Summer is just around the corner, and it is the perfect time to start preparing for outdoor gatherings as warmer weather calls for picnics, barbecues, and fire pit gatherings. However, with warmer weather comes the nuisance of mosquitos and other bugs.
Be the perfect host or hostess and create a comfortable outdoor escape for your guests so that everyone can enjoy your deck, patio, or yard. No one likes to be bothered with pesky flying and crawling critters. Take a look at how to keep bugs from your outdoor area so you and your guests can enjoy a pleasant pest-free experience.
Keep it Natural
Keep insects and bugs at bay by adding plants, which act as natural insect and bug repellents. A few of the most used repellant plants in outdoor areas include lemon balm, lavender, basil, marigolds, lemongrass, rosemary, chamomile, citronella, and tea tree.
Not only do these plants act as a deterrent for mosquitos and other pests, but also they add beautiful flowers and greenery. The majority of plants and flowers that serve as natural repellants also smell fantastic while simultaneously masking the scents that attract insects and bugs. You can plant these natural repellants in small pots and put them in areas where you will be gathering, or you can place these plants strategically around your yard to provide year-round protection from bugs and mosquitos.
Often, the best décor is functional décor. A great way to keep bugs away and your guests cool is to incorporate fans. The wings of mosquitos and other flying insects aren’t equipped to stand up to fan-produced breezes.
Keep the fans blowing in the direction of your outdoor area to blow the flying pests out of the space, and be sure to choose fans that are appropriate for outdoor use. An oscillating or box fan should do the trick without the need to install any equipment. If you want to get really stylish and have enough space, you can opt for a ceiling fan which looks luxurious on covered patios and gazebos.
Eliminate Standing Water
Stagnate water is a breeding ground for mosquitoes. It’s where they mate and lay their eggs. To help eliminate these pests, take a look at your outdoor areas and make sure to identify and eliminate all sources of standing water. Try searching for some of the most common standing water magnets such as ponds, birdbaths, pools, flowerpots, and more. Once you locate the water drain or move it. This could be as simple as pouring out a container or mopping up with a towel.
Just because you’ve cleared standing water once doesn’t mean the problem is solved for good. Be sure to inspect your yard for standing water and refresh water features regularly.
Candles and Tiki Torches
Candles and tiki torches not only help create a relaxing ambiance but also help ward off mosquitos and bugs. Citronella candles and tiki torches are particularly potent with their citrus-like scent, which repels mosquitos and other pesky bugs.
Citronella is a leafy plant that comes from the lemongrass family, and citronella oil, which is produced from the leaves and stems of the citronella plant, has been used as an insect repellent since 1948. This non-toxic, natural insect repellent has proven to be effective for prolonged amounts of times. Other effective, naturally scented candles include rosemary, lemon balm, lemongrass, and orange.
Canopies and Netting for Comfort
Canopies and netting are the perfect addition to any outdoor space, if you are looking to add a bit of class and elegance to your gathering spot. In addition to the added beauty, you and your guests will be protected from annoying insects and bugs. Mosquito netting and materials suitable for outdoor usage can be found at your local craft or hardware stores, and are easy to set up. To really keep mosquitos and pest out of your space, attach side panels, which will also provide shade and shelter from the rain and other elements.
Wood Burning Fire Pits
Insects do not like smoke. It makes it difficult for them to move and breath. A fire pit can be an effective way of keeping away unwanted pest by adding an amount of smoke that they can’t tolerate. Not every fire pit will do the job, however, some outdoor fire pits are gas burning and do not emit smoke. This means gas burning fire pits are not effective in keeping bothersome bugs at bay.
Instead, opt for wood and charcoal burning fire pits to deter bugs and insects. Not only do wood burning units add a better atmosphere, they also emit wonderful smoky scents, which insects and bugs dislike. Always make sure to take the proper precautions when using a fire pit and, if it’s wood burning, make sure the proper ventilation is in place.