Life Cycle of the European Chafer Beetle
The European chafer beetle originated in continental Europe but is now an invasive species found in temperate climates in North America, where they are often called June bugs. The large grubs of the chafer feed on the roots of both wild and cultivated cool-latitude grasses, which has made them a critter-non-grata on North American lawns.
Knowing the beetle’s life cycle can help you defend your lawn against an infestation. Read on to find out more.
The chafer’s life cycle
The chafer’s life cycle is one year. The imago (adult) stage is only 1–2 weeks long, with adult beetles growing to approximately 13–14 millimetres (0.51–0.55 in) in length. The adult chafers emerge from the ground in late spring and mate in large swarms, usually on shrubs and low trees. They are most active on warm, clear nights when the temperature is over 19C (66F). The beetles come out of the ground at about 8:30 pm, mate through the night, and then return to the soil before the sun rises; they may return to the trees to mate again several times over the mating period.
Female chafer beetles lay between 20–40 eggs over their lifespan; the eggs are laid about 5–10 centimetres (2.0–3.9 in) deep in moist soil, and then take 2 weeks to hatch. The grubs hatch by late July. In frost zones, the grubs feed until November and then move deeper into the soil. In frost-free areas, however, the larva feed all winter. Intense feeding occurs from March through May. Then, in early June, the grubs move deeper again, from 5 centimetres to 25 centimetres (2.0–9.8 in), where they form earthen cells and pupate. The pre-pupal stage lasts 2–4 days and the pupal stage lasts 2 weeks. By June, the new beetles begin emerging from the ground.
Beware other critters, too
Not only do the larvae feed on roots, wreaking havoc on lawns, but they attract local fauna like crows, foxes, and raccoons, who dig up the grass in search of the grubs. So, in addition to root damage, homeowners also have to worry about destruction caused by larger creatures.
Why is it important to know about the life cycle of the Chafer beetle?
Knowing the life cycle of the Chafer Beetle helps illustrate is when the beetle is most susceptible to treatment which will help exterminate the pest. The beetle’s most susceptible time is when it is the egg form in late July. Although treatment can help in early times in the season, July is the most optimal time to apply your treatment. It’s also important to note that treatment should not be a one time thing.
In order to ensure the treatment and the extemination of the beetle, it is recommended to apply multiple treatments to your lawn or garden.
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“We don’t inherit the earth from our ancestors. We borrow it from our children.”
Nature is Green Infrastructure
Nature and infrastructure are not independent of each other; on the contrary, nature is infrastructure. From protecting communities from flooding and excessive heat to improving air and water quality, nature is not only a critically important element of infrastructure but also a vital part of human and environmental health. When nature is used as an infrastructural system, it’s referred to as green infrastructure.
Green infrastructure can be a highlight of regional and metropolitan planning, helping ensure communities have a safe, livable environment with clean air and water that lasts for generations. Although green infrastructure is often associated with green storm water management systems, it can be used to address a wide range of systems at a variety of scales.
Green systems can be used for wildlife, which are increasingly threatened by human encroachment and climate change. For example, corridors or greenways allow animals to move through human communities; these have the added benefit of being a beautiful space that people want to live near.
Park systems, urban forests, and constructed wetlands also serve as green infrastructure. Constructed wetlands help communities manage water locally and provide habitats for wildlife.
Moreover, green infrastructure practices at the site-scale are used by smart communities for transportation systems (such as green streets) and green roofs, weaving nature into the built environment.
Research shows us that green infrastructure works. Compared to grey infrastructure, green systems are more cost-effective and far more beneficial to people and the environment.
Soil Structure for Green Roof Media Green roofs or living roofs have become popular over the years. This is because they provide ecological benefits, aesthetic value and creative urban architecture. When designing a green roof, there are several factors to take into consideration. Green roof growing media is an integral part of a functioning green roof system. […]
Where is Structural Soil Used?
After some experience with gardening and landscaping, you will find that in some cases, standard soil just won’t do. You may need to provide a better, more solid base for large plants such as trees and bushes to grow successfully. This is where knowing about structural soil will help.
Structural soil contains larger solid particles and provides more structure that normal soil. These added solid particles create a firm structural base while allowing plant and tree roots to weave around the soil pockets. Structural soil is comprised of a mixture of gap-graded gravels, which are typically made from crushed stone, a hydrogen stabilizing agent and clay loam. This type of soil is perfect when planning to plant trees, especially beside pavement sidewalks or roadways.
Can you picture walking on a beautifully, manicured concrete walkway? Most likely you picture a tree beside this walkway that helps to shape this beautiful image. Structural engineers more often than not will focus on the construction of the concrete walkway or the surrounding road, neglecting the need for a green environment. For this reason, landscape designers are quite important, as they know to choose the right soil for the right result.
By working together with structural engineers, landscape designers are able to successfully grow trees in paved areas. This is normally a challenge due to inadequate soil volume, which is a major requirement for root growth. Soils found under the pavement are usually very compacted, which is the reason why they are unable to support root growth. Only a few trees grow under pavement and when they do, they grow very poorly, dying eventually. It is also worth noting that with the wrong soil the pavement ends up being affected by the root growth. That is why there is need for use of structural soil.
Best Places for Structural Soil
Structural soil has become the best solution for tree-growing in urban settings. This type of soil has been proven to improve tree growth in paved areas, therefore it is the best way to promote street tree planting. Structural soil is used to provide a solid base, which is meant to support masses and at the same time allow for the growth of roots. The result is a perfect crack-free pavement, with a healthy tree growing as expected.
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