Milky Spore is a bacteria which occurs naturally in a dormant state in the soil. If the population of these in the soil is high
enough, the spores are useful in controlling the larvae, or grubs, of the Japanese Beetle. These grubs are active in the soil of
most lawns during the spring and again in late summer-fall. They are hungry and feed on tender roots. If enough grubs are
present, the effect of this feeding on a lawn’s roots becomes obvious, and brown areas begin showing up by summertime.
There are chemical means of controlling grubs, but “innoculating” a grassy area with Milky Spore is a natural method and will
last many years once the bacteria is properly introduced into the soil.
How does it work?
As the grubs are munching away on grass roots, they also ingest the bacteria spores. These spores which were dormant in the
soil become active bacteria inside the grub. The grub dies from this infection and the bacteria make many more spores which
are released back into the soil.
How is Milky Spore applied to the lawn?
Milky Spore is available in a granular product that can be applied with a drop spreader. A 20 lb bag of the product will treat
7000 sq ft.
When should I do it?
Three times a year. Spring, summer, and fall for two years. Anytime the ground is not frozen.
Why so many times?
The spores will only kill grubs if enough of them are eaten. It takes repeated applications over time to reach a concentration
which is lethal to the grubs and also self sustaining in the soil.
If I do this program with Milky Spore, then I won’t be bothered any more with Japanese Beetles. Right?
If whole neighborhoods did it, perhaps that would be the case. Unfortunately, Japanese Beetles are pretty mobile as adults and
are still likely to fly in from surrounding areas for a feast in any yard. These adult beetles are unaffected by the presence of
Milky Spore in the soil and they will still take delight in eating away at rose blossoms and tree leaves. Keep a spray handy in
case such an attack occurs.
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