Mosquito Management for Landscapes and Backyards
Property owners are more concerned than ever about mosquito-borne illnesses such as West Nile, Chikungunya and Zika – not to mention the sheer nuisance factor. Mosquito populations can be proactively managed through treatments and cultural practices to create a healthy outdoor environment for people and pets.
Organic Mosquito Repellent
Garlic makes a powerful natural mosquito repellent. The bulbs contain an amino acid that converts to a substance called allicin when crushed, blended or chopped. The characteristic odor released during this process has powerful natural mosquito repellent properties. SavATree’s Organic Mosquito treatment uses a process that enhances the enzyme action occurring when garlic is crushed in order to improve the natural mosquito repellent properties of the juice.
When this organic mosquito repellent is absorbed by a plant, biochemical changes take place in its foliage that cause it to repel mosquitos. Basically, plants are given a long-lasting case of garlic breath that forces insects to move on. Remarkably, the mosquito management treatment is odorless to humans within minutes of application. The treatment repels mosquitos for up to 30 days.
Mosquito Treatment (Synthetic Organic)
For property owners requiring a longer term, more comprehensive mosquito repellent the Synthetic Organic Mosquito Treatment is the perfect choice. This treatment provides residual control for up to 2 months, and has the added benefit of also killing ants, spiders and other pests.
The mosquito life cycle consists of four different stages: egg, larva, pupa, and adult. The adult female mosquito lays her eggs in stagnant water and the life cycle begins. The mosquito egg hatches to become a larva, which then transforms into a pupa. The adult mosquito then emerges from the mature pupa. This process can take from 5 to 14 days. An adult mosquito’s life span is from one week to several months. Once the mosquito has entered its adult form, it can then feed on humans.It is during this feeding process that there is the possibility of passing along disease such as West Nile, Chikungunya, Zika and other mosquito-vectored diseases.
In addition to treatments, property owners can create a landscape that is inhospitable to mosquitos by taking the following steps:
- Planting herbs that are natural mosquito repellants such as citronella, basil, marigold, lavender, catnip, cedar (Thuja family), lemon balm and rosemary are a good way to begin. Planting in portable potted planters, so you can move them to the table when eating outside, is helpful, as is planting some herbs and flowers near doorways. (Bonus: your yard will smell fantastic!)
- Eliminate any standing water on the property, if possible. Some items that should be monitored are: flower pots, birdbaths, pet water bowls, gutters, cans, and buckets. This interrupts the mosquito life cycle. All swimming pools should be maintained correctly to ensure they are not breeding grounds for mosquitoes.
- Check all windows and door screens to ensure they are working correctly and are free from holes to prevent mosquitoes from entering your home.
- When outside for extended periods of time, wear long-sleeved shirts and pants to help protect from mosquito bites. Mosquitoes are most active in the early morning and evening, avoid being outside during these times of the day.
- The use of an insect repellent, which is applied to the skin or clothing, will provide short-term protection against mosquito bites.
Zika Virus Update
“Eastern equine encephalitis virus (EEEV) is transmitted to humans by the bite of an infected mosquito. Eastern equine encephalitis (EEE) is a rare illness in humans, and only a few cases are reported in the United States each year. Most cases occur in the Atlantic and Gulf Coast states (see map). Most persons infected with EEEV have no apparent illness. Severe cases of EEE (involving encephalitis, an inflammation of the brain) begin with the sudden onset of headache, high fever, chills, and vomiting. The illness may then progress into disorientation, seizures, or coma. EEE is one of the most severe mosquito-transmitted diseases in the United States with approximately 33% mortality and significant brain damage in most survivors. There is no specific treatment for EEE; care is based on symptoms. You can reduce your risk of being infected with EEEV by using insect repellent, wearing protective clothing, and staying indoors while mosquitoes are most active. If you think you or a family member may have EEE, it is important to consult your healthcare provider for proper diagnosis.”
Centers for Disease Control & Prevention