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my two front lawns are bald, due to worms, there are a few sparse patches that they haven't destroyed, but the rest of it is just mud full of holes, i know they aerate the lawn but its ruined, do i re seed it or leave it any advice would be appreciated as it looks awful. .



What made you think it was worms springfield? I've never known worms to cause something like that. Unfortunately  I can't get a clear enough picture when I enlarge. Can you give us more info about the conditions?


Was this lawn treated with anything last autumn?  Weed and feed or something like that?  

It looks to me as if what grass is still alive is in sort of regular lines, as if there may have been over-application of something using a mechanical spreader 

because f the immense wetness this winter i have had to re do the lawn edge, on doing this there was lots and lots of worms coming out big fat horrible ones, (which i collected up and gave to the chooks)  i did put an autumn lawn feed on around end august beginning september, it was one that comes with a spreading spout on it. there are a lot of small holes in the mud, before it got that bad there was also a lot of worm casts couldnt sweep them off ans it was too wet.


what do you think it could be thats caused this, what do you recommend i should do?


Not sure what to suggest yet, but a few questions : Does the grass get a lot of sun or is it a shady aspect?  Does the grass get a lot of traffic - is it very compacted? Did you notice lots of crows/magpies pecking at it in autumn ? They would be looking for leatherjackets and can pull out loads of 'handfuls' of grass and moss when they do it which get left in clumps on the surface.  I've seen lawns look dreadful because of them.

More likely to be leatherjackets worms dont cause damage to lawns, they just leave casts.

I'd spike it give it good rake with a sprake, then re seed next month. Treat the ground with nematodes specifically for leatherjackets which you water in. It looks to have been laid as turf, the leatherjackets were probably in the turf and were imported when it was laid.

If it was new turf, I'd complain to the supplier of the turf.


The worms were coming out because they were drowning in the wetness - as you say they aerate the soil - they also help to drain it - the chooks were very lucky, but next time, leave the worms where they are or put them in the flowerbeds - they are your friends. 

It still looks to me as if that grass has been scorched by something.

the garden is south facing so gets plenty of sun all day (when we have it) no one walks on it apart from me when mowing the grass, its very soft now and squelchy,havnt noticed any birds on it,the grass was lovely when we bought the house three years ago, so i dont know if turf was laid before then. nematodes are those flying spidery things are they? the eggs of those?

just looked up leatherjackets, we did get a hell of a lot of craneflys in the autumn, had to keep the doors and windows closed there was so many, do you have any leatherjacket treatments you can recommend or know of please?

My penny worth.   I suspect leatherjackets and chafers....they did the damage in autumn.

However, I also feel Dove is right .....too wet and the worms are coming to the surface.    They aren't the reason for bare or dead areas.  You would also see worm casts.  

When it dries out a little I would spike and rake the "lawn" order to create a fine tilth for re seeding in early April.  A scattering of fertiliser after spiking and raking would not be a bad thing either.

For next year I would consider nematodes to control leatherjackets and chafers in late summer

whe would be the best time to put in a leatherjacket treatment?


Sounds like the leatherjackets may be part of the problem but I'd agree with Verdun that they wouldn't cause big bare  patches - it usually just looks messy - and it does seem that the ground's compacted if it's very soggy. I'd say since there's no obvious wear and tear from other sources that Dove may be on the right lines with chemical damage of some kind, so Verdun's advice for some spring attention is worth following. My front grass is very soggy too - like many other people's - and I won't do anything to it till it's dried out a fair bit.

Probably around July if the rain doesn't stop soon!


the only thing ive used on the lawn was autumn lawn feed at the end of the summer. i think its leatherjackets as we were inundated with crane fly's last autumn so i suspect its them, thanks to everybody for your input and advice, ill get on it as soon as the weather improves and ill let you know how i get on. cheers


Springfield says that an autumn lawn feed was applied end of August/beginning of September.  It was very dry and warm here then - was that feed properly watered in?Otherwise it will have scorched the grass. 

yes i put the sprinkler on it so it was watered in well.

Springfield, You won't get further damage now until next August at the earliest (from leatherjackets  etc) so that's when you would apply nematodes.

Until this year I've used lawn grub killer to great effect.  Now this product is banned so nematodes is only solution.  

a healthy lawn?? really? all i put on it last autumn was a autumn lawn feed. thats all. i have ordered some nemotodes from nemotodes direct, i am to put on a double dose in spring and then a single dose again in august/sept/oct time, as for there being no further damage i can see the little buggers wriggling about so theyre still alive and neighbour is also going to treat hers even though she has no leatherjackets yet, but once my lawn is treated the craneflys might start to look elsewhere to lay their eggs in the autumn so she is pre treating it just in case they target hers.