The key to effective pest control is sensible pest control. At The Pest Force, we use an approach called Integrated Pest Management (IPM). This approach is a combination of techniques for reducing resources pests need to survive (food, water, shelter and ways to get into your home) and using pesticides as minimally as possible. This sensible approach prevents the build-up of pesticides in your home and in areas around your home. We can also use natural pesticides instead of chemical pesticides for a more environmentally-sound approach to pest management. Let’s take a look at some of the non-pesticide elements of IPM for fall:
Fall Yard Clean-Up and Pest Management
Cleaning up your yard, gardens, gutters and a few other spots can vastly reduce places pests like to hide or can use to access your home. Let’s take a look at the essentials of yard maintenance to keep pests away:
- Clean gutters and downspouts, ensure there are no blockages and the end of the downspout is far enough away from home and doesn’t cause water buildup.
- Collect and dispose of leaves in yard and garden, as well as branches, pine straw, old mulch, debris and any trash.
- Trim trees, shrubs and bushes back away from home. Pay particular attention to tree branches that touch or are close to the roof line.
- Clear debris and trash from under decks, power wash deck and after dry, apply weather-proofing to prevent growth of mold and mildew.
- Aerate your lawn and till your garden. This allows for better water absorption (prevents standing water) and allows nutrients to get down further into the soil where it can nourish your lawn and garden for a good start in the spring. Remember to remove old dead plants from your garden before you till it – dead and decaying plants are attractive to pests.
- Check around the outside of the home for entry points pests can use to enter your home and seal them appropriately. Some examples include space around spigots, cracks or openings around doors and windows, loose roofing tiles and space between your gutter and roofing.
- Drain hoses and outdoor water lines, including sprinkler systems and winterize to avoid a water line break that could cause standing water or make pests seek shelter in your home.
This list helps you prevent pests by removing resources they use to access your home or that provide them with food, water or shelter. When you avoid attracting pests from the beginning, it helps keep the use of pesticides to a minimum in only targeted areas as needed. And if you need assistance will any of the tasks on this list, we have a Sensible Services Division you can hire to help out.