Mosquitos can make gardening in summer miserable. To cut down on their population, make a few of these “traps” for them to lay their eggs in. This won’t kill existing mosquitos, but it will eliminate some of the next generations by diverting their egg-laying activities.
1. Select a water-holding container and fill it with rain water.
2. Add Mosquito Bits or a Mosquito Dunk. (Bits will need to be replaced weekly, while the Dunk should last about a month.) Note that Mosquito Bits/Dunks conatin BTI BTI, a bacteria toxic only to mosquito larvae, which is not harmful to people, wildlife, plants, fish, or pets.
3. Add chopped up grass or a few weeds to the water and stir. Studies show the mosquitos are more attracted to breed in water with a bit of plant decay in it, rather than totally clear water or very dirty water. (Who knew they were so picky!?!)
4. Add a decorative element to the water garden. You can put in floating water plants like Water Lettuce or Water Hyacinth. You could add stones or pebbles, if it is a clear or shallow container. You can float cut flowers in it like this gorgeous example from Chanticleer Garden
Thanks to Peg Bier of Merrifield Garden Center for the original idea. I have been experimenting and perfecting on it all this summer.
This is a monthly blog series on DIY projects for the beginning home gardener. Look for the other installments in this DIY blog series by putting “DIY” in the search box here at washingtongardener.blogspot.com.