Susceptibility of Genera and Cultivars of Turfgrass to Southern Chinch Bug Blissus Insularis (Hemiptera: Blissidae)

James A. Reinert, Ambika Chandra, M. C. Engelke


The southern chinch bug (Blissus insularis Barber) is the most damaging insect pest of St. Augustinegrass (Stenotaphrum secundatum Walt. Kuntze), across the southern U.S.A. Susceptibility to the southern chinch bug and reproductive potential of the bugs on 24 cultivars from 7 genera in 8 turfgrasses were evaluated under greenhouse conditions. Stenotaphrum secundatum (‘Raleigh’, ‘Texas Common’, and ‘Captiva’) cultivars were the most susceptible among all the turfgrass genera and each produced populations ≥97.5 bugs per 15-cm diameter plant within the 11-week test period from Jul to Sep 2008. Substantial populations also developed on zoysiagrass (Zoysia spp.) ('Emerald', 'Empire', 'Palisades', and 'Zorro') cultivars and on '609' buffalograss (Buchloë dactyloides (Nutt.) Engelm.). Low population development was recorded on cultivars of bermudagrass (Cynodon spp.), centipedegrass (Eremochloa ophiuroides (Munro) Hack.), seashore paspalum (Paspalum vaginatum Swartz), bahiagrass (Paspalum notatum Flugge), and tall fescue (Festuca arundinacea Schreb.).

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