10 Natural Ways To Keep Ticks Out Of Your Garden
Ticks, as small as they are they can be incredibly dangerous. As many as half are infected with Lyme Disease which results in headaches and fever and if left untreated can cause joint problems, memory issues, reflux, and panic attacks.
While you may not be able to prevent you or your child from being assailed by ticks in the woods or at the lake, you can protect your lawn.
Here are ten ways to prevent ticks on your property.
1. Create a barricade
Your barrier doesn’t have to be an obscenely large fence or stone wall, it can be as simple as a yard of wood chips, sand, sawdust, or crushed stone.
Barriers are going to be most useful if you live near the woods or forested environment. Ideally, you should have a yard of length separating your lawn from the woods.
At this point in the game, sawdust from the Alaska yellow cedar tree seems to be the most effective.
2. Exploit sunlight
You can’t control the sun, which in retrospect is probably a good thing, as I would be sunbathing in my bikini every day, but what you can do is prune back your trees and stray limbs.
Give your lawn as much sun as it can possibly stand. Ticks thrive in areas of high humidity and are attracted to areas high in moisture.
3. Adopt and raise chickens
I recommend checking your city guidelines before going out and buying a dozen chicks, but if you’re in the clear go for it.
Raising chickens allows you a renewable source of eggs and they’re tick-eating machines.
Depending on the number of chickens you invest in, you can also sell the excess eggs to friends, family, and coworkers. Cha-ching!
4. Keep woodpiles neat and orderly
Sloppy wood piles are ideal hidey-holes for ticks.
There’s shade, moisture, and shelter all because you don’t want to get rid of the rotting wood that could be used for some impossible project five years down the road. Please just get rid of it.
5. Make use of organic pesticides
Garlic…if it’s strong enough to keep Dracula away and ticks don’t stand a chance. You can plant garlic and its fragrance will deter ticks and mosquitos, but as a matter of opinion, a garlic spray is more effective.
Just mince four garlic cloves, combine with mineral oil, let sit for a day and strain out the garlic.
Add that oil to a teaspoon of dish soap and two cups of water. Fill a spray bottle, shake well, and test s small amount on your plants.
Wait a day or so to make sure the garlic won’t damage any of your garden. If your plants start to yellow, dilute your mixture, wait a week and try again.
6. Make paths uncomfortable for naked feet
I’m torn on this method as I could go every day without shoes in the summer, but if you really need to keep ticks at bay, this might be the way.
Ticks hate to cross paths lined with coarse items like gravel or wood chips about as much as we like walking barefoot on shards of glass.
Using gravel and wood chips as a buffer between your lawn and forested areas will help to keep ticks away from you and your loved ones.
7. Prevent host animals from getting in
Deer are among the biggest culprits for harboring ticks and while they may prance off as soon as they see you, that doesn’t stop their ticks from taking up residence in your lawn.
Fences are a good fix, but there are standards you need to follow if you want it to be effective.
Your fence should be at least eight feet tall, while some deer can clear eight feet planting thorny bushes will take away their landing zone.
There should also be no gaps bigger than six by six inches. In addition to the fence, it never hurts to add some deer-repellent plants.
Plants with strong odors and irritating surfaces tend to keep deer at bay.
8. Get rid of all trash and debris
No, I don’t think you have piles of garbage stinking up your yard (but it you do, get rid of it.) What I mean for the most part is leaf litter.
Rake it up and get rid of it; decomposing leaves are great little hiding places for nasty little ticks.
Don’t throw your grass clippings and leaves into the garbage, instead add them to your compost pile to enhance your soil.
Make sure to get rid of stick piles as well, a clean yard will not only keep your yard clear of ticks but other harmful insects and rodents alike.
9. Plant American beautyberry bushes
American Beautyberry Bushes, (try saying that five times fast) are a deciduous shrub native to the southeastern woods.
The compounds found in this bush are known to have the amazing ability to repel insects, ticks included.
It grows easily in moist areas with partial shade. They also offer a pleasing aesthetic when their clusters of purple berries ripen in the fall.
10. Mow your yard regularly
Seems obvious right, tall grass and bushes, especially those that are at the edge of your yard are ticks’ favorite hiding spot.
Keeping your lawn cut short will minimize the chances of ticks crawling around your yard and latching to any people or animals.
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