Summer time is many things in Arkansas. Play time, swim time, grill time. Unfortunately, it’s also bug time. Here are five things you can do at home to cut down on those unwanted summer pests (crazy uncles notwithstanding), and make your home and yard as unwelcome to them as possible:   Trim back those limbs and bushes brushing up against the house. They may look good, but it’s a welcome sign for critters. Literally, you’re extending them a hand and saying, “Come on in.” You don’t need to get rid of those bushes in front of the house, just keep ’em trimmed. No touchey house. And any low-hanging limbs over the roof need to come down, too. They’re a bridge for bugs, plus a storm is likely to send ’em through the roof one day anyway. While we’re at it, keep your yard cut low and raked, and clean out those flower beds. Invest in a screen door. Especially if you’ve got kids and/or dogs running in and out of the back door. Every so often, check your screen doors or any window screens for rips or tears. We think of bugs finding nooks and crannies in which to come inside, and they do, but the simple truth is that a lot of bugs enter right through the front or back door that’s left wide open. Wear bug spray. Hey, if we sound just like your mom back in the day, applying layer after layer of sunscreen, we can live with that. Fact is, bugs won’t be attracted to you and therefore not so liable to follow you inside. Check the perimeter of your house for any potential entryways. Now we’re starting to sound like your dad. Men (and women), survey your castle for any loose mortar around the foundation and seal any cracks or holes. Look for old weather stripping or rotting shingles on the roof. Let’s make it hard for bugs to get in — make ’em work for it. Standing water? That’s a standing NO. Seriously, this may be the best way to attract bugs…and rodents…and snakes….Got a bird bath? Hello, mosquito incubator. Refresh it weekly if you can. Standing water can show up where you might not think it could — pool covers, flower pots, buckets, barrels, even tire swings. Those plastic wading pools for kids and/or dogs? Dump it when finished and store on its side.     These represent just a few things you can do to make your home less inviting for summer pests. So, invite crazy Uncle Sal over for burgers on the grill if you want; just make sure the bugs stay in the woods.   Legacy’s organic home and yard treatments can make sure your house represents a “no vacancy” sign for bugs. We can’t, however, do anything about crazy Uncle Sal.

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