How to Make the Most of Your Fall Garden

Looking for ways to spruce up your garden this season? You’re in luck, because fall is a great time to plant some beautiful flowers and delicious vegetables. Even if you don’t necessarily have a green thumb, you can still make your garden something to be proud of. Read on for some Mosquito Authority-approved tips on how to make the most of your fall garden:

Flowers to plant:

  • Chrysanthemums: Chrysanthemums come in a variety of colors perfect for fall, such as red, yellow, orange, and pink. Simply make sure you plant these flowers at least six weeks before any extreme cold weather, so they can have time to establish roots.
  • Aster: If you want to add some cool colors to your autumn garden, plant some aster. Aster is a perennial plant that grows in many different colors like purple and blue. Nectar from an aster plant is also a great food source for butterflies and bees!
  • Sweet Alyssum: Sweet alyssum isn’t just for decoration; it also has a pleasantly sweet scent. Flowering in shades of white, pink, purple, yellow, and peach, sweet alyssum grows along the ground to create a flowery carpet of color.
  • Black-Eyed Susan: Black-eyed susans are another flower that will brighten up your autumn garden. These golden blooms look beautiful next to any flower and are a favorite food source of bees and butterflies.

Vegetables to plant:

  • Beets: Beets are a great fall vegetable that should be planted about 8-10 weeks before the first winter frost. If you follow this timeline, you should be able to harvest your beets in time for the holidays.
  • Carrots: Carrots are not only a great source of nutrition, but they also add some color to your garden. These veggies come in a variety of colors including white, purple, crimson, and yellow. Carrots should be planted about 6-8 inches apart with 5-8 seeds per inch.
  • Broccoli: Broccoli that grows during the cold weather actually tastes sweeter than when grown any other time of the year. If you’re planning on growing broccoli this year, plant this crop about 85-100 days before the first frost.
  • Onions: Onions are another crop that come in numerous forms and colors. Depending on your region, certain onions may do better than others. Onions should be planted 2-4 weeks before the first frost of the year.

There are plenty of other flowers and vegetables that can thrive in the cooler weather, so make the most of your fall garden this year by trying some of them out!

Preventing Mosquito Bites Around Your Home

In an article for 360 Magazine, Mosquito Authority Chief Science Officer Dr. Craig Stoops outlines three ways to prevent mosquito bites around your home.

The first way to limit mosquito exposure is source reduction. Because many mosquito species prefer to breed and lay their eggs in standing water, they often congregate around things like bird baths and discarded items around the yard. To avoid this, Dr. Stoops recommends “emptying and cleaning bird baths and discarding items that can hold water” to reduce the mosquito population near your house.

Dr. Stoops also highlights the importance of using EPA-approved mosquito repellents. Dr. Stoops highly recommends using repellents containing DEET and lists other options for repellents such as picaridin, IR3535, and lemongrass oil.

Dr. Stoops’ last recommendation for preventing mosquito bites is to hire a professional mosquito control service. According to Dr. Stoops, “Pest control operators specifically trained in identifying the mosquitoes in your yard and recommending an integrated control program can be a great way to provide season-long relief from mosquito bites.” When choosing a mosquito control company, it is important to hire certified professionals who are experts in their field.
For the full article and more information on preventing mosquito bites around your home, click here.

Family Health and Fitness Day

Saturday, September 26th is Family Health and Fitness Day, so here are some ways to make the most of it.

Family Health and Fitness Day is intended to promote both physical health and fitness among families in the United States. Observed on the last Saturday of September, Family Health and Fitness Day encourages families and their loved ones to implement healthy habits and activities in their daily lives. This day was established by the Health and Information Resource Center in 1996 in order to promote a healthy family lifestyle for Americans.

At Mosquito Authority, we love to promote the health and wellbeing of our customers, so we came up with some suggestions for how you can make the most of Family Health and Fitness Day.

1. Go on a hike

Exercise is an important part of the day, so why not enjoy it? Hiking not only benefits your health but it also gives you the opportunity to get some fresh air and appreciate the outdoors. Just be sure to wear mosquito repellent and check for ticks after hiking in the woods.

2.  Play a sport as a family

Because of COVID-19 your kids might not be able to enjoy their favorite sports like they used to. However, that doesn’t mean playing sports is out of the question. Organize a family game, whether it is football, basketball, soccer, etc., and get the whole family outside for some fun (and friendly) competition.    

3. Go for a family bike ride

Biking is a tried-and-true family activity. Whether you are biking on a trail or just going for a ride through the neighborhood, this is a great way to keep your family active. Not only is it good for fitness, but exercising outside provides a nice break from those indoor workouts.

3. Come up with a weekly meal plan

Planning your meals at the beginning of the week saves time and also allows you to make intentional food choices. By taking the time each week to meal-plan, you can form healthy eating habits for your family and take the stress out of last-minute dinner plans!

4. Know your family health history

Educating yourself on family health history is crucial. By being aware of your family medical history, you can reduce your risk of developing health problems in the future. 

5. Go for daily walks

Sometimes a simple walk is the best way to exercise as a family. In fact, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends that adults 18-64 years old should walk for at least 150 minutes every week (that’s roughly 22 minutes per day). 

Family Health and Fitness Day is a great time to spend time with your family and recognize the importance of physical health. To make sure your backyard is a safe space to spend some time getting active, schedule a mosquito treatment with us today.

Foods That Attract Pests

Here are some of the foods that are most attractive to pests, from fruits and veggies to sugary drinks.

Pests are annoying enough without them getting into our food. Unfortunately, there are a lot of foods in our daily diets that can draw pests into our homes. Here are a few of the most attractive foods for pests and some tips for reducing your chance of having to deal with them. 

1. Any type of fruit and/or vegetable

You have most likely seen fruit flies hovering around the fruit bowl on your counter or a bunch of bananas you left out overnight. Fruit flies are probably the most infamous type of household pest, and also the most bothersome. However, there is a simple way to minimize your fruit fly problem: avoid leaving fruits and vegetables uncovered in your kitchen.

2. Crumbs

It’s pretty much impossible to avoid crumbs inside your home. Whether you are making dinner or grabbing a breakfast bar, there’s bound to be a few crumbs that end up on your counter and/or floor. However, these little bits of food can attract certain pests such as ants and cockroaches, so it’s important to always clean up any crumbs around your house. 

3. Sugary drinks

Juice, soda, and other types of sugary drinks are all extremely attractive to pests, specifically wasps and bees. If you are enjoying a nice day outside with a cool soda in hand, make sure to clean up any spills and be on the lookout for wasps. These stinging insects love high fructose corn syrup, the main ingredient in soda, so you’re likely to get some unwanted attention with a sugary drink by your side. 

4.  Sugary foods

Soda and juice are not the only sugary substances that attract pests. Ants love to get into all kinds of sugary foods such as candy, jam, and cookies. If you are planning an outdoor barbeque with some sweets or making s’ mores by the fire, keep an eye out for hungry ants.

5. Peanut butter

Speaking of ants, they don’t always go for the sweet snacks. In fact, some ants are more attracted to salty foods as opposed to sweet. Because it is a food high in protein and fat, peanut butter is an appealing option for ants in search of a meal. 

6. Alcohol

Alcohol is another beverage that entices pests such as fruit flies and beetles. If you are having a glass of wine, remember to put the cork back in the bottle. As with sodas and juices, make sure to clean up any spills immediately to avoid attracting any bugs.

Now that you know which foods can attract pests, you hopefully have a better idea of how to make sure your kitchen and/or outdoor space stay pest-free. For more information on dealing with pests, check out our other blogs and stay up-to-date with us!

Mosquito Authority’s tips on how to have a bug-free barbeque

Summer might be coming to an end, but barbeque season is still going strong! In fact, with the weather cooling down in September, this might just be the best time to fire up the grill and enjoy your backyard. 

There is just one problem: how do you stop mosquitoes from ruining your outdoor dinner plans? That’s where Mosquito Authority comes in. We want you to enjoy your backyard to the fullest, so here are some Mosquito Authority-approved tips for having a bug-free barbeque this season:

1.  Set out some citronella candles

While citronella is not 100% effective in staving off mosquitoes, it can still help. Try setting out some citronella candles or torches around your backyard area if you are planning on hosting a gathering.

 2. Wear light-colored clothing

It might sound odd, but people wearing dark clothing are actually at a higher risk for mosquito bites than those wearing lighter clothes. Avoid being a target for mosquitoes in search of a meal by wearing light-colored clothing during an outdoor event. 

3. Use a fan

Another strategy for keeping mosquitoes from ruining your backyard barbeque is to put one or two fans in your outdoor space. There are two reasons why fans can help deter mosquitoes, one of them being that mosquitoes are weak fliers, so a strong fan can keep them from getting to you. The other reason is that mosquitoes are enticed by the lactic acid from human sweat, so by cooling you down, fans also make you less attractive to these pests. 

4. Remove any standing water from your yard

Mosquitoes love standing water, so make sure you don’t have any puddles or places where water could build up in your yard. If you have any birdbaths, be sure to change out the water frequently in order to avoid mosquitoes on the day or night of your barbeque.

5. Cover your trash cans and get rid of any trash as soon as possible

Leftover food and beverages in trash cans attract all sorts of bugs, so it’s important to keep your outdoor trash cans covered. In addition, using a lid avoids any water from getting in your trash can, which can help deter mosquitoes.

6.  Schedule your BBQ for early afternoon

We’ve all had a nice night or two ruined by the presence of mosquitoes. Since these pests are most active during dusk, we recommend scheduling your barbeque early in the afternoon to avoid being bitten by mosquitoes.

7. Eat outside, but serve the food inside

Try serving your meal inside in order to keep the majority of the food away from hungry pests. This way, you and your guests can still enjoy eating outdoors without constantly worrying if bugs have gotten into the food.

8. Call Mosquito Authority

At Mosquito Authority, our primary focus is ensuring you and your family’s safety and helping you enjoy your outdoor space without the presence of mosquitoes. To ensure that your next barbeque or outdoor event is mosquito-free, schedule a treatment with us today.