Act Now to Keep Your Yard & Garden Safe from Bugs

When we spend time in our backyards – and with spring approaching, it won't be long until most of us will be able to comfortably start doing that again – we begin thinking about all the fun we're going to have.

But there is a group that doesn't want us to enjoy ourselves. In fact, they want to feast on you, your pets, and your garden.

I'm talking about bugs. Many bugs. Many different bugs. Right now, a lot of them are emerging from hibernation. A bunch of others are heading north toward us as our weather warms. And billions of them are just a twinkle in their parents' eyes right now. 

To us, they are a pain somewhere to the south of our eyes. Their goal is to gain nutrition from our blood, the blood of our pets, and the plants in our garden. And I can't ever remember any of them ever offering to pay for any of it.

Don't provide a home where bugs can roam

There are many ways to try to keep ticks and mosquitos out of your yard. For one, take away their habitats.

Ticks love leaf litter, tall grass, and brush – so rake, mow and clear. Divide your lawn from any wooded area with a three-foot wide barrier of wood chips.

Mosquitos love standing water, where they can hang out and breed. So, drain those areas regularly. Including kids' pools, flowerpots, buckets, wheelbarrows, and bird baths.

There's nothing like a nice, shady area on your lawn where you can sit and relax. The problem is, mosquitos love shade too. Limit shady areas by cutting back trees and pruning hedges.

Bugs can carry dangerous diseases

Something we sometimes forget about when it comes to mosquitoes and ticks is that not only are they annoying and cause painful itching, they can also be dangerous to our health and that of our pets.

Some mosquitos carry diseases they can transmit to humans and animals. Including West Nile virus, heartworm, malaria, dengue fever and chikungunya. Ticks carry Lyme disease plus bacteria, viruses, and parasites. 

And there's no way to know whether a bug is dangerous. They don't carry signs. Any bite could make you, your children or grandchildren, or your pets sick or worse. 

Nobody wants something like that to happen, especially when we'll look back and realize it was all so preventable. 

Avoid mosquito bites

Before I get to a great way to avoid mosquito bites, let me first give you some good ways to avoid them, as well as some good ways to treat them when they happen.

Use a mosquito repellent. There are over-the-counter sprays and rub-ons containing DEET. If you want to avoid that chemical, make your own concoction.

Mosquitos aim for thin-skinned areas because they can get to your blood easier. Apply the repellent to exposed areas of skin. Focus on your feet, ankles, lower legs, and wrists.

Bugs are also attracted to dark colors. Wear light-colored clothing when you're outdoors. Long sleeves and pants can be helpful for avoiding bites. A thicker fabric with a looser fit is preferable to tight-fitting, thin fabrics.

Avoid the outdoors around dawn and dusk. That way your blood won't be available to them during their favorite parts of the day. When indoors, keep windows closed unless you're sure there are no holes in your screens.

Treating mosquito bites

Scratching mosquito bites usually makes them itch more and longer. That's not a good "treatment." 

If you break the skin while scratching, you can expose yourself to an additional infection. Wash the area with soap and water, then cover it with a bandage.

Ice will slow blood flow to the area, thereby reducing inflammation and swelling. Apply aloe vera directly to the bite to relieve itching and discomfort. Or press a steeped chamomile tea bag to your bite.

Some folks apply other items to their bites. Including honey, vinegar, and even an oatmeal paste. Others like to use hydrocortisone cream or take an antihistamine.  

Hey, bugs… bug off!

Wouldn't it be wonderful if there were a clean, quiet, odor-free way to keep your yard clear of the annoying – and potentially dangerous – bugs who want to spoil your outdoor fun?   

Fortunately, there is. This is the great way to avoid mosquito bites I mentioned a moment ago. The BugOUT Solar Lantern from 4Patriots features three different light settings and serves as a decorative light.

You can take this compact, portable lantern anywhere you go. It has a convenient handle so you can hang it on a tree branch at your campsite or on a clothesline in your backyard.

It's lightweight (just one pound) but does the job. We call it the king of bug-zappers. With its solar panel, the BugOUT Solar Lantern charges in the sun.

And it's rainproof and water-resistant. It both attracts and kills bugs. Without using pesticides or chemicals. And it cleans itself every 72 hours.

As great as this lantern is, it might not be enough to cover the entire area of your backyard or campsite. You may want to pick up several of them.

Protect yourself, your backyard guests, your pets, and your garden with the BugOUT Solar Lantern. It will keep your outdoor space safe by keeping bugs away.    

Here's how to get yours…

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