Got little dirt mounds sitting on your lawn? And you are wondering where they come from or what’s building these little dirt castles? Continue reading for an in-depth understanding of what causes small dirt mounds in lawn.
The presence of mysterious dirt mounds in your lawn can be challenging and frustrating, even to the most experienced lawn owner. Even so, not all dirt mounds in your lawn suggest a major problem.
Some lawn intruders simply flip the soil to freshen it, while others can and have the potential of causing serious lawn damage.
Dirt mounds in your lawn can vary in size, from small and inconspicuous to large and hideous. Identifying the culprit or what is causing the dirt mounds will come in handy in determining the best way to get rid of mounds in your yard.
Let’s have a look at what causes small dirt mounds in your lawn?
What Causes Small Dirt Mounds In Your Lawn?
When dealing with small dirt mounds, the most common culprit is usually the earthworms. However, there are other culprits such as moles, voles, ants, termites, and black beetle. Ok, let’s have a look at them one by one.
Earthworms Funneling Through Our Lawn Soil
In many instances, when small mounds appear on your lawn, earthworms are usually the main suspects. Though the mounds may give your lawn an unpleasant look, earthworms are traditionally very beneficial to your lawn soil.
In reality, the existence of earthworms in your lawn signifies a healthy lawn: – a lawn that is in harmony with nature. Yes, it’s true; earthworms will ruin the lovely look of your lawn by building tiny mounds, resulting in coarse lawn.
On the other hand, these worm-like actually aid your yard by flipping and aerating the lawn soil.
Earthworms make small dirt mounds as they move across the soil while dropping feces on your lawn soil surface. These droppings that are high in organic minerals serve as lawn manure.
During mild temperatures and dump conditions in spring and fall, lawn owners will experience a rise in earthworm dirt mounds.
Note: Generally speaking, earthworms do not cause any lawn damage unless, of course, they are in large numbers: a full-blown colony.
With earthworms out of the way, let’s have a look at other culprits that leave small dirt mounds on your lawn.
Burrowing pests are some animals that give lawn owners and landscapers sleepless nights. Gophers voles and moles burrow through your soil and create mounds at the beginning of their tunnel networks.
Though moles are much smaller than gophers, their lawn damaging habits are legendary. They form dirt mounds as they burrow and dig tunnels below the ground surface. In their quest for food, burrowing pests can riddle your lawn with holes and dirt mounds.
They can instantly turn your lawn into an ocean of mounded dirt. Here are some indicators that will aid in identifying mole mounds.
What about insects? Do they build small dirt mounds on your lawn? What a good question! And yes, some insects do leave dirt mounds on your yard. Let’s have a look at what insects cause dirt mounds?
What Insect Causes Dirt Mounds?
Ants In Your Grass Lawn
One question that usually pops up whenever mysterious mounds of dirt appear in people’s yards, especially after heavy rain, is what did this? What insect caused this? And as always, the usual culprit is usually the ant, to be precise, the fire ant.
Based on how long they go unnoticed. Ant mounds can quickly grow in large numbers and occupy almost the whole lawn. Typically ant mounds are usually a few inches tall and difficult to notice until you have a full-blown infestation.
Here are a few signs that will assist you in identifying ant mounds.
- The mound’s shape is irregular.
- The mound has no visible entrance holes, either on the side or in the middle.
- The mound has a fluffy and smooth texture.
- Most of the time, they will emerge after heavy rains.
Even though ant mounds can be unpleasant to the eye, ants generally help keep pests at bay. They prey on lawn damaging insects and pose no danger to grass. They only become a nuisance when they start building those eye soaring mounds on your lawn.
African Black Beetle
Also known as the black lawn beetle, the African beetle does most of its damage during its larva stage of life. From early spring to late mid falk, black lawn beetles usually unleash their terror on lawns.
They tunnel beneath the soil, looking for chewy grassroots and immature shoots and, in the process, creating dirt mounds on your lawn.
These beetles frequently burrow back and forth the lawn’s surface, leaving behind dirt mounds. Since the larva hides deep underground away from the average insecticide reach, they can be challenging to deal with.
How To Get Rid Of Mounds In Your Yard
Little dirt mounds can be a tripping challenge as they destroy the charm and the beautiful look of any well-kept lawn. The best way of getting rid of dirt mounds is first dealing with the creatures that create them.
Yes, chemicals effectively eliminate both burrowing pests and insects, but you will also destroy other beneficial soil creatures in the process.
The safest way to treat and prevent burrowing pests from accessing your lawn is by eliminating the food source or making the place inhabitable. To control ants, you need to aerate the soil and spread a thin layer of soil over the lawn during the nesting season.
After eliminating the mound builders you can rake down the mound dirt and use the mound dirt to fill any visible holes. Spread the remaining mound dirt over your lawn. If the grass underneath the mound is healthy, it will spring up in no time. But if it’s yellowish and weak, you need to repair your lawn.
Note: until you are sure which mound pest you are dealing with, proceed with caution. Ants will bite you if they feel you are disturbing them.
While there is no permanent fix for this problem, raking up small mounds is a routine aspect of getting rid of mounds in your lawn. Lawns with a lot of grass litter (thatch) easily attract intruders such as earthworms and moles. So it’s important to take better care of your lawn to minimize the number of mounds created.