Lawn in bad condition with patchy yellow and brown grass
Home - Garden
Crane Flies Could Be Doing Serious Damage To Your Lawn
Having adult crane flies flying around your lawn is normal, and usually isn't cause for concern. The problem, however, is with their larvae, which are called leatherjackets.
In the grub stage, leatherjackets live underground and chew on the fresh grass roots of your lawn, and predators will tear up large sections of grass in pursuit of them.
If you see patches of your lawn that have turned yellow or brown, lift them up. If leatherjackets are the cause, you will see them — fat little grubs with no legs, head, or tail.
Sometimes they will damage plants at the soil level, but most species of crane flies are not dangerous, and in fact, are considered to be part of a healthy garden.
Leatherjackets are extremely difficult to get rid of, as there are no chemicals currently available that kill them. You must fight larvae with microscopic worms called nematodes.
If you suspect an infestation, you’ll need to scarify first, a process using metal blades to dethatch your lawn. Then, use nematode products, such as Nemasys Leatherjacket Killer.