Pests are just the worst, they hover around you, and ruin your dinner parties and barbeques when all you want them to do is leave you alone for five minutes. Of course, we’re talking about bugs, although the similarity could be drawn for choice characters at certain events too. Regardless of the outdoor event, bugs can quickly ruin the experience as you dip, duck, dive, and dodge mosquitoes, wasps, and other insects. So how do you keep them from taking over your yard and claiming it as their own? Well, porch screens are one way, but read on to find out more.
Although it can take a big chunk out of your day to clean your patio or backyard, it’s worth it if you want to keep it free of pests. Sugary food and drink waste in particular attracts wasps (although you’ll also get ants joining in on the party soon enough as well). If you know there’s going to be a lot of sweet food and drinks for your backyard plans and just can’t avoid it, here’s a quick tip. Try setting up a small plate of the sugary goodness in an area of the yard away from your activities to attract the bugs there. That way you can enjoy the food and the bugs can too, just not near you or the guests you want to impress.
So you’ve cleaned up your backyard, but you’ve still got all this waste. Plus, there’s a lot, and it’s piling over the edge of your garbage can. By just leaving it in that state, even if you bag it up, leaving it out won’t stop bugs from trying to get to the delicious meal inside (for them, obviously garbage is gross). Make sure to bag food and drink waste and put it into a sealed garbage can so you can keep insects from having any sort of second breakfast, lunch, dinner, or even midnight snack.
Got a patio space you want unhindered by pests? Custom screens. What about a porch or patio that you want to be locked down from insects? Screen it in. You can even install some retractable door screens to keep out bugs while still allowing for easy access in and out of your home. As a side benefit, you can enjoy the benefits of better climate control using screens. You’ll also get the added bonus of keeping your screened-in areas cleaner and give yourself some extra privacy. And we might just know a vendor you could go to get said screens (hint: their business starts with “Phantom”).
This may seem counterintuitive, but stay with us. “Wouldn’t a fan just blow bugs directly toward my summer bod that I’m trying to keep bug-free?” Well partly yes, but mainly no. You might blow a few insects toward you, but one of the main draws of mosquitoes is carbon dioxide, lactic acid, and sweat. So by setting up a fan, you blow away those weak fliers into a less populated area of your yard, and blow away the smell of those chemicals, leaving you bug-free.
Wasps are territorial creatures, just like people and their favourite place to sit and relax. However, unlike people, wasps will ignore an area if they notice their own kind has already set up there. What does this mean for you? You can set up fake nests in your yard to give the illusion the mean little jerks are already living there. This being said, people have had mixed results when it comes to these fake nest illusions. One tried and true method are these bag traps. Make sure to watch their effectiveness though since, depending on the number of wasps in your area, you might need to replace them somewhat frequently. However, the best part of these particular traps is that they only attract wasps, you don’t have to worry about trapping bees or other important critters. Just make sure to put the traps in an area of your yard away from people.
Mosquitos need stagnant water to lay eggs, so not dealing with puddles is just asking for a double-booked party in your backyard: the one you’re putting on, and the one the mosquitos have planned. Trust us, the mosquito party will outlast yours. Obviously, if you have a backyard pond, this is harder to manage. Either add some mosquito dunks or bits to the pond or consider investing in fish that prey on mosquitos and mosquito eggs. For puddles, and even areas water can accumulate like tires or flower pot trays, make sure to dump out the water and dry out puddles.
Keeping pests out of your backyard on the days that matter can be challenging since, that’s where a lot of them tend to make their home. You’ll likely be dealing with wasps and mosquitoes as the biggest bug problems in the Okanagan. However, by following the tips above you can prevent them from ruining your dinner party that was months in the making.