Decorate for the holidays without worrying about pests
It’s 2018 and the holidays have arrived. Many of you are planning dinners for family and friends and some of you will even have family staying in your home. You already have so much todo, you may have never even given any thought to the potential pest risk of decorating for the holidays.
DIY holiday decorating is fun, affordable, and looks great. It also brings a risk of introducing ants, spiders, ticks, and even mice into your home. Some of the most common ways are, live Christmas trees, wreaths, pine cones, and leaves.
What to do before bringing in live plant decorations
Before bringing any live trees, wreaths, leaves, branches, or vines indoors, you should inspect them thoroughly for live insects, eggs, webs, and even nests. Then shake everything out really well outdoors. Insects and eggs can be very well hidden down in the cracks and crevices of greenery. This should lower the chances of you starting an accidental pest infestation yourself.
Other ways pests can access your home during the holidays
Where do you keep your boxed or stored decorations? Most people keep them in an attic, basement, crawl space, garage, or outbuilding. Those places just happen to be easy access for pests, especially mice, crickets, and spiders. These boxes make great housing for pests as they stay undisturbed for the majority of the year.
Before unpacking your boxed or bagged decorations you should thoroughly inspect for any chew marks, and open the boxes or bags outside. Make sure you look for chewed wires, rodent droppings, and spider egg sacks.
Prepare for the next holiday season
At the end of this holiday season when it’s time to pack everything back up and put it away for another 11 months consider using plastic bins that seal shut instead of cardboard boxes or even garbage bags. It may cost a couple bucks more but knowing you have your decorations stored in something that pests can’t get into is worth it. It’s definitely worth it if it saves you from having to call a professional to come out and get rid of an infestation.
Dangers of firewood storage
There’s nothing cozier, more relaxing, or romantic than a crackling fire in the fireplace during the holidays. You can’t have that fire without firewood though, and firewood is one of the easiest ways to bring bugs and insects into the home. Termites, cockroaches, wood boring beetles, and more love to find their way into firewood stacks outside.
To help prevent bringing insects in with firewood first keep firewood stacked on some type of raised firewood holder. This not only helps firewood dry better, but it also makes it harder to get to and less likely to be chewed into. Another way to help keep firewood dry is by covering it up with a tarp. Wet firewood attracts pests. Keep firewood stacked at least 20 feet from your home. You don’t want to draw insects close to your home. Rotate the firewood you burn. Don’t just grab the firewood on top of the stack. The longer the firewood sits out in the elements the more likely it is to have been invaded by pests. Lastly, don’t leave extra firewood sitting by the back door or in the house. We can all use the exercise so walk out to the firewood stack and get what you need for now. You can always walk back out when you need more. Keeping extra firewood in the home is just asking insects to invade your home.
Follow these tips and you should drastically cut down the chances of bringing in pests this holiday season. If you do still have issues and need a hand please give us a call we are happy to help you out.