Your home is intricately connected to the natural world outside of the front door. Plants might grow on a garage wall while ants march onto your porch in the spring. Termites are nature’s desiccators. They break down wood in order to return nutrients back into the soil. However, you don’t want your property to have any damage caused by termites’ natural processes. Take a look at how you can protect your home from termites with a few simple steps.
Organize the Yard
There are numerous items that might decorate your yard, but are attractive to termites. Clear away some of these items, including:
- Wood gardening stakes
- Pruning debris
- Tree stumps
You might have a handy stockpile of wood logs for your fireplace in the yard, too. Although it makes logical sense to locate this wood just outside of your door, think like a pest control professional. Wood located close to the home might harbor termites that work their way into the structure. Locate your fire logs away from the home so that there’s no close proximity for termite invasions.
Prune the Foliage
Termites aren’t just attracted to wood. They also prefer moist conditions, as well. Ideally, remove any vines or other foliage that’s close or touching your home. These plants allow moisture to remain trapped for most of the day. This moisture attracts the termites, and gives them a stepping stone into your home. Areas that are most vulnerable include the structure’s vents. Clear the plants away from the vents and inspect them on a regular basis. Termites may want to enter the home at these vulnerable points.
Apply Alternative Mulch
Wood mulch is understandably a valuable resource in your garden. It adds aesthetic value and contributes to the soil’s nutrients as it breaks down. However, this wood is moist on most days from watering your garden. Damp wood is a perfect location for a growing termite colony. Use wood mulch far away from your home’s foundation, such as along a property’s perimeter. Select other mulch, such as gravel or rubber, to spread around your foundation. Termites won’t develop close to your home and invade it when wood mulch is 10 or 20 feet away from the structural wood.
Ventilate Crawl Spaces
If your home has a crawl space underneath it, moisture can easily become trapped there. Termites might build a colony under the home and enter through the wood supports buried in the ground. Ventilate the crawl spaces with ample vents that are securely covered. You may even want to install a small fan system in order to control the drafts. Be diligent about cleaning out the crawl space, too. If any wood pieces are trapped under the home, this area can become a haven for termites.
Observe the Yard
Termites can be obvious pests if you know what to look for. It’s important to observe your yard several times a month. Look for any wood shavings or unusual soil movement. You might see termite larvae crawling just outside of a subterranean tunnel by your foundation. If you find any evidence of termite activity, contact a pest control professional like UltraPro Pest Protection. These specialists can determine the termites’ ages and possible structural damage that’s involved. Treating termites early allows you to control the damage. Mature termites can fly, and they will invade any nearby structures with ease.
Clean Your Gutters
Debris and moisture that’s trapped in your rooftop gutters can also become a termite home. Ideally, hire professionals to clean out your gutters at least twice a year. Every piece of debris that’s removed is another termite habitat that can’t develop. Debris should also be removed from the downspouts whenever possible. Termites will use any prime location to their advantage. If you neglect your gutters, you may not realize that there is a termite problem until the roof and structural wood begin to creak.
If all of your termite protection steps fail, it’s time to contact a pest control professional like UltraPro Pest Protection. Specialized sprays can be applied to the structure and surrounding soil. In severe cases, the structure might be tented for an overall solution. Protect your home before any chemical options are necessary. Simply being diligent about your home’s organization and cleanliness can fight off those frustrating termites.