Keep Those Bugs Away From My BBQ: 4 Tips For Enjoying Pest-Free Summer Barbecues
It wouldn't be summer without backyard barbecues. It's a great time to take advantage of the good weather and grill your favorite outdoor foods. Barbecuing can also help keep your house cooler since you don't have to fire up the oven indoors. There's only one drawback: bugs. Everything from ants to mosquitos will smell the food and head towards it. This can make for unhygienic cooking conditions and an uncomfortable eating environment. How can you keep the bugs away from your barbecue? Take a look at some tips.
Keep Ants Out With Charcoal
You already have the charcoal out for the grill, so why not use some of it to keep ants away from the area where you're cooking and eating? There are certain substances that ants just won't walk through, and powdered charcoal is one of them. Before your bring any food outside, crush up some charcoal and spread it around any ant's nests you see in your yard, trapping them in. You can also create a perimeter around your grill or picnic tables, keeping any wandering ants out of those areas. Just remember that the perimeter needs to be unbroken in order to work – if you leave gaps, the ants will find their way through.
Using a propane grill or just low on charcoal? No problem. You can also use chalk, cinnamon, baby powder, black or cayenne pepper, turmeric, or cinnamon to create a barrier. Chances are good that you already have at least a few of those items in the house.
Infuse Your Meat With Flavor And Keep Bugs Away
Mosquitos and other bugs are repelled by certain herbs, including sage and rosemary. Humans, on the other hand, often enjoy these herbs. You can use this knowledge to keep the bugs away and make your grilled meat more flavorful.
Just toss a few branches of either fresh or dried sage or rosemary on top of your coals in the grill. This will create scented smoke that mosquitos, wasps, bees, and other bugs will avoid. And cooking on that grill will add the sage or rosemary flavor to your smoky grilled meat.
Adorn the Table With Bug-Repelling Condiments
You could always just avoid the bugs by eating indoors, but what fun would that be? Instead, put some things on your picnic table that will help keep bugs from getting too interested in it.
Before you set the table, wipe it down with white vinegar. Be sure to get the chairs and any stands where you'll be setting foods as well. Not only do bugs hate the smell, it's also a good way to clean outdoor furniture before anyone sits on it or eats off of it.
Ants avoid citrus peels, and bugs in general don't like the smell of lemons. Put a bowl of freshly cut lemons on the table. It looks and smells nice, you and your guests can use the lemon slices for iced tea or grilled fish, and it will help keep the bugs at bay.
Bugs also dislike garlic, onions, and chives. Coincidentally, these are all delicious toppings for potatoes and other barbecue-friendly foods. Add some bowls containing freshly cut garlic, onions, and chives to the table as well.
Protect The Indoors
Don't forget to protect the inside of your house. It's one thing to battle bugs for an afternoon barbecue, but you definitely don't want to be battling them inside the house as well. Make sure that you keep doors and windows closed when you're outside, and keep trips in and out to a minimum.
Preventative pest control can also help ensure that your summer barbecues go off without a hitch. Ask your pest control service about your options for treating your yard as well as the inside of your house. For more information or assistance, contact companies like Fowler Pest Control.