(Family Features) A yard that is lush, green and free of weeds shows evidence of healthy lawn maintenance. However, many homeowners overlook an important aspect of lawn care that can affect not only the health of the yard, but also your family. Nuisance pests such as fleas, ticks, ants, spiders and more can transmit diseases and cause allergic reactions for both people and pets.
Your lawn is the perfect environment in which threatening weeds, diseases and pests can lurk, often with harmful consequences. In some cases, the primary damage may come in the form of these insects eating away at grass or the leaves of shrubs. Alternatively, grub worms or insect larvae may destroy grasses and plants at their roots.
Other lawn pests pose their greatest threat to you and your family. For example, Lyme disease, which is transmitted by the deer tick, is the most commonly reported tick-borne illness in the United States. Typical symptoms include fever, headache, fatigue and a skin rash. If left untreated, the infection can spread to joints, the heart and the nervous system. Currently, there are no protective vaccines for humans for tick-borne diseases.
Considering how quickly pest populations can multiply, being proactive in preventing and treating their presence is crucial. A regularly scheduled treatment plan is one of the best strategies to reduce your exposure to dangerous pests, and help defend your home and family from unwanted lawn visitors.
Look for a system designed to eliminate active pests and control successive generations. For example, the TruShield Lawn Pest Control Plan available through TruGreen includes a first application to significantly reduce the population of active lawn pests, and additional applications every four to six weeks for lasting control and ongoing protection.
“Using a professional to help control lawn pests should be part of a well-rounded, comprehensive defense program,” said Bob Mangan, TruGreen director of technical services. “Because ticks and other nuisance pests can congregate in backyards, it is especially important to help protect yourself and your family so that you can fully enjoy your outdoor time.”
In addition to a regular treatment program, these tips from the Centers for Disease Control can help reduce ticks in your yard:
Clear tall grasses and brush around homes and at the edge of lawnsPlace a barrier of wood chips or gravel between lawns and wooded areasMow the lawn frequently and keep leaves rakedStack wood neatly and in a dry area away from the house or lawnKeep playground equipment, decks and patios away from wooded areas and in a sunny location if possibleRemove any trash or debris from the yard that may give ticks a place to hide
For more information on protecting your lawn from pests, visit www.trugreen.com.
Photo courtesy of Getty Images (boys outside)