With the arrival of summer, most people are looking forward to long, sunny days, warm temperatures, and backyard get-togethers with family and friends. Unfortunately, mosquitoes are looking forward to your parties, too.
While applying toxic chemicals directly to your skin to keep the mosquitoes from feasting on you is the average person's idea of keeping the disease-carrying predators at bay, it's really not the best—or only—available method of managing them.
The skin is the human body's largest organ, and whatever you put on your skin is absorbed into the rest of your body. When you look at it that way, slathering yourself in bug dope suddenly sounds far less appealing. What is the answer to keeping your outdoor living areas mosquito-free? Here's what you need to know.
Get Rid Of Standing Water
Mosquitoes lay their eggs in stagnant rather than moving water. Algae-filled ponds are ideal, but they're not picky. While backyard birdbaths are enjoyable to watch the birds splash, they're also the perfect breeding ground for mosquitoes. Your children's kiddie pool, the recycling bin, an empty beer can, or forgotten flower pot saucers filled with rain water are also all ideal spots for incubating a fresh batch of mosquitoes.
Plant Mosquito Deterrents
Some plants, particularly those with strong odors, will keep the mosquitoes away. Citronella isn't just a chemical in commercial bug sprays and Tiki light fuel; it is derived from the citronella plant. Lavender, marigolds, catnip and other mints like peppermint, garlic, and herbs like rosemary and basil can all be planted around the perimeter of your most-used outdoor areas, creating a living mosquito-free zone.
Citronella candles and lanterns are also good options, and as an added bonus they will add a little extra light and ambiance to evening gatherings. Sprigs of rosemary can also be set on the grate over your fire pit to provide immediate protection around the bonfire.
Hang Bird And Bat Houses Around The Perimeter Of Your Yard
You may have to deprive your feathery friends of a quick splash in the birdbath at the height of the summer heat, but you can still provide them a home. Swallows, purple martins, and other song birds as well as bats all require a steady diet of mosquitoes.
Call An Exterminator
Many people are surprised to learn exterminators do more than just get rid of bed bugs and mice. A professional exterminator will come and assess your needs and determine a plan of action to keep your yard free of these flying ectoparasites. You can visit sites like http://www.paffyspestcontrol.com/.