VIRIDIS Lawn Care is here to help you identify nuisances to your home and garden and help you resolve the problem. Below we’ll address a tiny bug that goes by many names including sow bug, roly polly, and pill bug. They are those little bugs that have an armored looking shell and can roll into a tight ball when threatened.
Technically, these aren’t insects but isopods, relatives to crabs and lobsters. Because of this, they prefer wet or damp climates and can often be found in compost piles. This is actually their preference for food as well but if unavailable, they may begin feeding on flowers. They are helpful to decomposing materials and are generally an ok critter to have around but when they multiply into large colonies, they can cause minor problems around your home. They can feed on seedlings or new root shoots and even lower leaves of grown plants. Any fruits or vegetables on the ground can also attract their attention.
They may occasionally be found in the home but can’t cause any structural damage and usually don’t survive long indoors. They are also non-threatening to humans or animals as they don’t sting or bite.
While they don’t pose any real threat to your landscaping, they can cause minimal damage to some plants. In order to rid yourself of these pests, begin by reducing the areas they prefer to dwell, decaying matter, wet areas, rock gardens, and well shaded areas. Mulch with a coarser material. Trellis any vining plants to keep their fruit and flowers off the ground. Check for and repair any cracks found around your home to prevent them from entering and reduce the water found near entrances.
Often, these bugs are blamed for problems caused by insects who prefer similar climates. When in doubt of the creatures causing your problems, call the professionals at VIRIDIS Lawn Care of Salt Lake City to help you identify and remove the issue.