Monthly Archives: June 2018

The Dangers of Biting Insects

Spending time out in nature is one of the best things about the spring, summer, and fall months. For New Englanders who must endure long, sometimes brutally cold, winter weather, these months come as a gift from Mother Nature. There is nothing like enjoying the salty sea air along the coast, or the cool air of one of the hiking trails in the many conservation lands in our area. Unfortunately, being outdoors means the possibility of being bitten by one of the many biting insects that make their habitat in our region. What are the potential dangers of these biting insects and what can you do to prevent bites as you enjoy the great outdoors?

 

  • Mosquitoes – These annoying buggers can ruin any day when you are being swarmed and bitten. The dangers of mosquitoes lie not in the bite itself but, rather, in the diseases that can be spread in saliva of the insect. Mosquitoes can transmit Eastern Equine Encephalitis or, most well known, West Nile Virus. West Nile virus (WNV) is a potentially serious illness that is carried from infected birds to humans via mosquitoes. Eastern equine encephalitis (EEE) virus is transmitted to humans by the bite of an infected mosquito. Eastern equine encephalitis (EEE) is a rare illness in humans, and only a few cases are reported in the United States each year. EEE can progress from flu-like symptoms to seizures, coma, and even death.

 

  • Ticks – Ticks in our area are known to carry Lyme Disease. Lyme disease is a multisystem inflammatory disease that affects the skin (a bullseye rash) in its early, localized stage, and then may spread to the joints, nervous system and, to a lesser extent, other organ systems in its later, disseminated stages.

Want more information about the dangers of biting insects and how to protect yourself? Visit our website or call Pro-Tech Lawn Care at (603) 382-9644 or Toll Free: (800) 313-4733.

Hydroseeding, Broadcast Seeding, or Sod?

Most homeowners who tend regularly to their lawn and garden want a healthy and aesthetically pleasing landscape. Our customers often seek out our help in regard to making their lawn full, green, and healthy. They often ask what method will best create the look they are hoping for: hydroseeding, sod, or broadcast seeding? Since each method has advantages and disadvantages, here is a quick breakdown to help you decide which method is right for you.

 

  • Budget – Deciding on which method to use to create a healthy lawn may come down to what the homeowner can afford. Sod tends to be the most expensive option, followed by hydroseeding, and then broadcast/hand seeding. What level of cost are you willing to meet to get the lawn you desire?
  • Germination Time – Sod is the quickest way to receive an instant lawn. Roll it out, water it, and voila! The hydroseeding procedure involves using a mixture or slurry of grass seed, wood-fiber mulch, fertilizer, and binding agents. These items help to speed up seed germination, which can take place sometimes within a week. Hand or broadcast seeding may take many weeks to even months to fully germinate and grow in. It may also need overseeding to get bare patches. How patient are you? Are you willing to wait for the perfect lawn or do you want it immediately?
  • Time of Year – When a homeowner wants the perfect the lawn, timing is a key component on which option to pick. For example, sod can be installed at anytime in the spring, summer, or fall. It just needs watering and some care so the seams do not shrink and become visible. Hydroseeding is best done from late spring to early fall. The best time to broadcast seed is in the fall, followed by summer, and then spring, respectively.
  • Other Thoughts – If your yard is large or has areas where erosion is common hydroseeding may be a good choice as it can stop the erosion while not costing an arm and leg, like sod would.

 

Do you need help getting your lawn to look fantastic? Having trouble deciding which option is best for your property? Call Pro-Tech Lawn Care at (603) 382-9644 or Toll Free: (800) 313-4733, or visit our website.

Prevent Pests from Ruining your Outdoor Entertaining

Summer is such a great time for outdoor entertaining around the grill, fire pit, or pool, as the days are longer and the weather is perfect for such events. Unfortunately, these fun get togethers sometimes have uninvited guests such as pests like bees, flies, mosquitoes, and ticks. Here are some simple, yet effective ways to prevent pests from ruining your outdoor entertaining this summer.

 

  • Yard Treatment – Talk to our experts about treating your yard for mosquitoes and other pests that can be a huge pain during outdoor dinner parties. Our comprehensive monthly treatment program can protect your family and guests from ticks, mosquitoes, and other flying pests throughout the active season.
  • Cover Foods – The item that most attracts pests during your BBQ or dinner parties is most likely the food! Cover all food serving dishes when possible or, better yet, move them into the kitchen and have guests serve from inside. One item that tends to attract bees are soda and beer cans. Bees love to nose around in these cans and can sting an unsuspecting drinker. Keep cans and drinks covered as well.
  • Dress for Prevention – While it may be hot outside, the pests love exposed skin. Try to wear long sleeved, light weight clothing that will protect the largest part of your body. Use insect repellent such as Permethrin on clothing and DEET on skin.
  • Use Fans – Mosquitoes and other insects have trouble landing when there is a stiff wind or human-made wind from a fan. Bring out some standing fans and direct them on guests around your patio so that these buggers can’t get a chance to land and bite.
  • Try Insect Repelling Plantings – Up the odds that your outdoors will be pest-free by planting some naturally insect repelling plantings. The following plants are known to have mosquito-repelling properties: marigolds, Rosemary, Lavender, Basil, and Catnip.

 

Talk to our team at Pro-Tech Lawn Care about how you can prevent pests from ruining your time outside with our helpful tips and treatment solutions. Call Pro-Tech Lawn Care at (603) 382-9644 or Toll Free: (800) 313-4733, or visit our website.

 

Mosquito-Proof Your Yard

Nothing can ruin a day of gardening, playing, or entertaining quite like the annoyance of mosquitoes. They buzz in your ear, bite your ankles and cause welts that itch like crazy! Not only are these little pests a nuisance, but they can also be dangerous as they can carry and transmit diseases. Zika, West Nile Virus, and a list of other mosquito-borne diseases carried by these pests can make humans very ill and, in some cases, can be fatal. Here are a few tips to mosquito-proof your yard this year so you can enjoy it for what it was intended.

 

  • Remove Breeding Sites – For a typical yard this means removing all sources of standing water around your yard, whether it is a pet bowl, an upside down frisbee, a kiddie pool, or a spare tire hidden behind the shed. Fix leaky hoses, properly store pool covers, and clean out gutters that may harbor a hidden breeding location.
  • Keep your Lawn Well-Manicured – Long grass is a great place for mosquitoes to get out of the sun. Keeping your grass short and yard well-maintained is essential to mosquito control.
  • Treat your Yard – Many homeowners are turning to mosquito treatments, especially along fence/property lines and along foundations. Talk to our experts at Pro-Tech Lawn Care to see how this could benefit your family.
  • Avoid Peak Hours – Mosquitoes tend to be most active at dawn and dusk. The lack of wind, sunlight, and heat makes this an ideal time for feeding. If you must be out during this time, wear lightweight long sleeved/pant clothing and protect yourself with Permethrin on clothing and DEET on skin.
  • Encourage Neighbors to Get Onboard – If your yard is mosquito-proofed and your close neighbor is not then your efforts may not work. So get your neighbors on board and help them create a mosquito-free zone as much as possible.

 

Need help making your yard mosquito-proof? Call Pro-Tech Lawn Care at (603) 382-9644 or Toll Free: (800) 313-4733, or visit our website.

4 Tips to Prevent Tick Bites and Lyme Disease

As the weather improves, New Englanders tend to start spending more and more time outdoors playing, gardening, enjoying the sun, and entertaining. While humans are getting out more, so are the pests and insects, specifically pests like ticks that can transmit disease such as Lyme. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that there are 300,000 new cases of this tick-borne disease every year. Now is the time to take certain steps to prevent tick bites and potentially Lyme Disease. Here are four tips to help keep you and your family safe this season.

 

  1. Create a Tick-Free Zone – Staying indoors during the height of the tick season is not a viable option, so try to create a tick-free zone around your home. Do this by keeping your lawn, garden, and plantings well-groomed and manicured. This can keep the tick habitat away from your property. In addition, consider a tick barrier by placing wood chips or bark mulch around the perimeter of your property. Some homeowners choose to have their property treated by professionals like our technicians here at Pro-Tech Lawn Care.
  2. Enjoy the Outdoors Safely – If your outdoor plans include being in an area that could have ticks, which is just about anywhere, dress wisely. Wear lightweight long pants and shirts, stay on hiking paths, and protect yourself with tick repellant such as DEET for skin and Permethrin for clothing.
  3. Perform Tick Checks – After being outdoors, make a habit of checking yourself, your partner, and children every evening. Ticks especially like to hide in armpits, along the neck and hairline, in the scalp, behind the knee, and along the waistline. Do not just rely on a sight check; also use your hands to feel for small specks that could be ticks.
  4. Remove Ticks – If you should find a tick, don’t panic! Attempt to remove the tick with tweezers. Getting the tick off in the first 24 hours can dramatically reduce the chance of transmitting Lyme Disease from tick to person.

 

While we encourage people to enjoy the outdoors every spring and summer, we also caution everyone to be vigilant for ticks by proactively treating as well as checking for ticks after each time outside. Call Pro-Tech Lawn Care for more information and help treating your yard this season. Call us at (603) 382-9644 or Toll Free: (800) 313-4733, or visit our website.