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2 Reasons Why You Should Avoid Overwatering Your Lawn

dogDo you water your lawn every day? If this is your routine, you’re probably caring for your lawn incorrectly. Your intentions are good, but more isn’t always better when its comes to water.

Overwatering can suffocate the grass. This is very stressful for your grass, and it can become more susceptible to damage. Orlando lawn care experts warn that overwatering is a mistake for two reasons.

1. Over Watering Attracts Pests and Disease

If you overwater your lawn, it’s possible for something called thatch to develop. Thatch is a spongy mat made of dead and living grass. It builds up between your lawn and the soil. Thatch is a concern because it provides a great habitat for lawn pests. Here are some of the pests that could make a cozy home in thatch:

  • Grubs: Beetle larvae that feed on the grass roots and create wilted, brown patches on lawns.
  • Spittlebugs: They feed on plant juices, distorting the shape of the grass and slowing its growth.
  • Mole crickets: These pests eat the roots of grass plants and can instantly stop growth.
  • Springtails: They’re found in excessively moist soil, and they feast on grass seedlings.

2. Fungal Growth Promotes Diseases

Overwatering can also lead to fungal growth. That’s because fungi love living in a moist environment. You may not be as concerned about fungal growth as you are with lawn bugs, but fungi can cause big problems for your lawn. Fungal diseases can compromise your lawn and harm its appearance. Here are some fungal diseases to watch out for:

  • Superficial fairy ring: It causes dark green rings to form on your lawn. A hardened layer of soil forms and keeps water from penetrating the soil, which can kill the grass.
  • Gray leaf spot: It slows the growth of St. Augustine grass, and can even kill large areas of the lawn.
  • Dollar spot: This fungal disease kills turf at the rights. This leads to unsightly scars on your lawn.
  • Red thread: It causes dead patches of grass with a red or pink tinge.

Tips for Keeping Your Lawn Healthy

No one wants their lush, green lawn to be taken over by bugs or fungal diseases. To keep your lawn looking its best, be careful not to overwater it. Lawns only need about one to two inches of water per week, so adjust your automatic sprinklers accordingly. To keep fungi at bay, water in the morning, not at night. Of course, it’s also important to properly fertilize and mow your lawn.

Overwatering can take a big toll on your lawn, so be careful with your sprinklers. The Orlando lawn care professionals at Apex can help you keep your lawn healthy and properly watered, contact us today to learn more!

Ticking Time Bomb: How Ticks Deteriorate Your Health and Home

tickTicks are one of the scariest bugs you can encounter in Florida. They can live in your grass, bushes, or in animal’s fur. They latch onto your skin and feed on your blood, and as they feed, they can transfer all kinds of diseases. Tampa pest control professionals recommend being wary of these tick-borne diseases.

Colorado Tick Fever

Colorado tick fever is a viral infection you can get from tick bites. As the name suggests, it’s most often seen in Colorado. It can still occur in other parts of the United States, including Florida. It usually starts three to six days after the tick bite occurs. The viral infection causes a sudden fever that goes away and then comes back. It can also cause a headache, muscle aches, nausea, and other flu-like symptoms.

Relapsing Fever

Relapsing fever is an infectious disease you can get from ticks. Symptoms start three to 11 days after the tick bite. The symptoms can go away, and then return several days later. Symptoms can include a high fever, headache, rapid heart rate, and rash.

Babesiosis

Ticks can spread parasitic diseases, too. Babesiosis is one of these diseases. It’s spread by deer ticks. The disease doesn’t always cause symptoms, but when symptoms occur, they appear one to four weeks after a tick bite. People with this disease can feel malaise, tiredness, decreased appetite, or muscle aches.

Tularemia

Tularemia is a disease that usually occurs in animals, but people can get it if they’re bitten by an infected tick. Mosquitoes and deer fly can also spread the disease. Within 21 days of getting bitten by a tick, symptoms can start. These symptoms can be severe. People with the disease could have an open sore at the bite site, a severe headache, or a sudden, high fever.

Ehrlichiosis

Ehrlichiosis is often found in the southern United States, so it’s a concern for Floridians. It’s an infectious disease that people can get from ticks. Symptoms can start one to 21 days after being bitten by a tick. The symptoms are flu-like and can include a fever, headache, and general ill feeling. A purple or red rash can also occur.

Protecting Yourself

These diseases can be treated, but it’s best to avoid getting bitten by ticks in the first place. When you’re outdoors, take precautions like tucking your pants into your socks and wearing insect repellent. Indoors, check your pet’s living spaces for signs of ticks.

Ticks are scary, but you don’t have to let them hurt your health. The Tampa pest control experts at Apex can help you stay healthy by keeping ticks at bay. Read our blog for tips on how to rid your home and your animal from unwanted ticks and more!

Pests Could Infiltrate the Party

balloons-1761634_1920As the sun beats down, the days grow longer, and the kids are out of school, we tend to spend some additional time outside. Whether you are grilling out, hosting a pool party, or getting together at a local park, summertime tends to be party time. As the leaders in Orlando pest control, we thought we’d provide some tips for having a pest-free celebration.

Over the years, we have grown in our knowledge of pest control, and we sure have seen the impacts pests can make immediately just with their presence at summer parties. Here are some baseline tips that can be incorporated into all types of celebrations:

  • Food Inside: Even if you are having an outdoor party, trying to keep the majority of the food inside is a good idea. Pests of all type are primarily attracted to food sources; so keeping the attractant indoor is a great step.
  • Clear Cups: In Florida, particularly, you never quite know what may have buzzed into your drink while you weren’t paying attention (or while you were preoccupied with the grill). And you may not know until it’s too late with cans and plastic solo cups. Drinking out of a clear cup might be a wise choice whether hosting indoors or out.
  • Seal Garbage: Food leftovers becomes garbage, and both attract pests in droves. Sealing up your garbage as quickly as possible and moving it far away from where you may have a party going helps to keep interruptions from pests down.
  • Clean Up: It also helps with the ease of cleanup at the end of the party if you have some things taken care of during it. A thorough cleanup of a house or backyard party will prevent future pest problems in the weeks afterward. Try to think of everything: trash, counter surfaces, and debris left in the backyard.
  • Citronella: One thing you’re almost certain to encounter during an outdoor party in Florida is mosquitoes. Sprays help and long clothing is recommended… but neither may be the best choice for a pool party. Try natural citronella, either the candles or the plants themselves, for an added layer of protection.

 

A pest-free party is the best kind, and following a few simple steps can get you there. For a more complete evaluation, always keep in mind that the Orlando pest control experts at Apex are just a phone call away. We offer a free, no-obligation quote and will always get back to you within 24 hours.

Temperatures Rise & Spiders Hide Inside

spider-1448506_1920Florida summers are truly like no other, and it’s difficult to describe to people not from here the unique changes that occur over our hot and humid months. But you don’t need to explain them to spiders; they understand the situation quite well. Professional Tampa pest control can be essential as the seasons change. With that in mind, below is a list of the some of the more common Florida spiders and where you may find them around your home.

Spiders move indoors and closer to homes for the same reason everything else does; they are looking for cooler areas. And for spiders, cool and dark is the most preferred. Summer also brings the wettest months, and this drives all pests (spiders included) to seek dryer ground. That can often mean your home. Be on the lookout for these five in particular:

Black Widow

Along with the brown recluse, which we’ll get to, the black widow is one of the more dangerous spiders in Florida. They are highly venomous and particularly hazardous to pets and small children. Black widows are drawn to dark and cluttered places and commonly can be found in low-traffic areas just outside your home.

Brown Recluse

Perhaps more dangerous than even a black widow, the bite of a brown recluse can lead to a long and painful recovery. They are prevalent in cluttered areas around your home: piles of wood, sheds, etc. They can also commonly be found in attics.

Jumping Spider

An athletic spider variation (as the name would suggest), jumping spiders wedge themselves into the small nooks and crannies of your home. This could include in the cracks of hardwood flooring, under bookshelves or around window molding.

Domestic House Spider

Common in all areas of the home, but prevalent in particular around water sources (like kitchens and bathrooms). They can also be found in and around furniture or even in window shades and blinds.

Southern House Spider

Southern house spiders are found all over Florida and may be one of the more common spiders you see while doing a little summer cleaning. Although harmless, they can still be a scare to the arachnophobia inclined. These spiders crave darkness and will rarely be found in illuminated areas of your home. Check corners, attics, closets, and any other indoor area that is bathed in perpetual darkness.
You as a homeowner can do quite a bit towards keeping spiders in check this summer. Constant vigilance is necessary, and caution must be used around the dangerous brown recluse and black widow. But a more carefree way to take care of a summer spider issue is to contact the Tampa pest control experts at Apex. Our decades of experience in the local area will pay off for you and provide constant peace of mind. Call today at (866) 675-4070.

Florida Pests That Call Swimming Holes Home

sunset-1617570_1920Summertime in Florida is the prime season to find the nearest place to cool down. And in the interior counties of the state, some of our pristine ponds, springs, and lakes tend to fit this bill. But with this great abundance of natural swimming holes, we also have a wealth of creatures that live in those very same places. Experts in Orlando pest control, we at Apex put together a trio you should be on the lookout for the most over these warm and humid summer days.

From ladybugs to caterpillars and every bee, spider, fly or bug between, almost any insect can end up in your swimming pool water. For these three common Florida pests, the hot summer months also provoke a change in behavior. And for some of them, they are simply uncommon to find in our colder and drier winter months.

Mosquitoes: They bloom in the summer, and it all starts with water. Any lake, spring, or even river will be the spot to have maximum concentrations of this relentless pest. This will be true of all times of the year, but the summer is the peak. This summer, we’ve had a dry and warm start that has led into an extremely wet June and July. That’s led to a sudden explosion in mosquito numbers. Remember to use bug spray, wear long clothing, and avoid being outdoors during dusk and dawn. Mosquitos typically thrive on stagnant water so if your pool pump is broken, it is imperative to take steps before it gets out of hand.

Water Boatmen: Water Boatmen are unusual among water pests in that they are mostly non-predatory, feeding on aquatic plants and algae instead of insects and vertebrates. Most can be found in freshwater ponds, streams, and lakes that have aquatic life, primarily feeding on plants, including algae and other vegetation, and they will not bite. A few species of Water Boatmen are predatory, but the majority are herbivorous.

Back Swimmers: These unusual water bugs are only slightly larger than Water Boatmen with beetle-like legs. Back Swimmers are unique in that they swim upside down and sting like a bee. They are also predators to Water Boatmen, so your pool will most likely not have one without the other.

  • Shock pool water with chlorine
  • Add algaecide
  • Clean inside and underneath water filters
  • Use a water skimmer after chlorine treatment

These are a few of many precautionary tips you should take note of when looking for a place to cool down this summer. For more information and to learn about the services we provide, always feel free to contact the experts in Orlando pest control at (866)675-4070.

Alleviate Pest Issues with These Home Improvements

florida-home-1744737_1920Summer is a great time to tackle home improvement projects. You might be making a list of all the projects you want to get finished this summer. Whether you’re doing improvements for yourself or to get your house ready for sale, you can alleviate pest issues. The Tampa pest control experts at Apex recommend adding these three tasks to your list to help control pests around the house.

Seal Water Leaks

Water leaks are a big problem. You probably already know that leaks can cause expensive water damage, but you may not know they can attract bugs, too. Pests like cockroaches are drawn to water sources. If you’ve already planned to do some work in your kitchen or bathrooms, fixing water leaks is an easy addition to your to-do list. Water can leak through areas like the frame of your shower door, through your tiles, or through the rims of your sinks. If you find any leaks during your home improvement projects, use caulk to seal them.

Seal or Upgrade Windows

If your windows are old, they may leak air or water. When windows leak air, your conditioned air will leak out of the house. That drives up your energy costs during hot Florida summers. If windows leak water, water will come in when it rains. When your windows are leaking, pests may be able to sneak inside. To keep bugs outdoors where they belong, seal your windows. To do this, all you need to do is caulk the windows and replace weatherstripping. Another option is to replace your windows. The latter option can help bump up the value of your home, so it’s a good choice if you’re getting ready to sell.

Clean the Gutters

When was the last time you cleaned out your gutters? This isn’t a fun job, so it’s easy to put it off in favor of more enjoyable home improvement projects. Gutters should be cleaned at least twice a year, and more often if you have a lot of trees on your property. When gutters get clogged, mosquitoes can use the standing water to breed. Water can overflow around your home’s foundation, and termites can be drawn to this moisture. Excess water can also lead to problems like rotten wood.

When you’re working on home improvement projects this summer, don’t forget about these three tasks. The Tampa pest control experts at Apex know that your home and family will thank you if you add these tasks to your to-do list. If these improvements don’t take care of your pest issues, contact Apex Pest Control today.

Avoid Bed Bugs This Summer

Are you looking to avoid bed bugs? Keeping bed bugs away is a lot easier than getting rid of an existing infestation. That’s why many Americans are changing their behaviors to prevent bed bug infestations. 25 percent have checked their hotel room for bed bugs, while 12 percent have changed or canceled a trip because of bed bug worries.

You don’t need to go on vacation to pick up bed bugs; they can be found in everyday locations, too. The Orlando pest control professionals at Apex have some tips for everyday bed bug prevention.

At Home

Bed bugs can enter your home through second-hand furniture, especially mattresses and box springs. Before you bring any second-hand furniture into your home, check it thoroughly for signs of bed bugs.

Inspect your home regularly for signs of bed bugs. Pay attention to areas where you and your pets sleep. Check your sheets for blood spots or live bed bugs, and check your pets’ sleeping areas, too.

In the Office

While bed bugs are thought of as a household pest, they can be found in workplaces, too. At work, vacuum and clean regularly. Messes and clutter give bed bugs a place to hide. When you receive shipments at work, carefully check the items for signs of bed bugs. Don’t accept any infested shipments.

Bed bugs can also hitch a ride on employees. Employers should have a policy in place for people who think they have a bed bug infestation at home.

While Shopping

Surprisingly, you can even encounter bed bugs in clothing stores. They can hitch a ride on other shoppers and infest the stores. To protect yourself, inspect clothing for signs of bed bugs before you try it on. Don’t buy anything that has unusual stains, sticky white eggs, or shed skins on it.

When you get home, immediately wash your new purchases. Use hot water to kill any bed bugs. If your new clothes are delicate, you can steam or dry clean them, instead.

To keep bed bugs out of your home, take precautions every day, not just when you’re on vacation. If you think you’ve brought bed bugs home with you, contact the Orlando Pest control experts at Apex right away for an inspection. For all your pest control tips and tricks, check out our blog!

Creating a Pest-Free Picnic

aesthetic-2093136_1920(1)Summer is finally here, which means it’s time for summertime picnics. When you throw a picnic, you don’t want any uninvited guests to show up and ruin your fun. Pests like ants, bees, mosquitoes, or ticks can crash your picnic and ruin everyone’s good time. To make sure only your invited guests can come to your picnic, follow these tips from the Orlando pest control technicians at Apex.

Choose a Logical Location

No location is 100 percent pest-free, but some locations are more suited for picnics than others. Before you set up your picnic, check the area to make sure there’s nothing nearby that could attract pests. Steer clear of stagnant water, as that can attract mosquitoes. Areas with lots of flowers are pretty, but they’re not the best spots for picnics either. Flowering plants attract stinging insects like bees and wasps. You should also stay away from areas with visible ant colonies.

Take Precautions to Avoid Stinging Insects

Nothing ruins a fun picnic as fast as uninvited stinging insects. Stinging insects are attracted to sweet things, so it’s a good idea to avoid wearing perfume. If one of your guests is allergic to stinging insects, you could avoid bringing any sweet foods, too. Stinging pests can sneak into cans or bottles, so to stay safe, drink out of clear cups. Once stinging insects find a good food source, they’ll keep coming back for more. After your picnic is over, clean up thoroughly. If you leave food or drink residue behind, your great picnic spot could be taken over by stinging insects.

Wear Bug Spray

Do you forget to apply bug spray before your picnics? You’re not alone. Many people forget this step, but it can go a long way towards making your picnics more fun. Bug spray makes you less attractive to pests, so you can enjoy your picnic in peace. To avoid contaminating your tasty food, remember to apply bug spray before you open any food containers. If you’re planning to be outside for a while, you may need to reapply the bug spray.

Be Aware

While some types of pests will sneak up on your picnic, others are fairly easy to see. Be aware of your surroundings and keep an eye out for bugs. To make bugs easier to spot, try using a light-colored picnic blanket. For example, ants can easily be seen crawling towards your food. Ticks can be seen on your blanket, or you may notice them after they bite you.

Pests don’t have to ruin your summertime picnics. By following these tips from the Orlando pest control experts at Apex, you can throw great picnics all summer long. Interested in preventing even more pests from invading? Contact us today to set up a free, no-obligation inspection.

4 Unwanted Outdoor Pests

people-1560569_1920It’s summer, and that means everyone is spending more time outdoors. Now that the kids are out of school, they’re ready to get outside and enjoy summer activities. While many of Florida’s insects are harmless, there are a few that you don’t want your kids making friends with. Before your kids head outdoors for summer fun, make them aware of pests to avoid. Tampa pest control experts recommend steering clear of these four unfriendly insects.

  • Mosquitoes

Mosquito bites are annoying and itchy, but that’s not the worst part. These insects can spread a lot of dangerous diseases, like West Nile virus or Zika virus. To control mosquitoes on your property, drain any standing water to keep mosquitoes from breeding. Make sure your kids cover their skin with clothing before they head outdoors. Teach them to put on insect repellant before they go out to play.

  • Fire Ants

If you’ve ever had a run in with fire ants, you know they’re bad news. These aggressive ants are well-known for their painful, burning stings. The pain can last for a while, which can put quite a damper on your kids’ summer fun. Before your kids head out to play, teach them how to avoid fire ants. Usually, fire ant nests look like visible mounds of dirt, so tell your kids not to play near mounds of dirt in the lawn.

  • Stinging Pests

Stinging pests like bees and wasps can ruin a fun summer day in a hurry. Kids who try to make friends with a bee or wasp could end up with a painful sting. For kids who are allergic, stings can be very dangerous. Bees and wasps sting when they’re provoked. Getting too close to a nest or swatting at stinging pests can make them feel like they need to defend themselves. Teach your kids to keep their distance from stinging pests.

  • Ticks

The warm weather of the Southeast is a prime habitat for a number of different kinds of ticks. Ticks hang out in long grass or other foliage and wait for people or animals to brush up against them. Then, they latch on and feed on our blood. Since ticks can carry diseases, their bites are a big concern. Long-sleeved shirts and pants can help protect your kids from tick bites. Light colored clothing is best since it makes spotting ticks easier. Once your kids come inside for the night, check their skin for ticks.

This summer, your kids are bound to make some new friends. Hopefully, none of these potentially dangerous pests are included. To learn more ways to protect your whole family from pests, contact the Tampa pest control experts at Apex today.

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Don’t Let Moths Eat Your Favorite Shirt

dresses-53319_1920Imagine your disappointment when you pull your favorite shirt out of your closet, only to discover that it’s covered in holes. If you have clothes moths, this situation is sadly common. Moth larvae love to nibble on our favorite clothes and ruin our wardrobes. Orlando pest removal experts are well acquainted with these wardrobe nuisances.

Signs of Moth Issues

How do you know if you have clothes moths? An obvious sign is holes in your clothes. When moth larvae feed on fabric, they leave behind irregularly shaped holes. Damaged fabrics can also have silken cases, silken threads, or even fecal pellets on them. Gross! Another clue that you have a moth problem is a musty smell in your closet. You could also notice webbing in your closet. You could even see adult moths running over the surface of your clothes.

Tips for Prevention

This National Moth Week, July 20-30, we want to help you keep your clothes safe from destructive moths. There are a number of ways to keep your closet moth-free.

  1. Usually, moth eggs enter homes from outdoors. If you’ve worn a wool, fur, or feather garment outdoors, brush it off before you enter your house. This helps keep moth eggs outdoors where they belong.
  2. Moths are attracted to the smell of sweat, so make sure to wash your clothes before you store them. Delicate clothes can be dry cleaned, instead. When your clothes and closet are clean, moths have less reason to move in.
  3. Proper storage of your clothes is also essential. Keep your closet well ventilated and eliminate humidity. Since Florida is the most humid state in the country, you may need to get a dehumidifier.
  4. Hang your clothes on cedar hangers, since moths are repelled by cedar. If you have any clothing you don’t wear often, store it in airtight packages for even more protection.

Dealing with Moth Infestations

By following the simple steps above, you can keep your clothes safe from moths. However, once moths move in, mitigating them can be more difficult. Some people try to handle moths on their own with mothballs, but these aren’t a great idea. Aside from the terrible smell, mothballs are toxic. Even one mothball can seriously harm a small child or a pet, so it’s best to keep them out of your house. A moth infestation is a great reason to bring in pest control experts.

Have moths taken over your closet? It’s time to get rid of them before they have a chance to ruin all your clothes. The Orlando pest removal experts at Apex can help you evict the moths and take back your closet. Contact us today for a free, no-obligation quote.


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The technicians were incredibly friendly, professional, knowledgeable and fast. Gold stars for customer care.
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