European Chafer Beetles

Have you noticed the turned-up lawns across the Tri-Cities? The problem of the European Chafer Beetle is plaguing not only private residences, but City lawns as well. The beetle “grubs” feed on grass and plant roots, and attract animals and birds to tear up the lawn in search of them.


Even if the beetle hasn’t appeared, it’s a good idea to understand how to protect your lawn against an infestation.

To test your lawn for Chafer Beetle grubs, cut three sides of a 30cm x 30cm square of sod/turf to a depth of 5cm. Fold back the square patch and count the grubs in the soil by digging around. Cut five more squares of sod/turf in different areas of your lawn, count the grubs in each square. If more than 5-10 grubs per square are found, then chafer control may be necessary. Testing your lawn is best to do January through March.

To control an infestation, order nematodes and apply them in late July to mid-August. Since lawns need to be kept moist after application, a water exemption permit can be attained through the City.

To prevent an infestation, keep your lawn healthy by aerating, fertilizing,
watering and mowing. A healthy lawn is your best method of defense!
Aerating your lawn is best done in the Spring.

Learn more about chafer beetles, and how to protect your lawn against them, at