How to Win the War Against Mosquitoes
Because let's face it, mosquitoes bite
Summer is great…until the mosquitoes start biting, at which point, all bets are off. Mosquitoes are more than just an itchy nuisance; they also carry diseases and viruses that can cause serious harm to humans and animals. Pesticides are just one part of the solution. Successfully keeping these pests at bay requires a multi-pronged approach.
Don’t Stand for Standing Water
Standing water is a mosquito breeding ground. Remain vigilant by ensuring proper drainage within your landscape. Your landscape partner can help you ensure there are no depressions where water can pool. If you have a pond on your property, utilize an electric aeration pump or fountain to keep water moving.
Further, consider man-made objects where water can stagnate, such as fountains, birdbaths, flowerpot saucers, wheelbarrows, and trash cans. These should be emptied and scrubbed weekly to prevent mosquito eggs from attaching inside.
Put Your Landscape on the Defensive
Some plants emit smells that naturally deter mosquitoes, but have an aroma and appearance that’s pleasing to humans. Thankfully, many of these plants are common and readily available. If you guessed citronella grass is one such option, you would be correct. But did you also know lavender, scented geraniums, marigolds, and herbs, such as sage, basil, mint, and rosemary, are deterrents, too? Ask your landscape partner to incorporate them into flower beds and containers where people gather.
Don’t Let Mosquitoes Take Cover
Mosquitoes love the cover dense or overgrown landscape provides. Keep your landscape tidy so they have nowhere to hide. This means staying on top of weed control, fallen leaves, and keeping long grasses and shrubs trimmed. Patio areas and entrances are of particular concern, since mosquitoes go where the people are. If you have dense landscape near either of these, your landscape partner can suggest cost-effective, yet attractive plant material swaps to lower your mosquito risk. You may even be able to incorporate some of the mosquito-deterring plants listed above for a one-two punch.
Make these tips a consistent part of your landscape management and pest prevention plans, and mosquitoes will surely get the message: it’s time to buzz off.
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