Pest Control Tips: Lawns & Landscaping
Landscape the Pests Away
While some pest infestations are simply a stroke of bad luck, smart landscaping can help steer pests away from your home, inside and out.
Remaining proactive about how, when and where to landscape is a major factor in pest prevention. Start now, and finish your summer with a healthy dose of backyard fun.
In Pest Control, Maintenance is Everything
A well-maintained lawn, garden, and home can keep your luck on the up-swing when it comes to pest infestations.
Here’s how you can get your yard under control.
- Weeds: We hate them but pests love them, so make sure you pull out any nasty weeds that are growing along or around the sides of your home.
- Lawn Care: The smell of freshly cut grass is reminiscent of warm weather and a pest-free property. Keep your lawn cut short and pests will have fewer places to hide.
- Mulching: Mulch is a pest’s best friend because it’s warm, moist and, often times, placed against your home. Don’t let pests get too comfortable: make sure you keep your mulch a safe distance from your home. About 18 inches is a good general rule of thumb, with a border of gravel around the interior.
- Clean Gutters: Clean your gutters! Just like mulch, gutters are warm, moist and cozy for pests so maintaining cleanly gutters is a necessity. Point downspouts away from your home. A key element in pest-controlled landscaping is making sure all drainage is pointing away from a structure.
- Standing Water: Clean your bird baths, decorative pools and flower pots often. Standing water is a surefire way to attract mosquitoes and other flying pests.
- Paint, Seal and Inspect: Keep your home freshly painted and sealed. Make it a point to inspect your home for any cracks or holes because these are access points for any curious pest.
Following these basic pest-prevention landscaping techniques can lead to a beautiful exterior and a pest-free interior. Your outdoor property can be that much more enjoyable through simple home-maintenance and upkeep.
To get more pest prevention tips, visit the Pest Resources section of our website.
Pesticides & DIY Methods
Blanket pesticide application has become the quick-fix norm for lawn maintenance and is most commonly done by homeowners who look for the “DIY option” at their local Home Depot or Lowes.
However, these methods rarely solve the problem and often make the situation worse.
We recently caught up with Northern New Jersey’s residential sales manager Sal Presti who recommends keeping up on your lawn care in order to ensure that the grounds around your house are pest free.
“Keep your lawn cut low and bushes and branches about 6-8 inches away from your house to protect against pests for the upcoming spring and summer seasons,” – Sal Presti, Northern New Jersey Residential Sales Manager
By pulling it away from the house about 10-12 inches and adding decorative stones against the foundation, it keeps those pests from causing damage and getting into cracks around your home.
Other landscaping tips include:
- Trim and prune: Make sure boxwoods are trimmed away from the house.
- Moisture & Airflow: Moist conditions are conducive to pests.
- Mulch wisely: It’s a nesting area for a variety of insects, and shouldn’t be more than a few inches deep.
- Watch what you’re planting: Some bushes attract aphids, which are a food source for ants.
- Exterior structure: While you’re out there, look for holes or damage that could allow pests into the home. Then fix them.
- Clean up after fruit trees: When crab apples or other fruit rots, it will attract pests like ants and flies.
- Dethatch that manicured lawn: Over-fertilizing can attract clover mites and millipedes. Heavy sod can also create mold and moss growth, attracting pests.
- Turn down the lights: Exterior lighting looks beautiful…to your neighbors and to pests. Light management controls pests such as spiders, flies, moths, millipedes, and more. Consider lighting poles away from the home rather than illuminating the house itself, or use yellow bug lights.”
It’s more than possible to maintain a beautiful landscape and a pest-free home.
Just remember to think about the pest habitats you may be creating before you plant.
Learn more about Western’s comprehensive Home Pest Control Plans.
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