Root-feeding insects (white grubs)

By The Old House Web

Root-feeding insects (white grubs)

List of files and visuals associated with this text.


The two most important groups of insects that feed on landscape plant roots in the soil are weevil larvae and scarab beetle larvae. These immature soil insects are often referred to as "white grubs." The adult insects and the damage they cause by feeding on plant leaves are described in the weevil and scarab beetle sections.

Weevil grubs vary in size from 1/16 inch to 3/8 inch long, while the larger scarab grubs may reach a length of 1 1/2 inches. Weevil grubs can be distinguished from scarab grubs by the weevil grubs' lack of legs. Larvae of the black vine weevil and strawberry root weevil are frequent pests of landscape plants. Scarab grubs, such as June beetle larvae, occasionally attack trees and shrub roots. Scarab grubs become a serious problem when trees or shrubs are planted into an area previously maintained as sod or pasture. The starving grubs then feed on the tree or shrub roots, causing serious damage.

Visuals associated with this text.

Visual title - Visual size Visual title - Visual size
June beetle - 31K White grub damage on potato. - 36K
White grub damage on lawn - 71K White grub - 52K
Wireworm damage on carrot - 25K Wireworm - 27K
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