Summer Florida Pest Control Seasonal Advice
South Florida’s summer = bugs’ paradise. When we think of summer, we think of bugs. This is the time of year when we get an increase in rain, humidity, and temperature. All of this leads to an increase in insect activity.
Pest Control: Watch out for ants and mosquitoes!
Over the next several months there will be an increase in White footed ants, Big headed ants, Ghost ants, Fire ants, Carpenter ants, Caribbean crazy ants (in South Florida), mosquitoes, and fleas. Keep an eye out for heavy ant trails around the walls, driveways, windows, fences, and throughout the yard. Interior activity will probably be around the kitchen and bathrooms, or near any possible water source.
Carpenter ants and White footed ants usually originate from trees and bushes, so you will want to check these areas for ants. You may also notice insects swarming (flying) in and around your yard. Insects spread and mate this way. If the bugs are swarming inside of your home, you could have an infestation problem.
Fleas are also very common at this time of year. The most common flea problem we encounter is with the Cat flea. They breed in sand and dirt, and the hotter it gets outside the worse a cat flea problem can become.
The summer rains and temperatures make it easy to loose control of foliage growth. As plants grow out and touch the side of your house ants are able to use the tree limbs as a bridge to your home. Trimming new tree limbs and foliage away from the house will help decrease the chance of these pests getting inside.
Outside lighting is another factor. Insects are attracted to bright white lights so we recommend using standard yellow lighting. Keep pet dishes inside and trash away from the house so you don’t draw ants, rodents, or other wildlife toward the home. Yard debris should be bagged and taken away from the property to decrease harborage areas for insects.
Checking your home and yard is key to maintaining a pest free environment, and Hulett performs a thorough pest inspection during every visit. We utilize the industry’s newest methods and prescription treatments.
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Termite Control: It’s termite swarm season!
Summer begins Drywood termite swarming season, which generally occurs at nighttime as opposed to Subterranean termite swarms that generally occur in the daytime. Drywood termites live their entire life inside wood with no ground contact and their swarmers tend to be brownish in color.
Subterranean termites continue to swarm into the summer months as well. However, the exotic Subterranean termite species known as the Formosan termite is just beginning to swarm at this time of year. The Formosan termite is normally found in only certain areas of the state, but for the past few years has been starting to spread.
Subterranean swarms will be much larger and contain more termites than Drywood termite swarms. Carpenter ants also swarm during the summer months and homeowners often get them confused with termites.
Swarming termites are easy to exterminate and can be done so using any household cleaning product. The important issue here is that swarmers are a sign of termite infestation, and that means you have a problem. Luckily, the experts at Hulett are here to help!
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Lawn Care: Watch out for chinch bugs and damaging worms!
Insect pressure is very high in the summer months. Common problems at this time of year involve Sod webworms, Army worms and Chinch bugs in grass areas. Ornamentals tend to have problems with whitefly and scale.
Summer is the primetime for weed germination and proper watering and mowing will help reduce these potential problems. It is also important to keep mulch thickness around 1-2 inches in the bedding areas to prevent weed growth and retain soil moisture. However, too much mulch could lead to additional insect problems and the decay of the crown of your plants.
The summer months bring a lot of rain here in South Florida so the need to irrigate is much less than at other times of the year. Your lawn and landscape should only be watered as needed. Over-watering is one the main reasons for weeds, excess growth, and thatch buildup which can lead to disease and insect pressure. Diseases such as grey spot leaf and dollar spot are common.
Summer is a good time to repair any damage to your lawn that may have occurred during drier times in spring months. These areas should be plugged or sodded depending on the size of the problem; otherwise these spots will fill in with weeds.
This time of year is a great time to selectively prune your plant material. Be sure to trim off old dead wood, diseased branches, and out of place branches and leaves allowing the plant to shape itself and produce new foliage. Remove dead fronds and branches on your larger trees and palms. This will help thin out the canopy and allow for more air movement.
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Hulett Environmental Services is a full service pest control company that has been serving South Florida for more than 40 years! Our trained professionals will perform a thorough inspection of your home or office, and then recommend the treatment type that is best for you!