Armyworm control

Armyworm (Spodoptera frugiperda (JE Smith).

Armyworms do their dirty work in the dark: They feed together in groups at night and hide during the day in the centers of plants or under leaf litter. The last time they were seen in the vicinity of New Mexico, Arizona and California, and to the east of the Rocky Mountains and in the south-eastern Canada.


Larvae feed on lawn grasses, garden plants, corn, and other crops, particularly asparagus, beans, beets, cabbage, cucumbers, lettuce, spinach, and tomatoes. When food supply is depleted, they move en masse to a new location. Larvae can consume whole plants overnight. Description Adults are pale, grayish brown moths with 11⁄2- to 2-inch wingspans. They have a white dot in the center of each forewing. Because they fly at night, they are seldom seen.

The young caterpillars, or armyworms, are smooth, pale

green, and up to 11⁄2 inches long. Older armyworms are

greenish brown with white side stripes and dark or light

stripes along their backs. The moths lay their greenish white egg masses on lower leaves.

Crime Prevention

Attract native parasitic wasps and flies by planting pollen

and nectar plants.

Control grassy weeds where infestations often start.


Spray Bacillus thuringiensis var. kurstaki (BTK) to control the caterpillars.

Spray summer oil (on plants that tolerate oil sprays) in July to kill eggs.

After harvest, turn the soil to expose pupae to natural enemies. Armyworm natural enemies can completely clean your garden from its.

Read also: Garden Pest Control