Being Proactive About Wasp Prevention For Your Phoenix Yard
When you think of wasps, what do you picture? An angry swarm of brightly colored yellowjackets descending on your outdoor picnic? A hornet sting that landed a family member in the hospital? Maybe you recall how paper wasps or mud daubers are redecorating your outside spaces with garish nests in your doorway or porches?
Whatever you picture, the Green Home Pest Control team knows that wasps aren’t welcome in your Phoenix yard. That’s why being proactive is necessary to prevent wasps. The first step of wasp prevention is knowing what you’re up against.
Wasps In Phoenix
There are over 30,000 wasp species, and Phoenix is home to hundreds of those species. A few common wasps in the Phoenix area are western yellowjackets, Navajo and Arizona paper wasps, and black-and-yellow mud daubers.
Yellowjackets are easily identified by their bold yellow and black stripes. They thrive in large colonies that nest underground. You may catch them building a nest under the porch or whizzing out of a hole in your lawn. Paper wasps, also social wasps, make ornate paper-like nests with hexagonal cells, often hanging them from public areas. They will aggressively attack if their nests are disturbed. Mud daubers are solitary wasps that range in color from dull to bright. They rarely sting. But they do make their ghastly nests around your home. Once mud daubers vacate their old nests, other less friendly wasp species can move in.
Wasps are attracted to sweet foods and drinks, which is problematic for an outdoor patio space. A few of these little stingers will ruin an outdoor picnic. Any sudden movement prompts more aggressive wasps to administer a painful sting. If you swat or squish a social wasp, it releases a pheromone that triggers a defense strike from the colony. One wasp sting could be dangerous if you have an allergy, but six or seven stings could result in a hospital trip for anyone. Wasps can be dangerous to your health and your yard. Being proactive in preventing wasps can be accomplished with a few helpful tips.
The Law Of Wasp Attraction
Wasps feed on pollen for the most part. But flowering plants aren’t the only things that attract wasps to your yard. In the late summer and early fall, male wasps die off while the queen searches for a warm, safe place to start her new colony. Depending on the wasp, they might nest under your porch, in your yard, or hang their nest right from the patio awning. Mud daubers and paper wasps construct their nests out of wood fibers, so they will look for a good piece of real estate near their building materials. Here are a few more things that attract wasps to your yard:
- Sweet or sugary foods
- Oh boy, aren’t these in everyone’s yard? Don’t worry.
Wasp Prevention Tips
There’s good news for your Phoenix yard. A few changes can help you prevent wasps from invading your yard.
- Plant less wasp-friendly foliage: If you spend a lot of time on your porch or patio, avoid planting flowering plants nearest your house. Instead, opt for some wasp-repelling plants like wormwood, mint, basil, or marigolds. The scents of these plants may drive wasps away.
- Reduce harborage places for wasps to build their nests: Fill in any holes in your yard that could be home to ground-nesting wasps. If you have cracks or holes in doors or windows, shed walls, or siding, seal with caulking to halt entry.
- Cut off any readily available food sources: The hummingbird feeder may need to be moved off the front porch. Keep garbage and recycling receptacles sealed and away from the house. Limit any foods left out too long after an outdoor meal.
- Reduce insects in and around your home, especially spiders: Since wasps are parasites that feed insects to their larvae, keeping insects away will make your home less attractive to wasps. Spiders, especially, are the primary source of nutrients for wasp larvae.
These prevention tips are great. But what if you already have wasps in your yard?
If you have an existing wasp problem, do not attempt to take care of the problem on your own. Draw on the wealth of knowledge and expertise of the Green Home Pest Control Company team. Contact us at any time for advice and assistance.