Pest Control Myths
It may seem impossible to keep bugs out of your house. There are many DIY tricks to stop pests, but which ones actually work? Ron Harrison, entomologist and technical services director a national pest control company, debugged some of these myths. If you try these prevention tips, but pest activity continues, call a licensed pest professional.
Truth: Orange peels to repel cockroaches
Some orange varieties, such as the Osage orange, contain a chemical compound that repels cockroaches. However, while the fruit may repel in the immediate area, it will not prevent them from infesting other areas.
To prevent cockroaches:
▪ Remove all water and food spills.
▪ Seal all cracks and crevices inside and outside the home, as adult cockroaches can squeeze through a space as thin as a quarter.
Myth: Grits kill fire ants
The theory is that when fire ants eat dry grits and then consume water, their stomachs will explode. Since adult ants cannot digest solid foods, this theory is a myth.
Here is what can help prevent fire ant activity:
▪ Remove food and moisture sources that attract fire ants including spills, open food containers, pet food and water bowls.
▪ Seal gaps around doors and windows to make it difficult for fire ants to enter.
Truth: Bags of water to repel flies
You may have seen water hanging in a clear bag on a porch or outside of a restaurant. There is evidence the water bag can repel flies? It’s not the water itself or the plastic bag. The trick is when light reflects on the water inside the bag, it confuses the flies and they stay away.
Truth: Soapy water to repel garden bugs
Aphids thrive when temperatures rise, and they feed on trees, flowers, fruits and vegetables. Combining 2 tablespoons of dish soap with a gallon of water and spraying plant leaves every few days can help manage aphid infestations.