Creating a Mosquito-Free Zone in Your Backyard
General Pest Control
Creating a mosquito-free yard while maintaining a functional, yet, aesthetic outdoor space isn’t as hard as it might seem. The right combination of proper drainage, mosquito-repelling plants, and good airflow can mean all the difference in crafting a mosquito-loathing environment.
Consider these tips before you plan your backyard oasis…
Plant Smart. While beautiful, lush outdoor ornamentals may seem like the brilliant addition to your landscape design, plant smart to reduce insect populations around your yard. Mosquitoes love nothing more than a shady resting spot, typically on the undersides of leaves. Skip dense ground covers (like ivy and pachysandra) and quick-growing bargains that require lots of pruning. Opt for insect and mosquito-repelling herbs and plants like lemon balm, mint, bee balm, rosemary, lemon verbena, and pennyroyal. Your landscape design will also benefit from the movement of butterflies and hummingbirds that you’ll now attract!
Reduce Moisture. Ever notice how many more bugs you find in cool, damp environments? The same goes for mosquitoes. Mosquitoes beat the heat just like you do…by taking refuge in cool, shaded areas around your yard. Your threat of being bitten by mosquitoes is enhanced by providing opportunistic females with a suitable place to breed—larvae thriving in as little as a cup of stagnant water. Small ponds and water gardens may complete your quest for calm, but without a doubt will invite a host of undesired insects straight to your back door. If water features are a must-have on your quest for a Zen-like yard experience, maintain water gardens and ponds with moving water and fish (koi, goldfish) to keep the mosquito larvae to a minimum.
Increase the Flow of Air. Proper spacing to allow air to circulate around plants and structures is an integral part of your successful design. Not only will this help plants (and the soil around them) to dry out between watering and reduce your chances of plant-loving fungal infections, but it also reduces pest problems (i.e. less moisture=less bugs). You can also install ceiling fans on porches, under pagodas, and on covered patios, although you may need to maintain fans on their highest speed for you to notice much of a difference in the volume of bite-seeking mosquitoes that you see. Your best bet is to reduce overcrowding between plants and limit the amount of places that mosquitoes like to rest.
When in Doubt, Mist Them Out. Repelling mosquitoes isn’t rocket science, but it does take some know-how to get the job done safely and effectively. For homeowners who have no interest in doing it themselves, our licensed mosquito control professionals will use a combination of long-lasting repellent materials in conjunction with insect growth regulators, and biological larvicides—geek speak for getting the job done so that you can enjoy your yard again! Contact us to learn more about mosquito and tick control from American Pest.
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