Category Archives: Current Events

Active Insects in Jacksonville

Staying on top of the active insects, termites and lawn diseases is The Critter Gitter’s Specialty.

As a family owned and operated business since 1954, Peninsular Pest Control prides itself on the team of bonded service professionals who provide customers with treatment for the thousands of pests who make a home in your home or business. Four Generations of homeowners have trusted Peninsular Pest Control for their solution to their pest problems partly because they work around your schedule, providing regular service on a monthly, quarterly or annual basis. Peninsular also offers a one-time service for special problems.

Peninsular Pest Control offers a full range of residential and commercial services including pest control, lawn maintenance (fertilization and weed control) as well as termite treatment (Termidor® and Sentricon®).

Roach Treatment in Jacksonville FL

Roach Treatment

Questions about Roach Treatment will be asked by most Florida homeowners at some point in their life. The weather stays relatively warm all year long, with the exception of one or two months, and the insect population really never does die off.

Roach Treatment
American cockroach

Cockroaches are a health hazard if they come in contact with humans or their food after they have been scouring unsanitary areas like sewage or septic systems. Even old trash or areas where garbage is stored can be a source of disease. They can carry salmonella into your kitchen, which can cause food poisoning and gastroenteritis. Cockroaches can also induce asthma attacks and cause pneumonia.

In our area there are four different species of cockroaches: American cockroach, German cockroach, Asian cockroach, Australian cockroach.

The University of Florida IFAS extension describes the cockroach life cycle as follows:

Life Cycle of the American Cockroach

The American cockroach has three life stages: the egg, a variable number of nymphal instars, and the adult. The life cycle from egg to adult averages about 600 days, and the adult life span may be another 400 days. The nymphs emerge from the egg case after about six to eight weeks and mature in about six to twelve months. Adults can live up to one year and an adult female will produce an average of 150 young in her lifetime. Environmental factors such as temperature and humidity affect the developmental time of the American cockroach. Outdoors, the female shows a preference for moist, concealed oviposition sites (Bell and Adiyodi 1981).

Pest Control Services

Our highly trained pest control technicians carefully treat both the structure’s interior and exterior to control pests through various methods of spraying, baiting and extermination.

Peninsular pest control programs work with you to rid your home or office of roaches, silverfish, spiders, ants (including carpenter ants), earwigs, centipedes, scorpions and rodents, to name a few.  We gladly work with your schedule to provide interior and exterior treatments on a quarterly or annual basis.

Professional Pest Control vs DIY

Are you a homeowner considering a do-it-yourself solution to your home’s pest issues? DIY pest control can work out alright if you deal with the problem immediately and regularly preventing an infestation. Professional pest control is the answer to these problems. Not sure if hiring a pro is right for your situation? This article will outline some of the remarkable benefits of professional pest control so you can make an informed decision.

Do It Yourself Pest Control
A do-it-yourself home owner spraying pesticide.

Professional Pest Control Saves Time and Money

Hiring a pest control company can save you time and money. Not only would you no longer have to worry about the problem, but you don’t have to take hours out of your busy schedule to eliminate pests. You also wouldn’t have to get yourself filthy and tired by doing your own pest control.

Professional Pest Control companies know what to do to prevent damage to a home. If you damage your home, you will need to pay for repairs, but a trained and experienced professional will be more precise and careful, saving you money in the long run. Moreover, DIY pest control solutions often require costly chemicals and pesticides, which also makes hiring a pro a cheaper option.

The Pros Have the Right Tools for the Job

Pest control professional
Having the right tools is important!

Professional pest control companies use the right tools and technology making the job more efficient and effective. Just like your experience in your field of work, pros know how to make a plan for every situation, so they don’t waste any time or materials.

Along with possessing tools, the pros would have access to the right pesticide for the type of pests you need to eliminate, which might not be available to you without a license or training. With their experience and knowledge, professionals will be able to deploy these pesticides carefully, keeping the people and animals in your home safe.

Professionals Are All About Keeping You Healthy

Some DIY pest control solutions will require using harmful pesticides and chemicals. Professional pest control companies are current on all safety and Green Practice standards. This is because, in many cases, the tools and techniques used by pros can be more effective than a pesticide. Overall, pros will use less harmful chemicals than if you were to handle this yourself.

Professionals Can Provide Long-Term Solutions

While DIY fixes focus on solving the current problem, they are usually ineffective at providing long-term solutions. Hiring a professional pest control company can change that. They will not only eliminate the current issue but will be able to prevent recurrences of the issue with the right tools and training.

Lastly, most pest control pros offer a guarantee on their work which will permanently solve the problem.

Pest Control Near Jacksonville, FL

Do these benefits of hiring a professional pest control company interest you?  Do you have pest issues at your home near Jacksonville Beach, Florida? The pros at Peninsular Pest Control are here to help. Get a free inspection and estimate by contacting us today!

Do it yourself this spring

Weeds you need to pull NOW!

Simply hiring a lawn care professional will not always solve your weed problems. Hand pulling weeds is also necessary. Here’s why:

There are three categories in the Jacksonville area:  Broadleaf, Sedges and Grassy.

weed pulling
Some weeds simply need to be hand pulled.

Many herbicides available today treat Broadleaf weeds. However, treating the grassy weeds and sedges would actually kill the grass itself. Environmental conditions make it difficult to control them. Therefore, vigilant lawn care is important. 

Selective herbicides will not control grassy weeds. Applying pre-emergent weed control will help suppress them but, it won’t control them. The only way to get grassy weeds out of your lawn is to pull them out or to kill the entire area and resod. Consequently, this is an important part of your Do It Yourself Lawn Care.

DIY Springtime Tips

With a rake, remove any dead grass or thatch. 

Secondly, add a layer of topsoil to help promote new growth. And, if needed use a post hole digger or spade to cut out healthy grass from other areas of your lawn to the areas that need grass.

Add fertilizer to the lawn to prepare for the green-up that is about to occur. The fertilizer application should include nitrogen and potassium to stimulate root growth. Additionally, water it in properly so the roots can absorb the nutrients but, don’t overwater because too much moisture will cause disease and encourages weed growth. 

Spring Lawn Preparation
Dull Blades can promote grass disease

Check your mower blade to make sure they are sharp. Dull mower blades cause an uneven cut which can lead to disease issues.  As a result, an even cut allows the grass to heal more easily.

Finally, test the pH level of your lawn because it will tell you which nutrients are lacking.

Best Lawn Care Company

Peninsular Pest Control is the Largest Family and Locally owned Pest Control Company in the Jacksonville area. Peninsular provides pest control services, termite control and lawn care (like aeration, fertilization, shrub care and insect treatment).

When is Termite Season?

While termites in Florida are often noticed during swarming activity it’s important to know that termite season and termite colonies are always active.  Proactive year-round treatment will reduce the potential for damage to your home and trees.  Prevention vs. Damage Repair will save money in the long run.

What does a termite look like 1
What do termites look like?

Homeowners often think that because they don’t see termites swarming in the air, that it’s not termite season. This is a HUGE mistake.  Termite colonies are active year-round and can enter a home from their subterranean colony at any time and do some serious damage.  This invasion often occurs without the awareness of the homeowner.

“The termite problem is changing in Florida. With some invasive species spreading, we are entering a new norm in terms of potential termite damage” said Thomas Chouvenc, an assistant professor of urban entomology at the UF/IFAS Fort Lauderdale Research and Education Center in Davie. Chouvenc specializes in termite biology and pest control. “Florida’s year-round, warm climate has allowed three invasive termite species to thrive, cause structural damage to our homes and property, while some species are now having a concerning impact on our urban tree canopy.”

It’s important to know that treatment for termites depends on which termite species is present.  Knowing which type of termite is invading your property determines the type of treatment that will be most effective.

“Monitoring for termite activity and damage is a critical first step to early detection and preventing damage to trees and houses.”, Chouvenc said. “There are currently two primary ways to protect a structure against subterranean termites: baits or liquid termiticides.”

Liquid termiticides like Termidor® is one alternative for treating termites.  A crucial advantage Termidor® has over many other products is that it doesn’t repel termites.

Termites are able to detect the older chemicals in the soil and stay away from them. That means the termites remain active and unaffected, still exploring the area and potentially looking for ways into your home.

Termites can’t detect Termidor® so, as they continue to forage through the soil, they unknowingly come into contact with Termidor®.  Termidor® kills termites through contact and ingestion.

Formosan Termites in Trees
Formosan Termites in old oak trees, Jacksonville FL

Another option for termite treatment is Bait.  Bait, if used properly, eliminates colonies which are able to feed on trees and property.  The Sentricon® Always Active Termite Elimination System uses bait stations installed around the parameter of the home

Sentricon® takes advantage of natural termite behavior. Worker termites constantly forage far and wide, looking for wood to feed their colony. When they find food, like the monitoring device in a Sentricon® bait station, they leave special scent trails to summon their nestmates to the food source.

Sentricon installation
Installation of the Sentricon® Always Active bait station.

This process is designed to kill the members of the colony, including the queen who is capable of laying millions of eggs in her lifetime.

In conclusion, whether you chose Termidor® or Sentricon®, year round termite monitoring and treatment is essential in the Northeast Florida area. The professionals at Peninsular Pest Control will inspect your home and make a recommendation as to the type of treatment that will be best suited to your particular situation.

Why is my grass dying?

Grass dying this time of year needs immediate attention.

Spraying yard
Is your Grass Dying?

Dying Grass could be caused by a few different reasons. Rich Jones, News Director for WOKV radio in Jacksonville, FL reaches out to George Richardson, Technical Director at Peninsular Pest Control, for answers

Mole Cricket can cause Dying Grass

Mole Crickets do the most damage from late August to early October. There is one generation of crickets per year, with eggs typically being laid in April and May. These creatures are nocturnal, which means they do their dirty work at night. If you have a street light anywhere near your front yard, mole crickets fly at night and they’re attracted to that light.

Soap Flush Test Instructions

An easy way to determine whether there are mole crickets in your yard is to mix 1.5 ounces of liquid dishwashing soap. like Dawn, into 2 gallons of water and sprinkle the mixture over 4 square feet of turf. If two to four crickets appear within three minutes of application, corrective action is justified.

Chinch Bugs can cause Dying Grass

According to the University of Florida IFAS/Extension:

Early damage appears as patchy areas of yellowing grass that rapidly browns and dies if the pest is left uncontrolled. The turf may initially appear to be drought stressed, which is a common misdiagnosis and allows damage to progress, often beyond repair. These patchily damaged areas are generally circular in shape and expand outward as the insects move from dying grass into healthier grass.

Turf in open sunny areas or under drought stress is often the first attacked and most severely damaged by southern chinch bug. This pest also prefers areas that have thick thatch layers because the thatch provides the insect with a place to feed and seek refuge from natural enemies and environmental conditions.

Peninsular Pest Control has been treating Jacksonville area lawns since 1954.

Angi Super Service Award

Peninsular Pest Control Earns 2021 Angi Super Service Award

Award reflects company’s consistent level of customer service

Angi Super Service Award 2021

Peninsular Pest Control is proud to announce that it has earned the home service industry’s coveted Angi Super Service Award (SSA). This award honors service professionals who have maintained high service ratings and reviews on Angi in 2021.

“These outstanding businesses have helped homeowners not only maintain their homes, but also evolve them into spaces that can handle life, work, school and entertainment under one roof,” said Bryan Ellis, senior executive at Angi. “Our homeowners’ consistent positive reviews make it clear: these are the top pros in our network. Congratulations to this year’s Super Service Award winners.”

Angi Super Service Award 2021 winners have met eligibility requirements. Pros on Angi qualify for the award by obtaining 3 or more services-performed reviews in the previous year, maintaining a current and lifetime GPA of at least 4+ stars. The SSA winners must be in good standing with Angi and have undergone our verification/screening.

“My parents, Earl and Louise Dixon, started the company in 1954 and our foundation was built on providing excellent customer service.”  said, Carolyn Richardson, President of Peninsular Pest Control.  “It’s nice to be recognized by Angi each year and we appreciate the loyalty of our customers who take time to submit the reviews.”

Peninsular Pest Control has been on Angi since 2010. This is the 11th   year that Peninsular Pest Control has received this honor.

Service company ratings are updated continually on Angi as new, verified consumer reviews are submitted. Companies are rated in multiple fields ranging from price to professionalism to punctuality.

For over two decades Angi has been a trusted name for connecting consumers to top-rated service professionals. Angi provides unique tools and support designed to improve the local service experience for both consumers and service professionals.

Problems with Sandy Soil

Newly Built Homes with Lawn Issues

Have you just moved into a newly built home and your grass is not looking as good as it should?   There is a reason.

New subdivisions are often created on top of existing sandy soil.  If no topsoil is added to the ground before the sod is installed, the grass will not thrive.  We all know grass needs nutrients to grow …but a healthy soil profile containing rich, organic matter is equally important. Just adding fertilizer to the lawn will not help… unless there is healthy soil below.

Soils that are gray or sandy colored generally contain less organic matter and you need to add topsoil. 

Top Dressing
Top Dressing will add nutrients to the sandy soil.

Don’t add too much at one time, make sure you can still see grass blades through the soil. This process is called top dressing and needs to be done every 3 to six months… until you see results.

Once your new turf is established, give us a call and we will gladly come out and recommend a lawn care program for you.

Erin Harlow, Horticulture Agent III at Columbia County Extension Office, wrote an article in the November/December 2021 issue of Pest Pro Magazine that addresses Florida soil and the amendments that can be made to improve the plant nutrition uptake.

Pest Pro Magazine image

Read the full article in Pest Pro Magazine.

Soils in Your Landscape

Soil is rarely uniform throughout a landscape. To understand the soil on your accounts, you should understand the common soil texture in your area, the amount of organic matter in the soil, the soil compaction or bulk density, and how all of these factors may influence the health of plants.

Soil is divided into three categories depending on the size of the particle: sand, silt or clay. The percentage of each in your soil will determine what type of soil is on your site. The composition of the soil also influences factors such as water retention and how it moves in your landscape.

Most Florida soil is sand, but the panhandle of Florida has more clay layers. The larger the particle size, the larger the pore space, which means that water can flow through these spaces faster. For your plants, this means that water may move out of the root zone quickly, requiring more supplemental irrigation.

Florida soils tend to have low organic matter — less than 4 percent. Organic matter plays a huge role in soil health. Improving the amount of organic matter in your soil can increase the potential for nutrient uptake by your plants (cation exchange capacity), increase the porosity of the soil, provide food for microbes, bind pollutants, and reduce compaction. Most labs that test for soil nutrients can test for organic matter, including the University of Florida Extension Soil Testing Laboratory Soil compaction is another factor that can influence plant health.


081387104 computer keyboard q
Ask the Critter Gitter

David S.

Jacksonville Beach, FL

I have noticed areas of my lawn are turning brown and appear to be dying? What do you think the problem is?

Customers often call the office for help with their dying lawn. They complain that areas of the yard are brown and look dried out.

George Richardson, Technical Director for Peninsular Pest Control, will show you how to simply check your lawn for drought damage.

The City of Jacksonville Environmental Quality Division reminds Duval County residents that as they set their clocks forward one hour on Sunday, March 13th for Daylight Savings Time, they may once again set lawn and landscape irrigation to no more than two days per week. Designed to conserve Jacksonville’s water supply and reduce the amount of nutrients flowing into the St. Johns River, Chapter 366 of the City’s Ordinance Code limits watering to two days a week during Daylight Savings Time

Residential properties with an address that ends in an odd number or places without an address may water on Wednesday and Saturday and those addresses which end in an even number may water on Thursday and Sunday.  Non-residential irrigation is only permitted on Tuesday and Friday.

Visit for more information including exceptions to the schedule, penalties and enforcement.

*An odd number address is a street address whereby the numeric part of the address is an odd number (103 John Doe Street) or the alpha-numeric part of the address ends with any of the letters N-Z (104-N John Doe Street).   

**An even number address is a street address whereby the numeric part of the address is an even number (108 John Doe Street) or the alpha-numeric part of the street address ends with any of the letters A-M (109A John Doe Street).

Caribbean Root Weevils

According the The University of Florida IFAS, this root weevil which is native to the Caribbean was first reported in Florida in 1964 from a nursery near Apopka. It was presumably introduced in an ornamental plant shipment from Puerto Rico. Since 1964, Diaprepes abbreviatus or Root Weevil, has spread over a large area of central and southern Florida where it is damaging to citrus, ornamental plants, and some other crops. It is estimated that Diaprepes abbreviatus causes about 70 million dollars in damage annually in Florida. Estimates show the weevil infests more than 100,000 acres of citrus.

Jacksonville, FL Weevil, spotted on November 11, 2021

These adult Florida weevils vary in length from 0.95 to 1.90 cm (3/8 to 3/4 inch). They are black, and overlaid by minute white, red orange, and/or yellow scales on the elytra (wing covers). These scales are often rubbed off of the tops of ridges on the elytra giving the appearance of black stripes on a light colored background. Adults emerging from pupae in the soil are armed with a pair of deciduous mandibles which break off as they tunnel through the soil to get above ground. Scars at the site where the deciduous mandibles break off are visible under a microscope.

Life Cycle of the Caribbean Root Weevil

A single Diaprepes abbreviatus female can lay up to 5,000 eggs in her three to four month long life. Eggs are laid in clusters of 30 to 265 and enclosed within leaves that have been folded and glued together, or within two leaves glued together. In seven to eight days the neonate larvae emerge from eggs, leave the cluster and fall off of the leaves onto the ground. The larvae then enter the soil and search for and feed on the roots. After feeding for several months, the mature larvae pupate in the soil. Adults emerge from the soil, seek a host and mate as conspecifics gather on the host. The complete life cycle varies in time depending on nutritional and environmental factors.

Although adults can emerge year round, their primary emergence period is May through October and November in central Florida. It is suspected that their seasonality in South Florida is quite different because of the similarity with the Caribbean, where it can be found throughout the year.

Adults do not fly far from the spot where they emerged from the soil (estimated to be less than 300 m). Therefore, long distance dispersal is through the movement of contaminated soil and containerized plants containing potentially all life stages of the weevil. In addition, soil residues on vehicles may be contaminated with larvae.

Adults do not fly far from the spot where they emerged from the soil (estimated to be less than 300 m). Therefore, long distance dispersal is through the movement of contaminated soil and containerized plants containing potentially all life stages of the weevil. In addition, soil residues on vehicles may be contaminated with larvae.

Damage Caused

Notching along the margins of young leaves is a telltale symptom of the presence of Diaprepes abbreviatus adults, or other related root weevils. However, other pests such as grasshoppers and caterpillars may produce similar damage. Therefore, it is best to look for a sign, such as the pest doing the damage. Look for Diaprepes abbreviatus adults during the day on the foliage. Shaking the plant may aid in detection as adults fall off of the plant onto the ground. A light colored piece of canvas placed beneath the plant before shaking is useful. Do not look immediately after a heavy rain, which usually knocks weevils off of the plant.

Learn more about insects that can damage your landscape under our LAWN CARE tab.

Thanks Neighbor!

The Critter Gitter is Loved by locals

The votes are in: neighbors voted you a 2021 Neighborhood Favorite. As the only local business awards voted on by neighbors, we’re happy to help your community officially recognize you as one of the best around.

Peninsular Pest Control is a NextDoor Favorite
Peninsular is recognized again!

Being a Neighborhood Favorite sets you up for success on Nextdoor by boosting neighbors’ trust in your business and the visibility you have on Nextdoor.