Does it really matter if I treat my lawn for Japanese Beetles? If the neighbors don't, won't they just fly over and start the process all over again?
This is a really great question and makes a great point! However, there are a few factors to take into consideration. Female Japanese Beetles are looking for just the right type of soil/turf to lay their eggs. She's looking for large areas of turf in full sun that is well watered, so basically anyone's dream, lush lawn. Not everyone has this type of environment. In a more developed neighborhood trees provide shade that creates a non-ideal habitat for her eggs. On the other hand, it's not realistic to say she will never lay her eggs in the shade, it's just not ideal. Also, having a lawn in the sun requires upkeep that some people don't have time for.
Another important factor is having plants that the Japanese Beetles love to feast on. There are over 300 species of plants that they enjoy, however not everyone has these in their yard or some are more affected than others.
With this said, not every yard is affected by Japanese Beetles and some are more affected by others, depending on your lawn and the species of plants you have in it. It's important to remember that while they are feasting on your plants they are also mating, and soon after the females will lay their eggs.
Did you know: The Japanese Beetle only lasts about 30 to 45 days.
So, should you treat your lawn for Japanese Beetles? It depends on how destructive the Japanese Beetles are in your yard. If you have plants that Japanese Beetles are most attracted like perennials such as American Linden trees, Apple or Crabapple trees, or Roses it would then be recommended to treat your lawn due to the size of these plants and the amount of beetles they can attract. Not to mention that they will most likely to be laying eggs in or near your lawn. If you are already heavily affected by Japanese Beetles with your annual plants maybe avoid: Hibiscus, Dahlia, Canna, and Zinnia and instead try Dusty Miller, Begonias, Coleus, and New Guinea Impatiens.