Wednesday, July 27, 2016

5 Natural Ways to Rid Your Outdoor Living Area of Summer Pests

Mosquitoes bugging you? Flies pestering you?

It is summertime in the Kerrville and San Antonio area and we are enjoying entertaining and being outdoors. But, there are insects to deal with. Ever wondered what you can do to avoid bites and waving your arms around like crazy attempting to keep flies off the freshly grilled burgers?

There are choices in how to rid your outdoor living area from annoying pests. Chemical pesticides are an option, but they are expensive and may kill what we consider to be pests. Some bugs are actually beneficial to our environment. These pesticides may also be harmful to our pets and even small children.
Texas Hill Country; Landscaping
Lavender at Ladybird Johnson Wildflower Center
Rather than resort to chemically treating our patios, yards and gardens, Burroughs Landscaping suggests a natural way to enjoy your summer minus the worry of irritating bites and ruined food.

Consider planting garden herbs in containers close to and around patio doors, gardens, grills; anywhere you plan to spend time with friends and family outdoors this summer. Basil, Lavender, Rosemary, Mint and Lemon Grass are herbs that provide protection from insects, exhibit beauty and can be used to spice up your favorite dishes.

Did you know that basil repels mosquitoes and flies? Create beds or plant basil in pots around outdoor eating areas and near doorways. Basil is an excellent choice for Texas Hill Country as it thrives in full sun. Especially if planted in pots, a splash of water daily will keep this durable herb healthy. The peppery, tangy herb will provide a nice aroma as well as spice up Italian and Asian dishes. If you don’t cook with basil, butterflies will love to visit, providing extra color and entertainment.

Lavender works much the same as basil. Beds or pots of lavender around doorways keeps mosquitoes, flies, fleas and even scorpions away. Along with keeping pests away, lavender adds color to your landscape as well as an exhilarating aroma. Sachets of lavender can help keep moths away in drawers and closets as well.

Rosemary is another choice to keep insects away from your outdoor living area. Sun-loving and requiring little water, rosemary will add some color to your Texas HillCountry landscape with small clusters of light lavender/blue flowers through the fall and into the winter. Rosemary produces oil that repels mosquitoes and scorpions. Also, placing a spring of rosemary on food while it is on the grill will add flavor as well as the scented smoke keeping mosquitoes and flies at a distance. Grow lavender in pots or mix into landscaping beds and borders.

Mint repels fleas, ants and flies. Growing in pots may be the best option for this herb, as it is prone to be invasive. Rub mint on your skin to avoid being bitten.

Lemon grass and lemon balm contain citronella oil which is used for insect repellent and candles. This low maintenance plant with long gray-green leaf blades will prevent mosquitoes in and around your outdoor living area. Deer resistant, lemon grass is an annual, ornamental grass. Low maintenance, yet requiring moisture, partial shade is the perfect location for this carefree grass that can also be used in preparing Asian dishes.

This summer, rather than spending money on costly pesticides,  Burroughs Landscaping suggests considering using herbs to deter insects from disturbing your cookouts and outdoor entertaining in your natural landscape.

Burroughs Landscaping offers outstanding service and innovative ideas with landscaping tailored to Xeriscaping in Hill Country Texas. The experienced team enjoys landscaping in Kerrville, Hunt, Ingram, Fredericksburg, Boerne, Bandera, Comfort, San Antonio and Mountain Home. Burroughs works with home owners, builders and general contractors and considers the location, topography, aesthetics and aspirations of each client.

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