Herb Gardening Basics and Tips

How to Keep Bugs out of Your Home During the Summer

During the warm summer months, you may find more bugs entering your home. Whether they're in search of food, water, or a respite from the heat, you'll want to keep them out of your home at any cost. Once they enter your home and reproduce, they could be very difficult to get rid of. 

A few of the most common types of bugs you may see in spring and summer are cockroaches, ants, flies, and even spiders. In some cases, you may have to treat your outdoor areas, such as a porch, patio or front or back yard, in addition to protecting inside your home. For example, you can sprinkle diatomaceous earth, a non-toxic, food-grade powder consisting of fossilized marine phytoplankton, around the perimeter of your house to kill cockroaches before they have a chance to enter. 

Even though you'll be putting in your own efforts to keep warm-weather pests out, it's still important to have a professional pest control technician visit your home on a quarterly or biannual basis. They may be able to see potential pest problems before an infestation occurs and treat your home accordingly.

Following are some tips for keeping bugs out of your home when it begins to warm up:

1. Keep Your Home Clean

Although it may seem like a simple thing to do, keeping your home as clean as possible is one of the best ways to keep pests at bay. If you eliminate all food and water sources, you'll eliminate the bugs' incentives to enter.

For instance, try to keep dirty dishes out of the sink, as the food particles stuck to plates and bowls can be a bug magnet. Either wash the dishes right away or put them into the dishwasher. At the very least, rinse the surfaces with warm water to remove as much debris as possible. 

Sweep the kitchen floor on a regular basis and wipe down kitchen surfaces, such as countertops and tables, after you cook or eat. If you eat in carpeted areas of your home, vacuum at least every other day. Also, keep pet food and water bowls elevated off of the floor with a stand. 

2. Put Food in Air-Tight Containers 

Resist turning your kitchen cupboards and pantry into a bug buffet. Put dry goods in plastic or glass containers with air-tight lids. Instead of storing cereal, pasta, chips, cookies and other items in their open boxes and bags, pour the contents into labeled containers, which will also help keep your kitchen organized. 

Also, throw away any old fruit, such as overripe bananas, rather than keeping them on your counter. Another way to protect food from insects is by keeping it in the refrigerator.