Eliminating Mosquitoes From Lawn and Garden
Hanging out on the lawn isn’t any fun when you have to fight off those pesky mosquitoes every day. Thankfully, there are several ways to keep them to at bay! There is no end-all cure for mosquitoes, but using these techniques will reduce the population significantly so you can enjoy your lawn and garden areas.
How to Prevent Mosquitoes?
- Monitor, reduce or remove standing water
- Apply larvicides in ponds, fountains, rain barrels, etc
- Keep pools clean and chlorinated
- Clean up the yard and garden areas
- Trim trees, shrubs, and bushes regularly
- Clean your rain gutters to avoid standing water
- Install a bat house
- Spray the lawn and garden areas
Monitor, Reduce, or Avoid Standing Water
Mosquitoes lay their eggs in water and standing water sources are their favorite. Mosquitoes don’t need a lot of water, 1/2″ is enough, so be vigilant about all the places water can gather around your property.
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Bird baths, frog ponds, rain gutters, and pet bowls are just a few places mosquitoes will lay eggs. Smaller sites, like birdbaths, should be emptied frequently to deter the mosquitoes. Mosquito eggs hatch in 48 hours so be sure to drain and refill all water containers in that time frame. Cover containers and bowls with lids to keep the mosquitoes out.
Don’t forget to check the edges and folds of grill covers and tarps. Check children’s toys, flower pots, and wheelbarrows. It is amazing all the places water can gather and become a beacon for nesting mosquitoes.
Apply Larvicides Where Mosquitoes May Lay Eggs
Larger sites, like ponds, fountains, and rain barrels will need to be treated with larvicide. Larvicide (larvacide) is an insecticide that targets the larval life stage of insects, mostly mosquitoes. Larvicide is available as liquid, granular, pellets, and tablets. Larvicide will stop the mosquito larvae from reaching maturity.
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The larvicide you need will depend a lot on the area you are treating so read the labels carefully. Larvicides are not dangerous chemicals and if used according to the label they do not harm humans, pets, or the environment.
Keep Pools Clean and Chlorinated
If you have a pool, keep it chlorinated, so the mosquitoes aren’t attracted. Cover it when not in use and drain it in the off-season. Clean pool covers that collect water.
Clean Up The Yard and Garden Areas
Adult mosquitoes find shelter in yard debris, unmown grass, and bushes. They love old tires that collect rainwater as well as provide shelter. Old tires are heaven to mosquitoes! Remove any items around the yard that can collect water and don’t need to be outside.
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Trim Trees, Shrubs, and Bushes
Mow the lawn, trim shrubs, bushes, and trees, so they get more sun exposure. This deters mosquitoes since they like cool, damp areas. Remove any old leaf piles as they will use these are a replacement to standing water.
Clean Rain Gutters and Storm Drains
Another favorite place for mosquitoes is gutters and storm drains that haven’t been cleaned out. Water will gather there and provides the perfect mosquito breeding ground. Clean out all the gutters, downspouts, and storm drains to eliminate this possibility.
Welcome The Bats
Bats love eating mosquitoes! Install a bat house or two and see if you can encourage these helpful creatures to make your property their home. They can eat 1,200 insects every hour and between 6-8,000 insects per night. They are one of the best insect controls, and they work for free!
Spray The Lawn and Garden Areas
Garden centers carry a wide variety of insecticides that can be sprayed on the lawn and garden areas to kill mosquitoes. They should be used sparingly since many will also kill all other insects, like bees and ladybugs. Spraying can be done every month for terrible mosquito infestations.
Sprays usually contain Pyrethrin or Pyrethroid. Pyrethrin is an organic compound made from dried Chrysanthemum that is used as an insecticide. A Pyrethroid is the synthetic version of Pyrethrin.
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Pyrethrin is considered a safer non-toxic choice; however, Pyrethroid is generally considered more effective.
When to spray insecticide for mosquitoes?
Plan the spraying for the early morning or late evening when the bees and butterflies are least active.
Where to spray insecticide for mosquitoes?
Spray in the locations mosquitoes are most likely to be present or to visit. During the heat of the day, they hide out in cooler spots like under bushes, trees, decks, in tall grass, and other shady areas. Concentrate spraying there for the most effective results. Mosquitoes hang out on the underside of leaves so be sure to spray there and not the tops. Choose a spray designed for the area you are treating.
In areas where mosquitoes are especially prevalent, an insect growth regulator can be sprayed to sterilize mosquitoes and make the eggs nonviable.