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How to Protect Your Home From Ants, Fleas, Ticks and More

By Jolene Hansen
Some common lawn and garden pests tend to congregate in areas right outside your home. Given opportunities, they don't hesitate to move inside. Fight these perimeter pests while they're still outside by creating a barrier of protection. Proactive perimeter treatment draws a line that helps keep your home's exterior and interior protected against common culprits, including the following:

Ants

Wherever you find homes and buildings, you'll find ants nearby. Fond of nesting near foundation plantings, in wood or stone mulch, and along sidewalks, these pests are more than a nuisance; they can do damage, too. Their search for food, water and shelter draws them indoors, especially during times of drought or heavy rain. Once inside your home, they take up residence in cool, moist spots, and help themselves to whatever they can find. In the process, they leave well-marked trails so other ants can follow their lead.

Fleas and Ticks

Fleas and ticks hitch a ride inside on domestic pets, uninvited rodents and unsuspecting humans. Once inside your home, they can rapidly multiply. Many flea species carry common names, such as cat flea or sand flea, but they're not particular about their hosts. Any warm-blooded bodies will do. Ticks, however, can be picky about who they pester. But once indoors, dog ticks can multiply by the thousands and quickly infest your home.Taller grass and foundation plantings are favorite places where fleas and ticks hide in wait.

Scorpions

When nightfall comes, scorpions are on the move outside your home and on their way inside, through any spaces they can fit. Indoors or out, come morning, they find resting places for the day — under your welcome mat, behind indoor appliances or inside the pair of slip-ons you keep handy for quick dashes outside. Scorpions tend to gather in moist areas around your home's perimeter, including foundation plantings and faucet areas, and often seek out moisture indoors.

Effective Perimeter Protection

Pesticides with the active ingredient carbaryl create proven, protective barriers against common perimeter pests. Carbaryl-based products, such as Garden Tech® Sevin® Lawn Insect Granules, rid lawns and gardens of existing ants and their outdoor nests,kill blood-sucking fleas and ticks,3 put an end to scorpion surprises,and rid your perimeter of spiders, centipedes, millipedes and other pests in the process.

Sevin® Lawn Insect Granules allow for easy application around your home. Applied with a regular lawn spreader according to label instructions, the granules can create an 8- to 10-foot protective barrier. You can also treat larger lawn areas, if desired, including spaces where fruit, vegetables and other edible crops are grown. Simply follow label guidelines for the number of days between application and harvest.

For best results, mow your lawn first, and then apply Sevin® Lawn Insect Granules uniformly. Water the treated area immediately after application. This releases the pest-controlling action and eliminates the pests it contacts, before they can take up residence in your home. People and pets can reenter the area once watering-in is completed and the area has dried.

Fire Ant Protection

For the growing number of homeowners affected by fire ants, perimeter protection can be more urgent. Fire ants expand their territories quickly, take over new areas, and sting aggressively when disturbed. Effective perimeter protection eliminates existing fire ants fast and keeps the outdoor areas closest to your home free from new infestations.

GardenTech® Over'n Out!® Advanced Fire Ant Killer destroys existing fire ant mounds in 15 minutes and provides thorough, residual, six-month control against fire ants that try to move in. Protect your perimeter by treating any visible mounds and creating protection around your home or in lawn areas.

Apply Over'n Out® Advanced Fire Ant Killer during cool mornings or late evenings, when fire ants are most active. Use a lawn spreader to create a 5- to 10-foot barrier against these dangerous pests. Follow label instructions closely, and use only around the perimeter of edible crop gardens, not inside them. Water the area well when finished, and keep people and pets away until it dries.

With the help of proactive treatment from GardenTech® pest control products, you can draw the line against common perimeter pests before their populations and your problems multiply, and help keep your home and family pest free.

Always read the product label and follow the instructions carefully.

Sevin is registered trademark of Tessenderlo Kerley, Inc. GardenTech is a registered trademark of Gulfstream Home and Garden, Inc.. Over'n Out is a registered trademark of TechPac, L.L.C.

Related Articles in Perimeter Protection:

Sources:

1. Jonathan M. Sargent, Patricia Zungoli and Eric P. Benson, "Ticks Around Your Home,"Clemson University, October 1998.

2. Potter, Michael F., "Ant Control for Homeowners," University of Kentucky, April 2004.

3. Knodel, Dr. Janet, "Tick Season is Here!," North Dakota State University.

4. John Hopkins, Gus Lorenz, Glenn Studebaker and Kelly Loftin, "Biology and Control of Spiders, Scorpions, Centipedes and Millipedes," University of Arkansas.

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