo. The blue circle shows an adult, and the red circle shows a grass-damaging nymph, or immature chinch bug. They live right down at the base of the grass, and the only way to find them, really, is to get your nose right down into the grass. They scurry for cover quickly, so watch for movement.

Adults, adolescents and nymphs can all occur at the same time

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  • Coping with Covid Update: (updated 06/01/20)

    Hi Everyone, 

    I’m happy to share some good news during these crazy times. LawnSavers is servicing lawns in all areas as lawn care and pest control services that provide for lawn health are officially on the Provincial list of essential services due to the fact we can provide this service safely and with no personal contact!

    We do not expect any delay in our regular timing of applications (except from the brief wintry weather in May).  We put together an easy to read lawn care service timeline that you can use to know when to expect us for each scheduled service in your package. 

    I want to reassure you that in every decision we make around COVID-19, our number one priority remains the health and safety of our employees and customers.  Safety and honesty are our two most important core values.  We will continue to follow strict safety guidelines that ensure “zero touch”.  We will not let our guard down on exercising our safety protocols!

    Our office is open but with less staff in order to maintain safety protocols like social distancing.   Please note our phones are experiencing a high volume of calls and we know how much everyone hates being left on hold, so please leave us a message or email us at greatservice@lawnsavers.com  and we will get back to you in less than 24 hours.
    Please be patient with us, we will get back to you as fast as possible.
    You can also sign up for services on our website by clicking here.

    Thank you all for your understanding and patience during these challenging times. Our team works hard, so if you are met with our exceptional service from our technicians or office team members- please give them a thumbs up to make them smile or let me know through a quick email to feedback@lawnsavers.com

    We thank you for supporting our local, family-owned business of 30 years.
    We
     genuinely appreciate each and every one of you and promise that we will do our part to ensure our mutual safety and be on your lawn as soon as possible.  

    Thank you in advance,
    Kyle Tobin
    Chief Environmental Officer