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The Best Insect Killers to Leave Your Lawn Pest-Free

The great outdoors is filled with insects. They can live absolutely anywhere: in trees, shrubs, water, on furniture, the list goes on. However, grass and soil are among the favorite places for insects to live, hide, and breed in. Because on hot summer days, the grass hides the pests from the sun. While on windy days it protects them from being blown away. And since children and pets love to play outdoors, especially on the grass, it's important to know which tools to use to control the pests in our lawns and to minimize the presence of these undesirable guests. So we compiled a list of some of the very best insect killers for your lawn currently available.

The great outdoors is filled with insects. They can live absolutely anywhere: in trees, shrubs, water, on furniture, the list goes on. However, grass and soil are among the favorite places for insects to live, hide, and breed in. Because on hot summer days, the grass hides the pests from the sun. While on windy days it protects them from being blown away. And since children and pets love to play outdoors, especially on the grass, it's important to know which tools to use to control the pests in our lawns and to minimize the presence of these undesirable guests. So we compiled a list of some of the very best insect killers for your lawn currently available.

THE BEST LAWN SPRAY

Spectracide Triazicide Spray

This product can kill practically all the pests you could possibly find in your lawn. It not only kills pests above the ground but also below the ground.

A POWERFUL INSECT KILLER

Ortho Bug B Gon Insect Killer

A powerful and effective solution to kill most common lawn insects. After application it provides a few months of protection against various pests.

THE BEST LAWN GRANULES
lawn pest control

Spectracide Triazicide Killer

This product is great for killing insects above and below the ground. Choose this product if you have a large area to treat.

1

Spectracide Triazicide Insect Killer Spray

THE BEST LAWN SPRAY

What we like:

What we don't like:

  • Toxic to aquatic creatures
  • Contains chemicals

Review

The manufacturer of this Spectracide Triazicide Insect Killer Spray is an international company called the United Industries Corporation. It produces many different home products intended controlling pests and weeds in the lawn and garden, one of them being Spectracide. It concentrates on producing products only for home and garden insect and weed control purposes. Since the United Industries Corporation is a smaller company which provides fewer brands, it can concentrate more on its customers. This allows the company to develop each brand with extra attention. Sometimes being a smaller company has more advantages than disadvantages.

This Spectracide Triazicide Insect Killer Spray should be shaken well before using. Then you simply have to attach the bottle to a hose and turn on the water. Even though it is very simple to use, there are a few precautionary measures which you should consider beforehand. This product contains chemicals and could be toxic. You should never use this lawn insecticide when it is raining. You also should not add additional water to the treated area. Using this product near water collection points such as rain gutters and drains is completely prohibited as its interaction with standing water can cause harm to humans and pets. It is important to note that this product is toxic to all aquatic creatures. For that reason, you should avoid using it near any open bodies water such as lakes, ponds, or at the seaside.

While the Spectracide Triazicide Insect Killer Spray can be used on fruits and vegetables, you should be careful about using it when the harvest date is approaching. It can also treat different plants, trees, and bushes as well as everything in your backyard, even the patio and the outer walls of your house. It is completely harmless to children and animals when dry. It leaves behind no residues or smells. Do not use this product indoors, though, because it can cause harm if swallowed. So, you should be extremely careful when there are small kids around.

Overall, this Spectracide Triazicide Insect Killer Spray has proven itself to be both efficient and long-lasting. If you are looking for something to get rid of all bugs, this is your best option. Not only does it work on the surface but also underground, making sure that you are free from both visible and invisible pests.

Specifications:

  • Product Type: Spray
  • Net Volume: 32 oz. (946 ml)
  • Active Ingredients: Gamma-cyhalothrin
  • Covers: 5120 sq. ft. (475 sq. m)
  • Lasts: Up to 3 months
  • Target Pests: Over 260 species, including house crickets, carpenter ants, harvester ants, ladybugs, earwigs, fleas, ticks, and mosquitos.
  • Natural: No
  • Kid-Safe: Yes
  • Pet-Safe: Yes
  • Residue: No
  • Use: Outdoors only
  • Other Features: Comes in a ready-to-spray bottle; kills pests above and below ground
2

Ortho Bug B Gon Insect Killer Spray

A POWERFUL INSECT KILLER

What we like:

What we don't like:

  • Toxic to bees, fish, and small aquatic organisms
  • Contains chemicals
  • The bottles tend to leak

Review

This Ortho Bug B Gon Insect Killer Spray is manufactured and marketed by the Scotts Miracle-Gro Company. This international company is the world’s largest manufacturer, marketer, and seller of consumer lawn and garden products. They have over twenty different brands and are present in eighteen different countries all over the globe. Ortho is just one of the many fine products. Their niche is in home garden and lawn supplies, including brands such as the weed-fighting RoundUp and Miracle-Gro, the plant food. Not only do they manufacture and sell these products, but the Scotts Miracle-Gro Company has research facilities all over the US. This shows that their products are always made with the latest innovations and remain up-to-date with the newest formulas.

There are just three simple moves between you and an insect-free lawn and garden. To use this Ortho Bug B Gon Insect Killer Spray, you simply have to shake the bottle well and then connect the bottle to a hose and turn on the water. When you have turned the water on, you can start spraying the necessary areas. You should apply this product when you first notice insects or signs of damage to plants. The sooner you start treatment, the better the results will be. But, you should wait at least seven days to reapply this product between each treatment.

As a lawn insecticide, the Ortho Bug B Gon Insect Killer Spray is great for lawns, gardens, and the perimeter of homes. It is perfect for treating roses, trees, and shrubs. Feel free to use it around the house, on the patio, and in other living areas as it is not dangerous for children or animals. Check the booklet that comes with the spray to see how long before harvest you can use this product on fruits and vegetables, as it does contain chemicals which should not be consumed. Do not use this product inside dwellings as it is for outdoor use only. Even though this insect killer does contain toxins and chemicals, it leaves behind no residues or synthetic smells.

Overall, when you consider the large variety of insects that Ortho Bug B Gon Insect Killer Spray can kill and keep away from your garden and lawn, it is clear why it has made our list of the best products. It is highly efficient and long-lasting.

Specifications:

  • Product Type: Spray
  • Net Volume: 32 oz. (946 ml)
  • Active Ingredients: Bifenthrin and zeta-cypermethrin
  • Covers: 5300 sq. ft. (492 sq. m)
  • Lasts: Up to 6 months (for spiders); 2-3 months for other pests
  • Target Pests: Over 235 species, including ants, fleas, ticks, spiders, and mosquitoes.
  • Natural: No
  • Kid-Safe: Yes
  • Pet-Safe: Yes
  • Residue: No
  • Use: Outdoors only
  • Other Features: Comes in a ready-to-spray bottle
3

Spectracide Triazicide Insect Killer Granules

THE BEST LAWN GRANULES

What we like:

What we don't like:

  • Contains chemicals
  • Toxic to aquatic creatures
  • A spreader is needed for proper application. (Not included)

Review

The manufacturer of these Spectracide Triazicide Insect Killer Granules was already mentioned above. Spectracide is just one of the many different brands from The United Industries Corporation. Its focus is on insect and weed control in gardens and lawns.

To use this product, you will need a granule spreader. These Spectracide Triazicide Insect Killer Granules work like other granules. You use a spreader to broadcast them around your backyard or other areas that need treatment. Water the area lightly after the granules have been applied, making sure not to flood the ground. Wait until the grass has dried and you will have an insect-free backyard.

As the product is safe for kids and animals after drying, there will be no residue, smell, or any particles left behind by the granules. Your loved ones will be completely safe when in the treated area. The product protects your lawn for the whole season, which equals about three months. You can, of course, re-treat the area, if necessary, before those three months have passed.

Even though this product is safe for humans and animals, it is extremely toxic to the underwater world. The use of this product to treat drains, sewers, and open water is prohibited. Also, if you do not use up the whole bag in one go, you should store it in a dark, dry spot out of the reach of children and animals, as the raw granules are toxic.

Specifications:

  • Product Type: Granules
  • Net Weight: 20 lbs. (9 kg)
  • Active Ingredients: Gamma-cyhalothrin
  • Covers: 25,000 sq. ft. (2322 sq. m)
  • Lasts: About 3 months
  • Target Pests: Over 100 species, including ants, crickets, centipedes, pillbugs, fleas, and grubs
  • Natural: No
  • Kid-Safe: Yes
  • Pet-Safe: Yes
  • Residue: No
  • Use: Outdoors only
  • Other Features: Kills pests above and below ground

Other Products to Consider

4

BioAdvanced Complete Insect Killer

TARGETS SURFACE AND SOIL PESTS

What we like:

What we don't like:

  • Contains small amounts of chemicals and toxins
  • Very quick flow
  • For use on lawns and building foundations only.

Review

This BioAdvanced Complete Insect Killer is a product from the SBM Life Science Corporation. It develops, manufactures, and distributes garden and lawn care products. This company is one of the leading manufacturers of organic and natural home and garden insect control products. While the SBM Life Science Corporation tries to make their products as natural and chemical-free as possible, they do still contain small amounts of active ingredients. The company not only manufactures products but also invests a lot of time and funds into researching innovations and new formulas. This is done in hopes of upgrading existing products and introducing new ones.

It is simple to use this BioAdvanced Complete Insect Killer. Just shake the bottle well and connect it to a water hose. When ready, turn on the water and spray the product over the desired area. BioAdvanced Complete Insect Killer will leave behind no visible residue or lingering smells. It should not be used on plants, so you should be careful when using this product near fruits and vegetables.

It is safe to use in areas where pets and children will be, but that is only true after the product is dry. When you are using this product, make sure that your pets and children do not come in contact with it. It may cause harm or an allergic reaction if inhaled or consumed. After you have treated the desired area, make sure the product dries completely so that your loved ones will be safe.

Overall, this BioAdvanced Complete Insect Killer is extremely efficient at fighting insects above and below the ground. You will be able to see results within the first few hours. Within 24 hours all insects – or at least the majority of them – should be gone completely. This lawn insecticide provides protection for up to three months, making it not only efficient but also long-lasting.

Specifications:

  • Product Type: Spray
  • Net Volume: 32 oz. (946 ml)
  • Active Ingredients: Beta-cyfluthrin and imidacloprid
  • Covers: 5000 sq. ft. (464 sq. m)
  • Lasts: Up to 3 months
  • Target Pests: Kills the most common lawn pests including ants, fleas, ticks, European Crane Fly larvae, grubs, mole crickets, mosquitos, and many more
  • Natural: No
  • Kid-Safe: Yes
  • Pet-Safe: Yes
  • Residue: No
  • Use: Outdoors only
  • Other Features: Comes in a ready-to-spray bottle
5

Bonide Insect & Grub Control Granules

GOOD AT KILLING INSECTS AND GRUBS

What we like:

What we don't like:

  • A spreader is needed for proper application. (Not included)
  • Contains chemicals

Review

These Bonide Insect & Grub Control Granules are manufactured by Bonide Products, who make many different, efficient pest control products. The company has spread all over the world and has a very innovative business approach. It is always seeking new and improved ways to ensure that our gardens, backyards, and lawns are free of insects and pests.

The Bonide Insect & Grub Control Granules differ from the above-mentioned sprays. First, to use this product, you need to not only purchase the product itself but also a spreading device. This device is similar to a lawnmower but works without electricity. You put the proper amount of the product in the spreader, flip the lock open, and then you are ready to treat your backyard. You have to manually treat the whole area, which can be up to 7500 sq. feet (696 sq. m) in size. But, since the spreader is not very heavy, it should not be a problem. These devices are manufactured to minimize the messiness of treating your backyard.

As this product is safe for children and animals, you do not have to worry about them playing in the backyard. After you have treated the area, you must water the area lightly and wait for it to dry. The product will infiltrate the soil and leave no residue or odors behind. If you do not use the whole bag, it is very easy to store. Just seal the bag and store it in a dark, safe spot until the next use, making sure to keep it out of the reach of pets or children.

Overall, this is a very innovative product. The only downside is the need for a spreader. It would not be as efficient or effective to spread these granules by hand, so unless you already have one, a spreader will cost you extra money. But once you have purchased one, it will work with every product of this kind for many seasons to come.

Specifications:

  • Product Type: Granules
  • Net Weight: 6 lbs. (2.72 kg)
  • Active Ingredients: Imidacloprid and lambda-cyhalothrin
  • Covers: 7500 sq. ft. (696 sq. m)
  • Lasts: Up to 3 months
  • Target Pests: Kills grubs and 40 additional pests including ants, ticks, chinch bugs, and mole crickets.
  • Natural: No
  • Kid-Safe: Yes
  • Pet-Safe: Yes
  • Residue: No
  • Use: Outdoors only
  • Other Features: Combines systemic and fast-acting methods of insect control
6

Cutter Backyard Bug Control Spray

AN EFFECTIVE ABOVEGROUND SPRAY

What we like:

What we don't like:

  • Toxic to aquatic creatures
  • Contains chemicals

Review

This Cutter Backyard Bug Control Spray comes from the same manufacturer as the previously-mentioned Spectracide Triazicide. Cutter is one of the United Industries Corporation’s seven lines of insect repellents and garden care products. It distributes insect repellent products along with repellent candles.

This product works just like the other lawn sprays mentioned earlier. You simply attach the spray bottle to a garden hose, making sure to do so safely to ensure that there are no possible leaks. When ready, turn on the water. Since the bottle design ensures that the water mixes automatically with the product, no other supplies are necessary. You will have to manually treat the desired area by pointing the nozzle in the correct direction, moving from area to area as necessary. This Cutter Backyard Bug Control Spray comes in a 32-oz. (946-ml) bottle. If you do not have 5000 sq. ft. (464 sq. m) of lawn, you can close the bottle and place it in dark, dry place for storage, making sure that it is out of the reach of children.

Cutter Backyard Bug Control Spray is safe for adults, children, and animals. Your plants will not be harmed if you treat them with this Cutter Backyard Bug Control Spray. It may, however, harm bees and butterflies, so do not apply it in areas that bees and butterflies visit. While this product will leave no residue, it is always a good idea to do a test spray first. Never water the area so heavily that you achieve runoff. To avoid runoff, do not use this lawn pest control when it is raining. The direct application of this spray to sewers, drains, or any other body of water is prohibited because it is dangerous and toxic to sea creatures.

Overall, this lawn spray is one of the best insect killers for lawns as it is very simple to use and will protect your garden and backyard throughout the summer. In addition to the mosquitos that everyone hates, this Cutter Backyard Bug Control Spray will also protect from and deter many other undesirable insects to leave your yard pest-free.

Specifications:

  • Product Type: Spray
  • Net Volume: 32 oz. (946 ml)
  • Active Ingredients: Lambda-cyhalothrin
  • Covers: 5000 sq. ft. (464 sq. m)
  • Lasts: Up to 4 weeks for most insects; up to 12 weeks for house crickets, carpenter ants, harvester ants, ladybugs, and earwigs
  • Target Pests: Mosquitoes, ants, grubs, fleas, deer ticks, and the other listed insects
  • Natural: No
  • Kid-Safe: Yes
  • Pet-Safe: Yes
  • Residue: No
  • Use: Outdoors only
  • Other Features: Kills pests above and below ground
7

Spectracide Triazicide Insect Killer Concentrate

KILLS PESTS ABOVE AND BELOW THE GROUND

What we like:

What we don't like:

  • Contains chemicals
  • Toxic to aquatic creatures
  • A sprayer is needed for proper application. (Not included)

Review

The Spectracide brand has already come up twice in this list of the best insect killers for lawns. Both the ready-to-spray and granules are excellent options for lawn pest control. But now we have come to the Spectracide Triazicide Insect Killer Concentrate. As we said before, the United Industries Corporation has several brands that it uses to distribute different insecticides and garden treatment products. Since this company only manufactures and distributes products meant for gardens and the outdoors, they have developed them to achieve the highest quality and effectiveness possible. That is why, with Spectracide, you can expect a product that will actually help, to leave you with a backyard that is free from mosquitoes and other insects.

This Spectracide Triazicide Insect Killer Concentrate is similar to the other lawn pest control sprays. But, instead of attaching it to a hose, you mix the product with water yourself in a sprayer according to the included instructions. Then you simply need to get spraying! This gives you more mobility since you will not need to drag your garden hose around and can stop and start spraying whenever you wish. The downside is that you will need to buy a sprayer if you do not have one, but these can last for years.

Use this Spectracide Triazicide Insect Killer Concentrate to treat lawns, flowers, vegetable gardens, fruit and nut trees, ornamental trees and shrubs, and even outdoor furniture or the walls of your house. This product will leave no residue after application and, once dry, is not dangerous to either children or animals. As with other products, do not apply this treatment during rain or to the point of runoff. To be safe, do not allow children and animals to enter the treated area until it has dried completely. The only major negative aspect of this product is that it is toxic to aquatic life, such as fish and all other living things in the water. While you can apply to the walls and furniture, you should not do so more than 3 ft. (91 cm) above the ground.

Overall, this Spectracide Triazicide Insect Killer Concentrate is very effective. With its fast-acting formula, it kills immediately. You will not be disappointed as it does kill insects above and below the ground, lasting for up to eight weeks. Moreover, as it is safe for kids and animals, you will not have to worry about the chemicals negatively affecting them.

Specifications:

  • Product Type: Concentrate
  • Net Volume: 32 oz. (946 ml)
  • Active Ingredients: Gamma-cyhalothrin
  • Covers: 5120 sq. ft. (475 sq. m)
  • Lasts: Up to 8 weeks for most insects; up to 4 weeks for fire ants
  • Target Pests: Over 260 species, including ants, cockroaches, fleas, mosquitoes, spiders, and deer ticks
  • Natural: No
  • Kid-Safe: Yes
  • Pet-Safe: Yes
  • Residue: No
  • Use: Outdoors only
  • Other Features: Kills pests above and below ground; fast-acting formula
8

EcoSMART Insect Granules

SAFE FOR CHILDREN AND PETS

What we like:

What we don't like:

  • A spreader is needed for proper application. (Not included)
  • Does not kill instantly

Review

A company called EcoSMART is the manufacturer of these organic EcoSMART Insect Granules. They have over fifteen years of experience in researching and manufacturing the best solutions and ingredients to create completely organic and natural insecticides and pesticides. Their mission is to create the safest possible insecticides on the market. These products will not harm humans, animals, or the environment. While many insecticides are completely safe for humans and animals, most are extremely toxic to aquatic creatures. Besides, accidents do occur and if chemical-based products are handled without caution, they can end up causing harm to humans and animals. That is why creating completely safe and natural products is beneficial for everyone.

These EcoSMART Insect Granules need to be spread over the area to be treated. This can be done by hand while wearing plastic gloves. But a spreader will be more convenient, more efficient, and safer. When using a spreader, you will not have to touch the granules with your hands and you will avoid the chance of the product getting into your eyes, nose, or mouth. Even though this product is completely natural, we should avoid allowing any pest control product to enter our bodies. This insect killer can be used on lawns, around the house, and on landscaping. It can also be used on different plants and flowers as well as around trees, shrubs, and vegetables.

There is a slight difference in the way it works compared to the above-mentioned products. The previous insect killers work on contact and kill their target pests very quickly. EcoSMART Insect Granules, on the other hand, work gradually. While they do not give immediate results, the results will show over time. So, if you need very fast results, this will not be the best option for you. You can be sure, however, that over time, it will get rid of all insects and bugs.

The product is not specific about how long it will keep the pests away from your garden because this changes from one location to another. It recommended reapplying every 2-4 weeks around your foundation and every 4-6 on your landscaping. You can reapply as necessary, so look after your yard and when you notice that the insects are returning, reapply these EcoSMART Insect Granules.

Specifications:

  • Product Type: Granules
  • Net Weight: 10 lbs. (4.5 kg)
  • Active Ingredients: Eugenol, thyme oil, and wintergreen oil
  • Covers: 5000 sq. ft. (464 sq. m)
  • Lasts: Up to 4 weeks, depending on the severity of the infestation and the weather conditions
  • Target Pests: Over 100 species, including ants, armyworms, billbugs, chiggers, crickets, fleas, earwigs, scorpions, spiders, and ticks
  • Natural: Yes
  • Kid-Safe: Yes
  • Pet-Safe: Yes
  • Residue: No
  • Use: Outdoors only
  • Other Features: Completely natural and organic
9

Sevin Lawn Insect Granules

GREAT FOR LARGER AREAS

What we like:

What we don't like:

  • Contains chemicals
  • A spreader is needed for proper application. (Not included)

Review

The inventor and manufacturer of these Sevin Lawn Insect Granules is Garden Tech. This company has several different brands which all are designed to treat your home’s outdoor area, whether it is a lawn, a garden, or plants. Garden Tech’s products are highly popular and respected by retailers, gardeners, and homeowners as an effective and high-quality option.

Use the Sevin Lawn Insect Granules in the same way as the other insect-killing granules. Simply place the bag on top of the spreader and treat the necessary area. On the back of the package, you will find a handy table which will tell you the appropriate settings to use for the different types of spreaders so that you can be sure the product is applied correctly. After you have spread these Sevin Lawn Insect Granules where necessary, you have to thoroughly water the treated area to allow the granules to release their chemicals. Then let the area dry completely before reentering.

After drying off, your backyard, grass, flowers, and trees will be free from many insects and pests. Also, after the product has dried, it will leave no residue behind and will be completely safe for humans and animals to enjoy. They can even roll around in the grass without any worries on your part.

Be careful when using this product around water sources, drains, and sewers, as this product can be toxic to aquatic lifeforms and should be used with caution. Also, do not use this product if it is raining or if it is about to rain.

Specifications:

  • Product Type: Granules
  • Net Weight: 20 lbs. (9.08 kg)
  • Active Ingredients: Carbaryl
  • Covers: 8600 sq. ft. (799 sq. m)
  • Lasts: Approximately 3 months, but can be reapplied sooner if necessary
  • Target Pests: Over 30 species, including ticks, fleas, worms, and ants
  • Natural: No
  • Kid-Safe: Yes
  • Pet-Safe: Yes
  • Residue: No
  • Use: Outdoors only
  • Other Features: Kills pests above and below ground
10

Ortho Bug B Gon Insect Killer Granules

CREATES EFFECTIVE BARRIER

What we like:

What we don't like:

  • Contains chemicals
  • A spreader is needed for proper application. (Not included)

Review

These Ortho Bug B Gon Insect Killer Granules are manufactured and distributed by the Scotts Miracle-Gro Company. This company also produces the Ortho Bug B Gon Insect Killer Spray which we included in our top three products.

To use the Ortho Bug B Gon Insect Killer Granules, you need to scatter the granules throughout the area that needs treatment. These granules can be used on grass, lawns, flower beds, gardens, plants, and shrubs. You will need a spreader designed to apply granule products in order to get the best out of this product. One 10-lb. (4.52-kg) bag of this product covers an area of up to 10,000 sq. ft. (929 sq. m), which is more than the quantity of insecticide can usually treat. It should be applied in all necessary areas. While it is not mandatory, for a better result, you should water the area throughout after application. This will allow the product to enter the soil and treat the area as thoroughly as possible.

While this product is safe for children and animals, you should not let them into the treated area until the product has dried completely. Once there are no traces of it left, you will not need to worry about your kids or pets playing in the grass. Ortho Bug B Gon Insect Killer Granules will not leave any residue or smells behind.

Like many lawn insecticides, you should not use this product in or near sewers, drains, rain gutters, or any other body of water, as it is toxic to sea creatures. This product should be applied and the empty package disposed of with the necessary caution so that no harm to the environment is caused as a consequence of your actions. If you do not finish the package, after using it, close the package well and store it in a dark, cool place, well out of the reach of children and animals.

Specifications:

  • Product Type: Granules
  • Net Weight: 10 lbs. (4.52 kg)
  • Active Ingredients: Bifenthrin
  • Covers: 10,000 sq. ft. (929 sq. m)
  • Lasts: Up to 3 months
  • Target Pests: Over 100 species, including ants, fleas, ticks, cutworms, mole crickets, and chinch bugs
  • Natural: No
  • Kid-Safe: Yes
  • Pet-Safe: Yes
  • Residue: No
  • Use: Outdoors only
  • Other Features: Covers a larger territory than most lawn insecticides

Which type of lawn insect killer should you choose?

Lawn insect killers typically come in either liquid or granular form, but which is best for your needs?

The type of lawn insect killer you choose will depend on several critical factors, including:

The size of the area to be treated

The size of the area you wish to treat is a key thing to consider when deciding between liquid and granular lawn insect killers. If you need a product for ‘spot treatments’ (like anthills or other small areas with concentrated infestations), a granular product will probably be most suitable. If you want to treat your whole lawn, however, you may be better off using a liquid treatment.

This is because liquid treatments can be applied using a sprayer, making it easier to evenly distribute the product over large areas. Spreading granules over your whole lawn will be a lot more labor-intensive, and may even require the purchase of a spreader to ensure even coverage.

Foliage vs. lawn

If you want to treat a flat area, like turf or lawn, either type of product can be used with the same degree of effectiveness. If you want to tackle bugs in your flowerbeds, however, you will need to use a liquid product. This is because the product needs to coat the leaves and stems in order to work, and this effect can only be achieved by spraying.

Time and effort

If you want to treat your whole lawn, spraying a liquid insecticide is the quickest and most efficient way to get the job done. If you only require a spot treatment, however, then granules are going to be a lot less effort to use. This is because liquid insect lawn killers usually come in a concentrated formula that must be diluted with water, whereas granular products are often ready-to-use straight from the packet.

Safety considerations

If you plan to use a lawn insect killer at home, your need to consider the safety implications of using toxic products around children, pets and other members of your household.

Some insecticidal products contain harsh chemicals that are potentially hazardous to people and other wildlife species. If you want to play it safe, opt for a natural product that uses essential oils as its active ingredients. It’s also worth bearing in mind that a liquid spill is harder to contain and clean up than granules.

What are the active ingredients in lawn insect killers?

Chemical insecticides

Most insect lawn killers use potent insecticidal chemicals as their active ingredients. These may include one of more of the following:

  • Imidacloprid: Imidacloprid works by targeting the insect’s nervous system, which kills them quickly. It is a type of systemic insecticide, meaning it is taken up from the soil by plants which then express the chemical in their leaves and stems. Any bugs that nibble on the treated plants will die. Imidacloprid has limited toxicity in mammals, birds, and fish, so it’s unlikely to harm your pets. However, it is highly toxic to bees, which are vital pollinators in your garden and beyond.
  • Cyhalothrin: Cyhalothrin pesticides belong to a class of synthetic pesticides known as pyrethroids. These wide-spectrum insecticides kill on contact and will quickly eliminate every insect on your lawn (including bees). They are also highly toxic to mammals and aquatic critters and are also harmful to humans if swallowed or allowed to come into contact with the eyes or skin.
  • Cyfluthrin: Cyfluthrins are another type of pyrethroid insecticide and, like cyhalothrins, will kill pretty much everything they come into contact with. This potent neurotoxin not only affects insects but is also poisonous to mammals, fish, and other aquatic creatures. It is a non-specific pesticide and quickly kills most types of bugs (again, this includes bees). In terms of human health, cyfluthrin is very dangerous if accidentally swallowed. It can also have negative effects if inhaled, or if it gets on the skin or in the eyes.
  • Bifenthrin: Bifenthrin is also a neurotoxic pyrethroid insecticide that kills almost all bugs on contact. It is less toxic to mammals than it is to insects, but it can still cause skin, eye, gastrointestinal and respiratory irritation in humans. It may cause vomiting, diarrhea, tremors and drooling if swallowed by your pets, and is highly toxic to bees, fish and other aquatic creatures.
  • Cypermethrin: Cypermethrins are kill-on-contact synthetic insecticides that will wipe out every insect on your lawn. These pyrethroids are also toxic to humans, household pets, fish and a variety of other wildlife species.

Natural insecticides

If you want to take a more environmentally friendly approach to lawn insect control, there are a few natural products that may work.

They are less potent than chemical insecticides, so you may not see the same total insect annihilation as you would when using pyrethroids. However, they are safer to use around people and other animals.

  • Clove oil: Clove oil has been identified as an effective insect killer that is safer for use around people, animals, and bees. This 100% natural essential oil kills insects when it comes into contact with them, and may also continue to repel insects after application.
  • Thyme oil: Thyme oil is another type of insecticidal essential oil that may make a safer alternative to chemical insect lawn killers. Thyme oil kills a wide variety of insect pests but is less dangerous for bees, humans, and other animal species.

Keep in mind!

Please note that although essential oils are a lot less harmful to humans, wildlife and domestic animals than chemical insecticides, they may still be toxic to cats.

Are insect lawn killers safe for home use?

Insect lawn killers can be safe for home use, provided they are used with caution. Several types of insecticide are toxic to humans, domestic animals, and wildlife, and should always be applied according to instructions. People and pets should not be allowed to enter treated areas until the product has dried completely.

If the product gets on your skin, wash the affected areas immediately and thoroughly.

If you get the product in your eyes, flush the affected eye(s) thoroughly with clean, tepid water for 15-20 minutes. If you wear contact lenses, remove them after 5 minutes and continue to rinse the eye. If irritation persists, contact your doctor.

If you inhale the product, move to an area with fresh air. If you feel unwell, contact a doctor.

If you swallow the product, contact poison control. Many insecticidal products are highly toxic if ingested by people or animals.

How to use lawn insect killers?

How to use granular lawn insect killers

When using any kind of insect killer, the first thing you should do is check the directions on the label to find out the proper application rate. Once you know how much to use, apply an even layer of the granules to the affected area.

If you plan to treat your whole lawn, you will probably need to use a lawn spreader to ensure even coverage.

Once you’re done spreading, sweep any runaway granules off your sidewalks, patios, and driveways.

Finally, you will need to water the treated area thoroughly. Moisture helps to release the active ingredients in the granules, which will then seep into the ground and work their magic on your lawn insects. Wait for the treated area to dry completely before letting people and pets back onto your lawn.

How to use liquid lawn insect killers

Liquid insect lawn killers often come in a concentrated formula which must be diluted with water before use.

Always read the instructions on the label thoroughly to make sure you get the ratio right.

You will also need to buy a separate sprayer for application.

Many liquid lawn sprays come in bottles that are designed to have hoses attached and are ready to use. In this case, you can skip the dilution part and follow these steps to use the product:

  1. Shake the bottle well.
  2. Attach your hose to the designated port.
  3. Turn on the water.
  4. Open the safety lock at the top of the bottle.
  5. Start spraying.

When spraying your liquid lawn insect killer, make sure to do so with an even, side-to-side sweeping motion.

Spray the treatment area until it is thoroughly wet, and walk backwards towards the faucet while you do this. When you’re done spraying, turn the water off. Turn the spray switch back on to relieve pressure in the bottle.

As with granular treatments, you must wait until the treated area is completely dry before allowing people and pets to re-enter.

Tips and tricks for safe and effective use

Choose a suitable time of day

The best time of day to apply a lawn insect killer treatment is in the early morning or evening. If you apply the product in the middle of the day, it may evaporate in the sun which will make the treatment far less effective.

Take weather conditions into consideration

As mentioned above, applying your treatment under the blazing midday sun will cause it to evaporate before it has a chance to take effect.

Another weather condition that can sabotage your lawn insect-killing efforts is heavy rainfall, which will wash away the product before it can work. Therefore, the best time to apply a lawn insect killer is right after a heavy rainfall.

Mow the lawn first

Cutting the grass on your lawn before you apply your insect killer will give pest insects fewer places to hide. This ensures maximum contact of the product with your target pests and, therefore, more effective treatment.

Mowing the lawn before you apply your pesticide will also help to displace bees, butterflies, ladybugs, and other beneficial insect species so they aren’t harmed by the treatment.

Keep people and pets out of recently treated areas

Many insect lawn killers contain ingredients that are toxic to humans and animals, and which may cause skin and eye irritation. Always keep people and pets out of treated areas until the product has had a chance to dry.

Conclusion

Insect lawn killers can be a highly effective way to rid your yard of fleas, ticks, mosquitoes, and other nuisance pests this summer. Many contain potent insecticidal agents that kill bugs on contact and have lasting repellent effects, helping to protect you and your pets from potentially harmful bites and stings. Ridding your garden of nuisance bugs can also help to keep them out of your house, especially if you have a cat or dog that may carry fleas inside.

Insect lawn killers typically come in either liquid or granular form, and the type you choose will depend on the size of the area you need to treat. Liquid lawn insect killers are generally more suitable for whole lawn treatment, while granular products are better for spot applications. Chemical treatments dominate the market and kill a wide variety of insect species on contact. Unfortunately, they are often also highly toxic to non-target species like bees, fish, and mammals. While effective natural products do exist, they may not work quite as effectively and most contain essential oils, which may be harmful to cats.

Whichever type of lawn insect killer you choose, it’s important to always follow the product instructions to the letter. Always use the product as directed, avoid contact with the skin and eyes, and keep people and pets off your lawn until the treatment is complete.

1 Comments

J. Erickson

This article was very helpful. It provided me with many product options which appear safe for our situation. I will continue to refer to this article as we treat our lawn.

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