3 ways to mosquito-proof your home.

(Image: Wisegeek)

The first step in preventing pesky mosquitoes from multiplying is knowing their potential breeding spots. Every year, the National Environment Agency (NEA) identifies the top five breeding habitats, and the latest ones are:

  • Domestic containers, such as pails, buckets, bowls or any water containers that accumulate stagnant water.
  • Flower pot plates or trays.
  • Ornamental containers (vases).
  • Hardened soil and axils of potted plants.
  • Toilet bowls or cisterns.

Regularly dispose of dirty or stagnant water in all exposed containers.

Make it a habit to scrub flower pot trays and the insides of vases to remove mosquito eggs. Wash the roots and leaves of plants in vases, and change the water every other day. Loosen soil in potted pots as often as possible to prevent stagnant water from accumulating.

Use natural repellents

Citronella is the top pick for plants that can repel mosquitoes. Citronella oil is, in fact, used in most common mosquito repellents. The plant is easy to grow, and you can simply cut
the leaves from time to time,and crush them to release their strong aroma. Other plants that have mosquito-repellent qualities are catnip, lavender, lemon balm or horsemint, and basil. They all have certain smells that we find pleasant, but are repulsive to mozzies. Place these fragrant herbs on your porch or balcony, or near the front door. (Find out other natural pest repellents here.)

Mosquito-proof your home

Before going on a vacation, prevent your home from becoming a breeding ground for mosquitoes. Cover all toilet bowls and use masking tape to seal off all gully and floor traps. Turn over all water containers. Clear off blockages in your roof gutters and add BTI pesticide. Add sand granular insecticide to places where stagnant water cannot be removed, such as flower pots and vases.