When you have a lawn, you expect it to be a safe, comfy place for all your outdoor activities. Whether it’s exercising, playing with your kids and pets, or having a barbecue, doing all of these and more in your yard should be a breeze.
However, you and your family are not the only ones who want to spend plenty of time on your lawn. Your outdoor space can also attract certain creatures that you don’t want near you and your home: pests.
Lawn care pros in Mason, Ohio say that whether you like it or not, you will have to share your yard with some bugs and animals. Although some of them are helpful, such as bees that pollinate flowers and spiders that keep mosquitoes at bay, certain types can be harmful to you, your family and your plants.
Small and large pests can also make your yard an unpleasant place to be. Moreover, they can easily undo all the hard work you put into making it an appealing, conducive, and safe space for your family.
Keeping Pests Away From Your Lawn
Maintaining a safe, family-friendly outdoor space free of pests is possible, regardless of the types you have to deal with. You can do this by following these tips:
1. Keep your lawn clean.
Bugs are attracted to tall grasses and fallen or dried leaves. Ticks, for instance, like hiding in them as they wait for a passing animal or human to cling to. Ants and harmful spiders can be found lurking in these areas, too.
If you want to keep these pests away from your yard, mow your turf regularly. Rake your lawn frequently as well.
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In case you want to use the fallen leaves and grass clippings as mulch, collect and put them in a large container with a lid and apply them when you are ready to do so. Avoid keeping them in a pile on your lawn.
Additionally, make sure your lawn is free of decomposing plants and animal waste since they can attract flies, ants, rats, and other pests. This means cleaning up after your pets as soon as possible and removing dead or dying plants, including rotting tree stumps.
Lastly, garbage bins often provide a breeding ground for flies. Ants also tend to feast on the sticky residue left in cans, bottles, and other food containers. As such, make sure all your trash and recycling cans are always covered. Clean them regularly, too.
2. Keep possible entryways of pests away from your house.
Having pests on your lawn can already be a huge problem; allowing them entry to your home can become an even more difficult issue to deal with.
Ensure bushes or tree limbs do not touch any part of your house as well since they can provide access for ants and other pests that will enter your home. If you are using mulch, keep it at least 12 inches away from your house’s foundation.
If you keep firewood outdoors, make sure you avoid stacking them against your house or shed. Termites will live in and use them to start damaging your home. Moreover, rodents can hide and make their nests in this spot.
To stack firewood safely, keep them off the ground and away from your home.
3. Remove sources of standing water.
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Mosquitoes are some of the most annoying insects you will find on your lawn. Unfortunately, they can be more than just irritating; they can transmit various diseases, which include dengue, encephalitis, and the Zika virus.
You can keep mosquitoes away from your lawn by getting rid of or fixing areas that contain standing water. These can include neglected birdbaths and water features or an unused swimming pool.
If you don’t want to remove your birdbath or water feature, make sure you clean them and keep the water moving regularly. Maintain your swimming pool and cover it completely if no one will use it.
Also, look for hidden sources of standing water. These can include toys left outdoors and the folds of grill covers.
Additionally, inspect your lawn for low spots that may have damp areas or turn into puddles that do not drain after a day or two after a rainfall. Fill these spots with topsoil to level and prevent them from collecting water again.
4. Mulch appropriately.
Mulching offers several benefits to your lawn. However, applying too much or too little can cause you problems.
Too much mulch can give ants and cockroaches shelter and breeding ground. When they start to decompose, they can even attract more pests, which can include rodents.
To avoid this, apply only one to two inches of fine mulch. Use a rake to spread it properly.
However, don’t leave your ground bare since yellow jackets tunnel into bare dirt to make their nests. If you don’t want to use organic mulch, opt for inorganic ones such as rock or gravel.
5. Grow plants that repel harmful bugs.
Certain plants give off scents that can naturally repel harmful insects. Examples of these are basil, catnip, citronella, lavender, marigold, and rosemary.
These plants can drive away flies, fleas, mosquitoes, cockroaches, and ticks.
Herbs such as basil, garlic chives, and parsley can attract beneficial insects that prey on pests. As such, consider growing them around your lawn as well.
Make sure you plant them strategically so that they can make your outdoor space more attractive and work best for repelling harmful insects or attracting the useful ones.
6. Block off pests.
Lastly, if your home does not have a fence, consider investing in one now. This barrier helps prevent deer and other larger pests from wandering into your lawn and ruining it.
Additionally, you can protect your plants from pests by raising the garden beds. The brick, concrete blocks, or stones make it harder for bugs to get to your foliage. To prevent burrowing animals from ruining them, add a mesh bottom under each bed.
If you want to give your raised beds additional protection, consider surrounding them with a wire fence.
Keeping a pest-free outdoor space that stays safe and attractive requires plenty of planning and work. If you don’t have the time to do all of them properly, get help from trusted lawn care service providers in Fairfield, Ohio.