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fall armyworm – Spodoptera frugiperda

fall armyworm - Spodoptera frugiperda

The fall armyworm (Spodoptera frugiperda) is a moth species that, in its larval form, can feed on more than 80 plant species, but its preferred hosts are grasses, ranging from crops like corn and sorghum to turfgrasses such as Bermuda grass or St. Augustinegrass. St. Augustinegrass is one of the most common grasses planted in lawns in the southern United States, and a new study suggests that, while single St. Augustinegrass cultivar rises above the rest in resisting infestation, mixing varieties may confer some benefits, as fall armyworms clearly preferred single-cultivar plantings in a series of lab tests. (Photo credit: Matt Bertone, Ph.D.)

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