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White Grub Prevention Management: Which Option is Right for You?

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grubs damage in the dirt

When thinking about white grub prevention management, there are a few product options to consider. Control options for preventing white grubs include imidacloprid (Merit), clothianidin (Arena), chlorantraniliprole (Acelepryn), and tetraniliprole (Tetrino).   

Imidacloprid (Merit)

Imidacloprid has been in the green industry for some time and is the most common preventative control for grubs. It is a systemic and water-soluble chemical that moves through the plant and is absorbed into the plant tissue with water, thus providing plant protectant properties against insects. It works on most insects, including beetles and soft-bodied insects like whiteflies and aphids.  

When it comes to applying imidacloprid, it is essential to water it in immediately after applying it. To receive the most effective results from imidacloprid, apply it before the time of egg hatch. Note: Imidacloprid lasts 90 days, so if you put it down early, you will be waning on the residual and missing out on control of the eggs that hatch later. The best time for an imidacloprid grub prevention application is July 4th.  

Clothianidin (Arena)

Like imidacloprid, clothianidin is a systemic insecticide, but it does not require immediate watering-in after application. Clothianidin works well on chinch bugs and white grubs, including the Japanese beetle and masked chafers.

Clothianidin can be used pre or post-emergence, and it has a quick knockdown. If you have an active grub infestation, you can get speedier knockdown post control of grubs with clothianidin than with other actives. For prevention control, apply clothianidin July 4th or late June/early July.  

Chlorantraniliprole (Acelepyrn)

Chlorantraniliprole controls insects foliarly and systemically and is an excellent choice for controlling sub-surface feeders, like white grubs and weevils, as well as surface-feeders. Overall, it has a little wider control than imidacloprid and clothianidin. 

The key to chlorantraniliprole: apply early in the season (April or May). It takes a little while for it to get activated in the soil, so early is best. Putting it down at egg hatch will be too late; the efficacy drops as you get closer to the egg hatch date.

What would be the benefits of applying earlier? That application is out of the way, and you can catch some of those earlier pests, like the bluegrass billbug.

Tetraniliprole (Tetrino)

Tetraniliprole is a new insecticide from Bayer. It moves systemically through the plant via xylem distribution, which causes the targeted insects to stop feeding immediately and for you to see visible results quickly. Tetraniliprole offers superb protection from white grubs, the annual bluegrass weevil, and caterpillars.  

As far as applying goes, tetraniliprole has flexible application timing, letting you take a preventative or early curative approach. Apply tetraniliprole in late June through early August before egg hatching and larvae feeding. 

 

*Application timing may differ slightly depending on your location; the timing was based in Indiana and the Midwest in this article. Reach out to your local Advanced Turf representative to learn more about applying and timing.