Have you ever seen a lawn mite? They are teeny tiny red, green, orange or brown bugs most people never notice. They are as small as a grain of sand. Every yard has a few of them so do not be worried if you see a handful at your home. (Photo credit to our 5 year old daughter, who made it her mission, to catch one for this blog.)
Lawn Mites cause serious problems when they reach infestation stages. Because of Colorado’s dry winters, lawn mites thrive in warm, dry conditions, and cause damage while grass is dormant. Damage won’t be evident until irrigation is turned on and sections of lawn do not green up. Mites tend to prefer south or west facing lawns, especially sloped areas, since they tend to be warmer and drier. Mites prefer edges of grass (along driveways and sidewalks) which we call hot spots since the edges tend to be warmer.
You can also monitor and check your lawn and water from your spigot during winter to keep your lawn from suffering drought damage, desiccation, and keep lawn mites from getting to infestation stages. A customer had lawn mite infestation 3 years in a row, the 4th year they did not require any insect control application – the difference was they watered during dormant months every 2 weeks to keep their West and South facing lawn from getting too dry and stopped the mites from reaching damaging levels.
A quick tip, is to take a piece of paper or card stock and swipe it over the grass in that area. If it is streaked with tiny red, brown orange or green dots, you have lawn mites and will need to get it treated.