Natural Ways To Prevent Pests

Preventing pests means you not only avoid the nuisance of an infestation - but you can also limit your pesticide use. After all, there’s no need to treat pests if they don't become an issue in the first place! Below are some general ways you can naturally prevent pests from entering your home and yard.

Think like a bug 

  • Know about pest habitat and active periods for pests in your region
  • Monitor your home and yard
  • Identify the source of the pest presence
  • Practice early management

 

Apply barriers to the home

  • Repair cracks in plumbing, foundation, and other openings to the home
  • Use well-fitted window screens and door sweeps
  • Properly seal windows, doors, and garage doors

 

Limit habitat

  • Dump standing water
  • Keep the lawn, shrubs, and trees trimmed
  • Fix any shady or wet problem areas in the yard
  • Remove ground cover adjacent to the house

 

Tidy up the yard

  • Pick up debris
  • Clean your gutters regularly
  • Keep firewood piles away from the house

 

Keep the house clean

  • Clean up spills as soon as they happen
  • Sweep and vacuum regularly – be particularly vigilant around pet areas, kitchens, and garbage cans
  • Store food in sealed containers 
  • Make sure trash makes it into the trash can

 

Ventilate humid areas

  • Reduce humidity in bathrooms, kitchens, basements, attics, and crawl spaces

 

Remove “bridges” to the home:

  • Remove or trim ground cover so it is not touching the house
  • Make sure there aren’t any branches or wires connecting trees and the roof
  • Use mulch around the perimeter of the home

 

Cited Sources

Frank, S., L. Bradley and K. Moore. North Carolina Extension Gardener Handbook 

 

North Carolina State Extension. Chapter 8. Integrated Pest Management (IPM)

 

University of California IPM. Applying IPM in your home and landscape