Many of us have raked small insects into piles of leaves, bagged them and stored them in the garage for a short time, which can provide a direct route to the kitchen or laundry room.
Other critters, like mice, hang around, hoping a door will be left open; it only takes a second to run inside. This happened to me last November, and I was quickly on my way to the hardware store, where the clerk asked me if I wanted a humane type of trap or one of the sticky ones. No sympathy from me; I took the sticky contraption.
Boxelder bugs will congregate on the south side of houses, soaking up the sun and looking for screens with holes or basement cracks as way to get inside. When smashed they can stain walls or curtains and emit an unpleasant smell.
Aphids, roly poly bugs and spiders can enter your home by riding in on indoor plants that have been enjoying the outdoors during the summer. Spraying these plants with water will keep these want-to-be guests outside for the winter.
How do the fruit flies that hang around our sinks and garbage disposals get into the house? There is no answer, but a bowl of vinegar on the counter top encourages them to drown themselves.
A vacuum cleaner has been suggested to suck up the Asian beetle (ladybug), which finds its way into your summer porches.
Finding pests like centipedes, silverfish or the dreaded spider makes all of us a little nervous. Make sure the faucets don’t leak and the dehumidifier is keeping the basement dry.
Spiders are usually found in corners of rooms and windows, under furniture and in basements or garages. Weekly broom action or using the extension of the vacuum cleaner will rid rooms of this insect.
There is one last planting to do before cleaning up your garden tools. Garlic, which is easy to grow, should be planted now through mid-October for harvest in July. Full sun is needed, and since garlic is a heavy feeder, the soil should be amended with compost. Place the cloves 3-5 inches apart and 2-3 inches deep with the pointed tip upward. Cover the soil with several inches of straw or shredded leaves. Water regularly until Thanksgiving.
When spring arrives, gently remove the mulch and fertilize. Hopefully, the vampires will not try to get the cloves on Halloween.
“Listen the wind is rising, and the air is wild with leaves. We’ve had our summer evenings, now for October eves!”
– Humbert Wolfe.