Summer in Florida means long, balmy evenings outside with friends and family. But a fun summer evening spent in our outdoor living spaces can quickly turn sour when an onslaught of mosquitoes takes over your backyard. They buzz annoyingly in your ear, cause itchy hives, and can even carry infectious diseases. But even without those illnesses to worry about, the sheer annoyance of mosquitos can ruin your evening.

outdoor spaces

Luckily, there are several ways to protect yourself and your family from infectious mosquito bites while you are trying to enjoy your outdoor living spaces.

  1. Eliminate Potential Breeding Areas
    Mosquitoes need standing water in which to lay their eggs. This doesn’t have to be a large pool—something as small as water collected on a plastic tarp or in a bottle cap will serve them just fine. If you notice a large number of mosquitoes in your yard, go through the entire area and get rid of any standing water you see. Try to remove any potential pooling areas on the ground by filling dips or divots with topsoil and planting grass seed so that water doesn’t continue to gather there. Keep in mind, though, that if your neighbors have standing water – if you live near a pond or wetland – you will likely still see a lot of mosquitoes despite your attempts to eliminate them on your property.
  2. Mow the Lawn Regularly
    Mosquitoes like tall grass where they can hide and stay cool during the day’s hottest hours. By mowing your yard regularly and getting rid of brush piles, mosquitoes will find it less attractive and (hopefully) move on to a shadier property. Cutting the grass will also help it dry more quickly, meaning that puddles on the ground will evaporate quickly enough to prevent mosquito larvae from maturing.
  3. Screens are a Big Help.
    Use a fine mesh screen on all your windows, doors, and back porch. The screens will let you enjoy the fresh air blowing through your home but can keep any mosquitoes out. Be sure to perform regular maintenance on them as well—any small tears or pulled-up edges will let insects sneak through. Patch kits are a relatively inexpensive way to repair small holes, but it may be best to replace the entire panel if need be.
  4. Use a Fan.
    Fans are proven to be very effective at keeping mosquitoes at bay. They don’t need to spin very fast—just a consistent soft breeze is enough to cut mosquito landings down by 40%. Have a trusted contractor install a ceiling fan on your covered deck or patio, or keep a standing oscillating fan outside when you want to sit on the porch.
  5. Cover-Up.
    Physical barriers are effective protection against mosquitoes. Wear long sleeves and long pants to prevent the insects from being able to access your skin. You can also use mosquito repellent—even if you are not a fan of the strongest types that include DEET, you can still find effective options like lemongrass or citronella.
  6. Avoid Peak Times
    Mosquitoes are most active at dusk and dawn. Avoid going outside at these times if you can. Once the sun is down, mosquito numbers start dwindling, and you should find it much more comfortable to enjoy your evening.

There are many ways to design your outdoor spaces, and asking expert installers for help is a great place to start. From outdoor fireplaces to screened-in lanais, West Coast Design Build Florida can help you to fight mosquitos and fully enjoy life in South Florida.