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roaches in the mulch

Discussion in 'Pesticide & Herbicide Application' started by bamaturf, May 7, 2013.

  1. bamaturf

    bamaturf LawnSite Member
    from alabama
    Messages: 136

    Got a customer that found a roach in her house, but it was dead on its back.
    She really hates & is scared of roaches. The inside pest guy says that the roaches are living in the mulch so she wants to replace mulch with gravel or rocks. I would rather spray something to kill the roaches instead. I googled the subject & got some info, made some phone calls & got more info. I am going
    to use permethrin . I know people that have success with boric acid. I do have
    OTPS spray license.
    Question is this , does anybody have ideas how to get rid of the potential roaches in the mulch?
    thanks in advance
  2. Think Green

    Think Green LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,746

    I would want to know from the exterminator what kind of roach was found. Was it a wood roach, German, American, or banded?
    I really get flared up from pest guys.......and I am one myself on the outside. However, since pests do and can live in mulches, it isn't uncommon at all.
    I don't feel that the mulch is the real problem, though if the customer wants rocks installed, it will cost for removal of current mulch, pick up and delivery of said rocks, installation and cleanup. This isn't cheap in my standards as I did a renovation two weeks ago with standard wash rock in shrubbery beds. 4 cu.yds. Not fun to do with shovels and good wheel barrows.

    Talstar(Bifenethrin) is what I use for exterior pest control. Read the label for your own judgement on rate per certain pest of target.

    I would suggest getting used to the interior pest controllers making your job tough........or it can make your job profitable.

    This kind of reminds me of a competitor in the irrigation business. He tells my customers that the problems with irrigation head damage is from mower abuse. There is some truth to his information, but the remainder isn't always the common factor, such as squirrels, sand, mud and tiny pebbles.
    In the case of roaches and other insects reaching the mulch, I would refrain from advising the customer that no matter what other types of mulches, rocks, needles,etc. insects will always find refuse in these things.

    Oh--if roaches is bad chances is there is another cause other than the mulch. Snoop around the lawn and see.
  3. DLCS

    DLCS LawnSite Platinum Member
    Messages: 4,386

    Ok first off, I'm not an exerminator but have dealt with this problem for a few summers due to a filthy neighbor who had a German roach problem. First and foremost find out what kind of roach it is cause the "water bug" type is common in mulch and damp areas but is real easy to kill. If its a German roach, look for the dark lines on the adults or the white stripe on the forhead of the nymphs, its going to be tougher and chances are its a much bigger problem. Likely coming from a neighbor or another building cause the prefer indoors. We used to treat our mulch with Talstar granuals and it helped. But if they are german and coming from some other structure, then nothing is going to keep them out of the house. But first thing is you must find out the type of roach.
  4. Colaguy

    Colaguy LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 599

    "The inside pest guy says that the roaches are living in the mulch so she wants to replace mulch with gravel or rocks. I would rather spray something to kill the roaches instead."

    The pest control guy should be spraying the outside as well as inside. "One" roach and the lady panics? Lol people get so silly sometimes. Use generic Bifen IT. Its cheaper than rock & replacing mulch with rock, Isnt going to stop roaches either.
  5. Kiril

    Kiril LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 18,334

    What do you do with pests that live in the soil .... remove the soil? How about the roaches that live under rocks? I've lifted many a rock/paver to find dozens of roaches living under them.
  6. pestman01

    pestman01 LawnSite Member
    from NC
    Messages: 7

    Probably a smoky brown roach, may be a wood roach. Niban would be the best thing to use. it's a granular easy to apply.
  7. Ric

    Ric LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 11,969

    Roaches are sometimes called Water bugs and love moisture more than Mulch. Removing Mulch is not going to solve the problem. I agree with Kiril.

    I am a Full Book CPO meaning I can even tent a building and Fumigate it for Dry wood Termites or Bed Bugs. Tell the Inside Pest Control guy to do his job and not blame organic mulch for his inability to do a professional job. Or better yet Tell your customer to HIRE A REAL PROFESSIONAL.


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