Entomologist talks armyworms in West Tennessee

JACKSON, Tenn. — An entomologist says there have been a number of reports from extension agents of armyworms in fields in West Tennessee.

Although some homeowners are growing concerned, the population of armyworms is not as severe as it was in 2021 when they reportedly impacted both row crops as well as the grass in lawns.

Sebe Brown, a University of Tennessee Extension entomologist, shared some updates on the armyworm crisis and dispelled rumors that the populations we are seeing are the same as it was several seasons ago.

Since lawn and garden stores often sell armyworm treatments, it is important for homeowners to make wise decisions regarding how they respond to reports of them.

“There is no guarantee that armyworms will show up in your yard. There’s different grass preferences they like. They really like Bermuda, but not a big fan of Zoysia. And so if you’ve got a Bermuda grass lawn, you’ll know when they show up. So the big thing is what we call ‘scouting.’ Go out and look. If you see armyworms on your grass, that means they’re there. If you don’t have armyworms, there’s nothing you can really do to prevent them,” Brown said.

Ideally, you should contact your local extension office for more information on armyworm treatments for your specific county.

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