The monsoon season may be late this year, but when it does come, the mosquitoes come with it. Not only do their bites make our skin suffer, but Arizona mosquitoes can carry the West Nile Virus. Since there is no West Nile vaccine for humans, the best thing you can do is protect yourself. Here are some helpful tips:
- Standing water. This is the most important thing you can do to reduce the population of mosquitoes around your home. They lay their eggs near water and they don’t need much of it. Empty, scrub or toss any items in your yard that can hold water. This could be flowerpots, buckets, birdbaths, and children’s toys. Unattended pools can be a great place for mosquitos, so report any ailing pools in your neighborhood.
- Homemade repellant. Mosquitoes hate garlic. Many people find that a mix of 1 part garlic juice with 5 parts water is enough to keep these pests away. A spray with catnip oil does a better job of repelling mosquitoes than DEET.
- Get a bat house. Bats can eat hundreds of insects every hour, including mosquitoes. Buy a bat house at a local hardware store or DIY it and build it yourself.
- Turn on a fan. All it takes is about 2 mph of wind to overpower a mosquito. Install overhead fans on your patio or plug in a freestanding, oscillating fan.
- Plant lemongrass. Thai lemongrass is not appreciated by these pesky bugs. Plant it in your yard or grow it in pots around your outdoor seating areas.
- Switch your lights. We all know bugs are attracted to lights, but mosquitoes dislike LED lights, yellow bug lights, and sodium lamps.
- Change your clothes. Wear light-colored clothes because some species of mosquitoes are attracted to dark and red clothing. Cover as much skin as possible so they don’t have an open invitation.
When mosquito season comes, you don’t have to suffer. These easy tips can keep you safe and allow you to enjoy the cool evenings in your backyard.