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40+ Years of St. Louis Lawn Insect Control Experience

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Why Should You Choose Pure Lawn Pest and Insect Control?

At Pure Lawn, our lawn pest control services have eliminated insects, specifically in the St. Louis region, for over 40 years. We offer custom packages and customized lawn care strategies to maximize your insect control while keeping damage to your lawn minimal. We offer a wide variety of services, including and not limited to free soft soil treatments, fungicide application, and aeration and overseeding – something not offered by any of our competitors.  

A healthy lawn against an unhealthy one showing the signs of Lawn pest
A lawn struggling with insect infestation with brown spots that could benefit from Lawn pest control services

How Do I Know If My Lawn Needs Insect or Pest Control?

Many homeowners (and business owners) come to us confused as to why their lawn is dying. They explain that their lawn is brown and crispy, but they’re watering regularly, to the point of overwatering, but it’s still brown, and they don’t know what to do. 

For most homeowners, it is very easy to attribute the problem to the soil or to watering and assume the problem will fix itself over time, but it will not. Very rarely do home and business owners know it is an insect problem, as all they can see are the common symptoms. 

Some common symptoms that can indicate the need for lawn insect control are brown grass (often coming in patches), finger-length stripes of dead grass across the lawn that form long stripes, mounds, burrows, chewed blades of grass, holes in the ground, and insect sightings. 

If you see one or more of these signs, it’s likely that you have an insect problem in that our lawn pest control services can address.

Complete Communication

We at Pure Lawn have a full communication approach when it comes to our customers. Once we’ve serviced your lawn and gotten the insect problem under control, we leave instructions for the homeowner on how to take care of their lawn now that the insects are under control. 

We also tell you how to water the lawn for the seasons and weather, how to mow to promote healthy grass growth and anything other problems we notice so they are fully aware of what is happening on their property. For example, we often have to let clients know that they have weeds that need to be treated.

We are always on the lookout for problems, unlike big national companies, resulting in a more thorough job and higher satisfaction. 

A lawn with a bare patch because of insects

Love Your Lawn Again!

An illustration of grub worms living in soil below a lawn.

Grub Worms

One of the most common lawn insects are Grub Worms, and they’re the easiest insect to identify due to most people seeing them in their childhood. They are the larvae of scarab beetles and appear most often in late spring, summer, and earlier fall. They are C-shaped, with a white body and a brown head shaped like a capsule. The raster (the tip of the abdomen) is often commonly brown, and true grub worms have a ‘zipper’ of hairs on the tip of the raster). 

The damage they can cause can be patches of lawn turning yellow or brown and spongy underfoot. They chew through the grass roots, and with some large infestations, you can actually roll back the turf’s top layer and find grubs rolling around underneath. 

They are most easily taken care of in the summer, with strong prevention methods. 

Chinch Bugs

The next most common lawn pest is chinch bugs. They usually range between 1/8 and 1/4 inch long, most averaging around 1/6 inches long. Common chinch bugs have black bodies and white front wings and a distinctive hourglass shape on their backs. In the immature stages, they are of a reddish color and wingless, but in every other way, are similar to the adults.

The most common signs of damage from chinch bugs are large and irregular patches of dying and browning grass. It’s most apparent in the summer in sunny locations, often causing a misdiagnosis of drought. But once fall comes back, even with regular watering, the grass doesn’t grow back, and the patches continue to spread until all the grass is dead. The reason for this is that the bugs pierce the grass blades and suck the vital juices out of them, blocking the plant’s vascular system and preventing it from gathering moisture or nutrients. 

These lawn pest often require intense treatment to get the issue under control. 

A chinch bug
A billbug


Similar in appearance to white grubs, billbug larvae, also known as grubs, have cream-colored bodies and brown heads. Without legs, they are slightly curved, resembling a grain of puffed rice. Depending on the species, they can reach lengths of 1/4 to 1/2 inches when fully developed. They are a blight on Kentucky bluegrass varieties.

Billbug larvae, no matter the species, wreak havoc on turfgrass through their dining on plant crowns and roots. The tell-tale signs of their feast typically become apparent by June, as individual plants begin to wilt and die from crown-feeding. This initial stage manifests as 2-3 inch wide circles of dead grass. 

As the infestation persists, these circles combine, forming large, misshapen patches of brown and dying turf. Moreover, in regions where the hunting billbug thrives, the spring growth of the grass may be slowed by larvae who overwintered and continued to feed. Notably, high densities of hunting billbug adults have also been known to cause visible damage to stems and leaves.

Sod Webworms

Adult sod webworms often have muddied white, grey, or tan bodies with snout-like projections and a wingspan up to 1 inch. They have dark heads and many dark spots across the entire body.  

They cause damage by chewing through grass at the thatch line (the layer between the soil and the grass), eating the entire stem, or dragging it down into some of the tunnels that they create. The damage is usually first noticed with dying patches of very short grass that quickly spreads across a lawn until all the grass is dead. 

A sod webworm
An armyworm


In the larve state, these pests are around 1 ½ to 2 inches long, with the adults ending at a similar size, often around 1 ½ inches long. Their heads come in many different colors but they have a distinctive inverted Y mark on their heads. The adults have a series of green, yellow, red or brown stripes running in patterns down their sides. Their front wings are dark grey, mottled in white and dark spots, and their hindwings are light grey.

Chewed-up grass or grass blades with signs of damage are often common signs of armyworms, along with small brown dead patches of grass. Bare spaces may appear around your lawn, and grass blades might be damaged enough that you can almost see through them (nearly transparent). 

Love Your Lawn Again!

Benefits of Lawn Insect Control

Controlling pests helps preserve the health and appearances of the lawn, which are important both for the homeowner and for the neighborhood, as a well-manicured lawn can bring up the market price of all the houses around it. 

In addition, preventing unsightly brown patches and bare spots that are caused by insects improves the appearance of the house. It can also help prevent the spread of pests to other plants you may possess in your landscape, such as trees and shrubs, protecting the overall health of your landscape and garden, including any flowers or vegetables you’re growing. 

A lawn dying from insects
A nice large house with a healthy lawn

Don’t Let Lawn Insects Go Uncontrolled

Lawn insects can cause significant (and sometimes irreparable) damage to grass that can take months or years to fix, leaving in the meantime ugly brown spots and bare patches. It leaves the lawn with a sickly appearance that leaves a bad taste in anyone’s mouth, whether they are lawn enthusiasts or homeowners themselves. 

The longer the infestation goes on untreated, the worse the effects can become. All your plants could die. Not to mention your neighbors won’t be happy if your infestation spreads to their yards. 

In addition, many insects (including some of the ones listed here) can carry diseases that affect humans and illnesses that affect plants (such as tomato rot). 

As such, it’s best to solve the problem before it gets out of hand. Give us at Pure Lawn a call, and learn how we can help restore your lawn to its former lush, green glory. 

Love Your Lawn Again!