Photo source: Graduate University of the Chinese Academy of Sciences.
It feels like only yesterday that it was winter (technically it was two weeks ago, but never mind), and spring is in full bloom. We can actually start referring to it as an early summer as the jump in temperature has been quite phenomenal… This has now got my hypochondriac self thinking. Pests breed during the warmer seasons, so; if it’s already this warm mid-September, then it means that pests will breed and frolic much sooner, so I will have to live with them – or should I say suffer with them – in my space for a while longer… The agony. The annoyance. The possibility of many insect bites and flying and crawling insects invading my home. The joys.
I especially hate mosquitoes. They are the most infuriating insects to fly – and walk – the face of the earth. Just as I am about to doze off, there they are, energetically performing some sort of ‘buzz-off’ right in my ear… And don’t think if you switch the lights on you will be able to find them either. They quickly take cover, until the lights go off again… I have had many sleepless nights, trying to kill mosquitoes that attack me in my very own bedroom. And it doesn’t stop there, they leave their mark too. The itching and scratching of the mosquito bites almost drives me as crazy as their high pitched, monotonous whining.
So with this in mind, I decided to stop being a negative nancy and do some research in formulating a mosquito control plan. This is war!
Tips on how to get rid of mosquitoes:
1. Build a mosquito trap: As mosquitoes are attracted to carbon dioxide, a good way to lure them away is by building a mosquito trap containing a sugar and yeast blend. The best way to do this is to cut the top of a 2 litre soda bottle off, turn it upside down and place it inside the bottle, so that it resembles a funnel. Mix together a cup of sugar and a cup of water, and a teaspoon of yeast. Bring one cup of water to the boil and combine with the sugary mixture. Pour this down the ‘funnel’ you have created and seal the two parts of the bottle with tape – and viola! A homemade mosquito trap.
It is recommended to leave this contraption in a dark and humid area for at least 2 weeks and then to replace the concoction with a fresh batch every 2 weeks as well. (This I have to try!)
2. DIY Mosquito Repellent: There are many home made mosquito repellents one can throw together to ward off mosquitoes. Many people claim that leaving a saucer of dishwashing soap close to the area you want to keep mosquito free does the trick, while herbal remedies such as peppermint oil, lemon eucalyptus oil, witch hazel and vanilla extract are also useful anti mosquito solutions when applied to the skin if you don’t have insect repellent handy. Citronella candles are also very effective in warding off mozzies.
3. Plants that repel mosquitoes: If you have a green thumb, this is where eliminating these annoying insects is fun, at the same time brightening up your garden. Placing garlic and lavender plants around your home is deemed useful in getting rid of mosquitoes, while plants such as marigold, catnip, rosemary, peppermint and ageratum also work well as a mosquito repellent.
4. Trim weeds in and around your garden: Mozzies spend their daytime by lying low in grass and weeds, which provides them with the high level of humidity they need to avoid drying out. Make sure to keep your garden trimmed to give these annoying bugs less hiding spots.
5. Be sure to remove stagnant water: Mosquitoes love breeding in warm and damp conditions, and still-standing water provides them with the perfect spot to do this. Do a check around your property to make sure that trenches are not blocked, and drains are clear and running. If you suspect that mosquitoes might be breeding in these places, treat these areas with bleach. Also make sure not to leave containers around the garden that can contain stagnant water.
Although there are plenty of mosquito control products and DIY mosquito repellent remedies once can use, if you experience a serious mosquito problem you will need the help of the Rentokil pest control experts. Rentokil offers a treatment that targets the larval stage of mosquitoes, whereby still standing water is treated with specialised chemicals – getting rid of mosquitoes before they become adults.
Here is to preventing these bothersome insects from bugging us; be gone and buzz off!