Do you want to get rid of those pesky mosquitoes in your yard?
Mosquitoes ruin the best yard parties, birthdays, and gatherings. However, it’s not just bites and scratches that annoy us.
Diseases that are spread to us by mosquitoes today in Texas include the Zika virus, West Nile virus, Chikungunya virus, dengue, and malaria.
Overall, illnesses from mosquitoes, tick, and flea bites have tripled in the country between 2004 and 2016.
Also, we shouldn’t forget allergic reactions. Although most of us will have some form of response to a mosquito bite, there is also Skeeter syndrome.
Skeeter syndrome means a significant allergic reaction to mosquito bites. People with this syndrome are very sensitive to these bites and may even develop a fever. Bites are very painful to them too.
Unfortunately, mosquito populations exist throughout Texas. There are about 85 species of mosquitoes found in Texas. Some species are known to be disease vectors (carriers).
Texas has a list of the most dense Mosquito areas:
- Dallas-Ft. Worth, Texas
- New York
- Washington, D.C.
- St. Louis, Mo.
- Miami-Ft. Lauderdale, Fla.
- Kansas City, Mo.
- Charlotte, N.C.
Why are You having problems with mosquitoes in Your yard?
The most common reason could be stagnant water. All mosquitoes have one mutual requirement – they need stagnant or standing water to complete their life cycle.
Mosquitoes are attracted to zones where they can find standing water. It is where females lay their eggs, and they then hatch, allowing larvae to develop into adults.
Places to inspect for stagnant water:
- Ornamental ponds
- Gutters (clogged or uneven that does not quickly eliminate the water)
- Corrugated downspout extensions
- Planters and pots
- Areas around the property that puddle after a rain
- Open trash cans or buckets
- Drainage ditches
- Wading pools
- Children toys
- Water that has collected in containers
- Anything that always holds water in Your yard after a rain
What to do if You do have stagnant water in Your yard?
You need to use a siphon pump to let the water flow in the pond or swimming pool. You also should treat your pools with chemicals that can repel mosquitoes.
In other areas of stagnant water, just simply sprinkle the used coffee grounds. This will deprive the larvae of oxygen, which will lead to its death.
You can also place bowls of coffee grounds around to discourage the mosquitoes from staying. Aside from that, you can use the grounds as fertilizer after rinsing it well.
How is the mosquito problem being dealt with at the state level?
Action has been taken. However, the dramatic intervention is also a dangerous option.
The chemicals called organophosphates and especially malathion remain in the arsenals of some Texas communities.
33 organophosphate pesticides have been banned in the E.U. In the United States, their use from 2006 to 2016 dropped by 50%.
Dropped, but still being used. It kills insects by preventing their nervous systems from working correctly. They pose significant health dangers.
Malathion is extremely toxic to bees and other beneficial insects. Marine life and fish can also be affected. World Health Organization classified malathion in 2015 as ‘probably carcinogenic to humans’.
How to repel mosquitoes in the yard?
You don’t need to invest in chemical repellents. There are home remedies that include essential oils and plants.
Essential oils to repel Mosquitoes
There are many recipes of essential oils that help get rid of mosquitoes. And they are not a myth.
For example, In a 1995 field study, a 2% Neem oil mixed in coconut oil provided 96-100% protection from mosquitoes. Of course, You can run to the shop and buy essential oil spray, or You can make it Your own. It would make sure that You get the right strength and amount of essential oils to work.
Here are the best ingredients to choose from:
- Clove Essential Oil Is One Of The Most Potent Oils. When tested and compared with the other 38 other essential oils, clove essential oil proved to have the most extended duration of repellency.
- Lemon Eucalyptus Oil. A 2014 study found that a formula containing 32% lemon eucalyptus oil provided at least 95% protection for 3 hours.
- Cinnamon Oil. Anethole, Cinnamyl Acetate, Cinnamaldehyde, and Eugenol are the four components present in the cinnamon oil. They have the strongest mosquito repelling properties against the Aedes Aegypti mosquito.
- Peppermint Essential Oil
- Catnip Essential Oil
- Tea Tree Essential Oil
- Bergamot Essential Oil
- Lemongrass Essential Oil
- Lavender Essential Oil
- Citronella Essential oil
Here is a recipe for a very effective Mosquitoes Spray:
- 30 drops citronella essential oil
- 20 drops clove oil
- 20 crops catnip oil
- 20 drops lemon eucalyptus essential oil
- 20 drops lavender essential oil
- 10 drops rosemary essential oil
- 1 TBSP rubbing alcohol
- ½ cup natural witch hazel water
- ½ cup water (or vinegar)
How to ensure the effectiveness of essential oils mixture?
Shake before each use. The oils and water will naturally separate over time. Use a glass bottle for this mixture. Amber bottles or those dark blue bottles are recommended to protect the effectiveness of the oil.
So How do You maximize the power of essential oils?
You can use essential oils with different methods.
First, use a glass bottle to spray around the lawn.
Secondly, use the mixture with candles in the evening.
Thirdly, soak ribbons in oils mentioned above. Soak some ribbons in the mixture of oils and hang them around windows and doors to prevent any entry by mosquitoes.
Fourthly, burn some incense. Go for ones that contain effective components like citronella, eucalyptus, and cloves.
If You have kids, make sure You get the Essential Oil Kids Diffuser Bracelet.
Grow plants that repel mosquitoes
If the spray is not enough and You want to protect a much larger area, then You will need to grow specific plants.
This is a starting good list of plants that work to repel the mosquitoes:
- Catnip. It contains an essential oil nepetalactone. Studies conducted by Iowa State University found that nepetalactone is10 times more effective at repelling mosquitoes than DEET. It is the main ingredient in most commercially available insect repellents.
- Lemon-scented plants. There is a wide range, including lemon verbena, citronella grass, lemongrass, lemon balm.
- Rose Geranium
- Scented geranium
- Mint family plants, including (but not limited to) peppermint, spearmint, stone root
- Cloves. If you aren’t interested in budding the plant itself, clove buds and oil are easily found in stores and online and can be used to help with your mosquito problem.
- Ageratum, also commonly known as Flossflowers
- Bee Balm or Wild Bergamot, this attractive plant is tolerant of almost every soil type depending upon the variety. Late summer blooms not only repels mosquitoes. The best part is they also attract butterflies, hummingbirds, and bees.
- Pitcher Plant. The pitcher plant doesn’t precisely repel mosquitoes, but it will digest the occasional mosquito.
There is a choice, and You can plan Your landscape accordingly.
How to use the power of plants to fight mosquitoes?
Don’t plant them around the area. Instead, make mosquito planter pots. Protect the most often used areas of your yard with planter pots. First, choose a couple of the plants mentioned above and create container plantings. Then place them by the entry doors, by your grill, by the pool, and on the deck.
Try experimenting with several home remedies, and You will find something that genuinely works.
Other rarely seen helpful advice that helps with fighting mosquitoes.
- Mosquitoes are sensitive to color. Wearing white or yellow undertones will help You. Always avoid wearing dark colors like navy and black to keep mosquitoes from sucking your blood.
- Mosquitoes are attracted to carbon dioxide. So consuming alcohol causes your body to emit CO2 and increases the bacterial composition of your skin. This, in turn, attracts mosquitoes. Try to limit your alcohol consumption.
- Even food You eat could help avoid mosquito bites. Garlic and onions emit a compound called allicin through your pores once You eat them. This disturbs your natural scent. Mosquitoes do not like the aroma of any vinegar. So if You want them to steer clear, then you can consume the right amount of vinegar.
- Check what light do You have in Your yard. Replace your outdoor lights with yellow “bug” lights, which tend to attract fewer insects than ordinary lights.
- Get a powerful Fan. Fan breeze also helps keep mosquitoes away. The reason is simple. Mosquitoes are attracted to carbon dioxide. Fan wind from a decent fan disperses and dilutes.
- Dry Ice. The carbon dioxide we exhale attracts mosquitoes, that’s why we are quite vulnerable to them. Dry ice emits carbon dioxide. So how to use it? All you have to do is place some dry ice in a container and keep that container some distance away. When you see mosquitoes attracted to the container, close the lid. Dry ice is not natural to have shipped to you, so we recommend looking for it locally.
- Use a dryer sheet. Dryer sheets contain two chemicals that keep mosquitoes away. First one is linalool, which is toxic to some types of insects, and beta-citronellol, which is found in citronella—already mentioned repellent. So here is Your action plan: keep one in your pocket, then rub one on your arms and any other exposed skin.
What about the Mosquito Trapping Systems?
You can also use machines that generate heat and carbon dioxide to lure mosquitoes, trap, and kill them.
Mosquitoes can ruin a lot of activities. If home remedies do not work, You can trust Zodega to use simple inspections for breeding grounds and have a residential pest control service in place to help get rid of mosquitoes and protect your family and friends from bites and diseases.