Fight mosquitoes naturally - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Fight mosquitoes naturally

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May 10, 2006

Albany--Hot weather and rain create the perfect environment for the pests we love to hate. Mosquitoes may soon take over South Georgia but if you're tired of the usual spray and swat methods, there may be some natural ways to deal with the problem.

Alice Surface takes much pride in her yard. "It just relaxes me versus being inside," says Surface. So you can find her outside almost everyday either tending to the garden or mowing along the green.

"Oh yeah, take advantage of the cool weather," says Surface. She loves it but as the weather gets warmer something she doesn't love will soon take over. Alice playfully calls them skeeters.

"I don't like them," says Surface. Adding to that dislike is what she lives and works by, a canal, which doesn't make it any easier to deal with the mosquito problem.

However, there may be some ways to fight them naturally. We went to the nursery for a cure. "Mosquito plant, it's in the herb family actually," says Martin Edwards of Mark's Greenhouses Nursery and Landscaping.

The mosquito plant actually has the fragrance of citranella, a scent that mosquitoes hate. "We sell quite a few. We sold quite a few already," says Martin.

And that's not it. Something else at the nursery could also repel those pesky mosquitoes. Herbs, grasses and plants like rosemary, marigolds, pennyroyal and catnip can make mosquito season a little more tolerable.

"This will be a good supplement to other measures that can be taken," says Martin. Of course, there are your normal measures. Mosquito experts make sure you remember those.

"Make sure you have tight fitting screens, eliminate or destroy tires. If you have open barrels or buckets or cans, you can store them upside down," says District Epidemiologist Jacqueline Jenkins.

Alice's normal mosquito measure is turning her can of OFF upside down. She sprays before each mow of the yard. "That's all I know," says Surface. But now she's a little more educated about some new ways to fight those skeeters.

"I'll try anything to keep from getting bit by mosquitoes," says Surface. Anything that helps just might be nature's perfect cure.

Something else that can help the mosquito problem? Bats. They eat mosquitoes. So do Purple Martins, so it might not hurt to place a bird house in your yard.

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