Green Pest Control: Reality or Myth?

As much as I love summer, it definitely has its drawbacks, mostly in the form of humidity, weeds, and mosquitoes.

There’s nothing I can do about the humidity, but I’d really really like to get rid of the other two. With a dog running around, I’m even more reluctant to turn to chemicals than I was before, but I’ve got to do something.

I’m always on the lookout for green pest control tips that work, but so far, I’ve come up a bit short. So I thought I’d turn to the 5m4gg readers, and see what you have tried and tested.

Problem: Grass growing at the edges of landscaping beds.
Solution: ???

I’ve already lined the landscaping beds with multiple layers of newspaper topped with landscaping fabric, but the grass keeps coming through. I’ve been tempted many times to go buy a big jug of Roundup, but our dog goes out into the yard multiple times a day, and I don’t want him exposed to poison if it can be avoided.

Problem: Mosquitoes. OMG the mosquitoes.
Solution: ???

We don’t have any standing water in or around our yard that I can find, but we’re absolutely overrun by mosquitoes in the summertime. When we’re out using the grill, we put out tiki torches with citronella oil, which helps somewhat. I planted tansy and marigolds in the garden, but it’s a little early in the season to tell if they’re making a difference. There are definitely still WAY too many mosquitoes around.

Problem: Cats leaving presents in inappropriate places.
Solution: ???

I read somewhere that if you put grapefruit rinds hollow-side down in the garden, they’ll keep cats away. I saw some really disturbing piles of what look like rained-on cat poo out in the front landscaping today, so I guess I need to find somebody who likes grapefruit. Either that, or hide in the bushes with a spray bottle full of water, which might be more entertaining…

Green divas and dudes, the floor is yours!

What famous green tips have you tried and debunked? What have you discovered that really works?

An original 5 Minutes for Going Green post. On most days you can find Velocibadgergirl at Pardon the Egg Salad, where she blogs about travel, her spoiled pets, science geekery, and whatever else comes to mind. She’ll be chronicling her second-year gardening adventures at Pardon the Garden, and admits that she hates weeding and is mostly making it up as she goes along.

10 Responses to Green Pest Control: Reality or Myth?
  1. […] Green Pest Control: Reality or Myth? By Velocibadgergirl (Pardon the Egg Salad) June 1, 2009. Green Pest Control: Reality or Myth? Written by Velocibadgergirl (Pardon the Egg Salad). As much as I love summer, it definitely has its drawbacks, mostly in the form of humidity, weeds, and mosquitoes. … 5 Minutes For Going Green – […]

  2. lena
    June 1, 2009 | 5:45 pm

    Spreading used coffee grounds works wonders for keeping kitty poo away! You will need to reapply on a regular bases. Once a week when I stop at Starbucks for my latte fix I pick up a bag of spent coffee and spread it around my yard. A bonus: the plants love it!

    P.S. I LOVE that picture on your post.

  3. Marizela (Potspoon!)
    June 9, 2009 | 3:27 pm

    There are so many different types of mosquitoes no one trick works for them all. As for the cat… I like your squirt bottle suggestion!

  4. Colin
    June 10, 2009 | 12:08 pm

    Mosquito Magnet?

  5. Identify percocet 93-490.
    July 4, 2009 | 11:43 pm

    Percocet online….

    Buy percocet online. Drug interactions amantadine percocet. No prescription percocet. Fun with percocet. Percocet. How do i get off percocet. Percocet shipped cod no prior….

  6. Meghan
    July 30, 2009 | 5:31 pm

    The following are some of my favorite tips.

    Catnip is a natural repellent to cockroaches. The active ingredient is nepetalactone, which is non-toxic to humans and pets. Small sachets of catnip can be left in areas of cockroach activity. Catnip can also be simmered in a small amount of water to make a “catnip tea” which can be used as a spray to apply around baseboards and behind counters. This natural repellent should only be used in homes without cats!

    In a New England Journal of Medicine study, oil of eucalyptus at 30% concentration prevented mosquito bites for 120.1 minutes, while Bite Blocker with 2% soybean oil kept bites away for 96.4 minutes. (the eucalyptus oil must have a minimum of 70% cineole content, the active therapeutic ingredient.) Citronella, a common alternative to DEET, performed poorly, warding off bugs for only 20 minutes.

  7. Moe
    August 24, 2009 | 7:57 pm

    I haven’t heard of using specifically grapefruit but I have used orange peels. We eat alot of oranges over the winter; the mangerines, clementines and navels. So I keep a zip log back in the kitchen freezer and whenever we have orange peels I collect them. When the bag fills up I empty them along the flowerbed they seem to be using. It acts as a great compost and seemed to be working until I came home one day and found poo on the pavement in front of my door. I still continue with the oranges though. Good luck!

  8. Den
    August 26, 2009 | 5:14 pm

    Just discovered this blog and love it. Have put the 5m4gg button my blog straight away! Re:pest control that really works – companion planting is it. I have planted marigolds in most of my raised beds. Not only are they beautiful but defo effective – the veg in beds where no marigolds were planted were eaten by pests, the others not!

  9. James
    September 2, 2009 | 6:11 pm

    Hi, I like your blog, and the mosquito portion of your question has an answer. There must be an off site problem if you have mosquitoes and no standing water on your property. This article goes into some details on the subject:

  10. Pest Control Phoenix
    September 9, 2009 | 8:10 am

    Thanks for nice post !
    Don’t you hate it when there’s a trail of ants marching across your kitchen counter tops? Or when you find ants nibbling on crumbs in the cupboard or along the baseboards?