- Author: Andrew Mason Sutherland
[From the Summer issue of the UC IPM Retail Nursery & Garden Center News]
Don't let the bed bugs bite? That's easier said than done, it seems. Bed bugs (Figure 1) continue to be important household pests globally, driving a growing sector of the pest control industry. Professionals have access to effective insecticides and specialized techniques, such as heat treatments, to control bed bug infestations. These services, however, can be expensive: a recent survey revealed the average cost of professional insecticide treatments and heat treatments to be $425 and $1,400,.../span>
If you've ever had ants come indoors, you know what a nuisance they can be when they crawl across kitchen countertops, invade your pet's food bowl, and get into garbage cans.
So, what should you do? Outsmart the ants.
Ants are usually looking for food, water and shelter. Although spraying a pesticide may seem like an easy solution, this won't get rid of the reason the ants are there, and they will be back.
Instead, here are some other things you can do to keep them out and make your house less attractive to ants:
- Find where the ants are entering, then caulk cracks and crevices both indoors and out.
- Wipe up ant trails with soapy water as soon as you see them.
- Store food...
Record-breaking heat continues to scald California, leading many of us to water our landscapes and gardens more. While the water is good for plants and helps us cool down, even the smallest amount of standing water mixed with high temperatures create an ideal climate for mosquito breeding. Use the following tips to help reduce mosquito habitats and protect yourself from bites avoid being bitten.
Tip #1: Mosquitoes need water for the larval stage of their life cycle. Eliminate breeding sites in your yard by:
- Draining any containers that hold standing water; even something as small as a flower pot saucer can harbor mosquitoes.
- Emptying out bird baths once per week.
- Protecting ponds by...
- Author: Cheryl A. Wilen
[From the UC Weed Science blog]
In what has been dubbed “dandelion-gate,” members of the Washington State legislature spent 20 minutes complaining about weeds on the capital's lawn. “In all the years I've been here I've never seen so many dandelions all over,” Sen. Mike Padden (R) said. “Is it your policy not to treat dandelions?” The department responsible for landscaping responded that the legislature cut its budget and now it only has 15 people covering the nearly 500 acre campus.
Many retail nurseries and garden centers sell lady beetles for controlling aphids in gardens and landscapes. Gardeners often ask, “Does releasing lady beetles really work?
University of California research has demonstrated that lady beetle releases can effectively control aphids in a limited landscape or garden area if properly handled and applied in sufficient numbers. However, because of inadequate release rates or poor quality, lady beetles often fail to provide satisfactory control; other low toxicity aphid management practices such as hosing off or insecticidal soap or oil sprays may be more effective. Here are some things to consider if you decide to try lady beetle releases: