Now the weather has heated-up here in beautiful Sarasota, it not only means more days to spend on the white sand beaches and barbecuing on the grill, it means it’s time for an effective yard mosquito control system.
Why Mosquito Control is Necessary
There are several common problem pests for infestations around the house, but, one that’s most troublesome, and sometimes dangerous, is the mosquito. These annoying insects prey on people and pets alike, leaving itchy bite marks on the skin. The good news is, you don’t have to suffer again through the summer because there are effective DIY yard mosquito control options at your disposal.
Summertime means time for those pesky, disease-bearing mosquitoes and a fresh approach to getting a handle on natural mosquito control systems. Yes, systems, because it takes more than one earth-friendly method to manage mosquitoes and keep them from consuming people and pets. Some people prefer hiring an exterminator, but they can be expensive and they use toxic chemicals on lawns and flowers which may harm pets and people alike. Do-it-yourself mosquito exterminating with natural products will rid the garden of these pests and provide healthful mosquito control throughout the summer. —Natural News.com
While some will criticize DIY mosquito yard treatment alternatives, there’s really no way of completely eliminating these pests. This is because these small, midge-like flies are big in reproducing, with females laying between 100 and 300 eggs at a time, laying as many as 1,000 to 3,000 over the course of a lifetime. And, although the average lifespan is just 2 to 3 weeks long, when there are scores or hundreds of mosquitoes reproducing, that’s certainly enough to cause a big problem.
DIY Yard Mosquito Control
Another challenge with common yard mosquito control products is these do not often treat the conditions necessary for breeding. Like keeping pond predators away, it’s more about controlling the outdoor environment than combatting swarms head-on. In other words, it’s not enough to spray repellent onto the skin and/or into the air, because it will eventually evaporate. You need to take proactive steps for truly effective DIY yard mosquito control:
- Purchase a bat house. So, you’re probably thinking you’d rather not trade mosquitoes for bats, but, you’ll discover it’s a great swap to make. Mosquitoes come out to feed during dawn and dusk. Bats are nocturnal and also fly out to feed at the same time, particularly in the evening. Bats also feed on moths and other insects and help facilitate pollination, making them quite useful around you yard.
- Remove standing water. One of the biggest contributors to mosquito breeding is our own bad habits. We typically ignore standing water and it’s in this natural element mosquitoes breed and thrive. If there is standing water anywhere in your yard, you can bet mosquitoes are present and multiplying. Stagnant water is the largest culprit, but, practically any water, even very shallow, will attract mosquitoes.
- Keep yard grass cut short. Keeping the grass short in your yard is another way to fight mosquitoes. They can take refuge in tall grass and the taller grass, the more moisture is trapped, perfect conditions for those small, midge-like flies. A word of caution, don’t cut your yard too short or the grass will wither and die. Keep in mind, this is just one proactive steps you can take of several more for mosquito control.
- Remove any unnecessary items. There is probably one or more unnecessary items in your yard. It could be just about anything, including an old tire acting as a plant bed, a tarp, or another object. Anything that can retain water will attract mosquitoes. Also, be sure to keep gutters clean so mosquitoes don’t have another place to breed and hide.
- Tie tarps down as tight as possible. If you cover your grill, boat, or even firewood (though not so common in Florida), with a tarp, know this can be a prime breeding spot. This is because rainwater can pool on a tarp; so, ensure it’s tightened down to ward off mosquitoes.
- Treat your yard with insect repellent. Even if you use all the suggestions above, mosquitoes can still be somewhat problematic. Another step to take is to treat your yard with insect repellent yourself on a regular basis, following the manufacturer’s instructions.
In addition to these steps, you can also light citronella torches for added protection. Another trick you might try if you’re a person who “attracts” mosquitoes, is to place a clothes dryer sheet in your waistband. These contain benzyl acetate, benzyl alcohol, ethanol, limonene, and/or other chemicals. Dryer sheets have been proven effective in keeping gnats away, but, there’s plenty of anecdotal accounts these work with mosquitoes, too.