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Why Do Cockroaches Come Out At Night?

Why do cockroaches come out at night

When you wake up before the sun rises and go to make your coffee, you’re not expecting to discover a cockroach in the cabinet next to your coffee grounds. Chances are that in your pre-caffeinated state, your reactions aren’t quite as sharp, resulting in your kitchen visitor scurrying away before you can find anything to smash it with. If someone had asked, you would have sworn that you didn’t have any bug problems—especially roaches. But you also know that you usually don’t spot one of these creatures, unless it’s dark.

So, why do cockroaches come out at night? The short answer is that, like other nocturnal animals, roaches have evolved to forage for food and water in low-light environments, since these conditions help them avoid predators. In this blog post, we will explore cockroach activity patterns in more detail and offer you tips on how to keep these pests away from … Read Full Post »

Can Mosquitoes Bite Through Clothes?

can mosquitoes bite through clothes

Mosquitoes are a problem for most of the year in the warmer parts of the country. But even so, it can feel like they come back earlier each year. You thought you were at least going to have a few weeks of relaxation in beautiful weather before they showed up again, but these bloodsucking pests had different plans. As you’re relaxing in your backyard you may be wondering: Can mosquitoes bite through clothes? Will I be safe from these biting insects if I just cover up?

Mosquitoes prefer to access blood directly through the skin, but that doesn’t mean they won’t use their proboscis to get to the blood through the clothes you are wearing. Generally speaking, loose, long-sleeved and light-colored clothes significantly reduce the chances of your getting a mosquito bite. That being said, they do not completely remove the possibility of being bitten.

Let’s look at some specific examples.

Can Mosquitoes … Read Full Post »

Which Zoysia Grass Type Is Right For My Lawn?

Zoysia grass types

Most homeowners quickly realize that keeping a healthy, green carpet of grass in their yards is much more difficult than they originally anticipated. While most species commonly found in residential areas share similar characteristics, there are some distinctive qualities that make some types do better or worse under some conditions, particularly in parts of the country that are hot with little rainfall.

The most common warm-season species are bermudagrass, buffalo grass, centipede grass, seashore paspalum, St. Augustine and Zoysia grass. Zoysia is a popular choice for homeowners because it can tolerate shade, drought, cold and traffic. Better yet, these species have a low fertilizer requirement. With dozens of varieties to choose from, Zoysia grass types can provide slightly different advantages, depending on what you need, how much time you want to spend on your lawn and the conditions in your lawn. The quality and availability of each cultivar can vary by … Read Full Post »

My Pool Turned Green Overnight: What Should I Do?

pool turned green overnight

It can be a nasty shock when you discover that the normally clear, sky-blue water in your pool turned green overnight. Why is my pool green? Typically, algae is the source of green pool water, and it’s certainly possible that it took over quickly, even overnight. This is especially likely if it is very warm outside, since algae blooms more rapidly in warmer temperatures. It is even more common, however, for there to have been an ongoing, undetected chemical imbalance in your pool water that enabled algae to grow.

As a rule of thumb, the deeper the shade of green, the more algae has bloomed. If your pool has just a mild green tint to it, that’s a good thing—it means you’ve likely noticed the problem before it has gone too far, which should make it easier to treat. The first step toward getting your pool back to normal? Determining the … Read Full Post »

When To Open A Pool In Texas: A Complete Guide

When To Open Pool

If you look forward to swimming in your own backyard oasis, as the winter months come to a close, your thoughts probably turn to when to open your pool. While that’s not always the case for every pool owner, winter can be painful for those of us who like to spend time outdoors, especially in those parts of the country where we are used to sunshine and short sleeves nearly year-round. Here in Texas, most of us open our pools for the season when the temperature is consistently above 70 degrees. Since we can have some strange cold fronts some years, that can be in mid-March some years and not until early April in others.

Before we know it, we will be lounging poolside, dipping our toes in refreshing, crystal-clear water and enjoying warmer weather. Until that time comes, you may be wondering how to clean a swimming pool after winter, which … Read Full Post »

Get Rid Of Swarming Termites To Protect Your Home

Get Rid Of Swarming Termites

During the spring, homeowners may begin to notice animals and plants that may have been inactive or dormant during the coldest months of the year.

While blooming plants and baby animals make most of us feel warm and fuzzy inside, some creatures that become more visible when the temperatures climb are less likely to inspire the same kind of positive feelings. One example? Termites.

If you see a flying bug with wings, you might be seeing an ant, but you could be seeing a termite. If you spotted the latter, you want to nip the problem in the bud as fast as possible. You probably already know why, but just to give you a reminder, we’re going to hit the highlights real quick.

Why should you jump into action if you see termites?

We all know that fire and natural disasters can do a lot of expensive damage. Did you realize that termites cause more … Read Full Post »

At What Temperature Does Grass Stop Growing?

what temperature does grass stop growing

During the winter months, when temperatures across the United States drop for several months at a stretch, most varieties of grass that people use in their yards go dormant—meaning, their active growth cycles slow down. The grass is still alive, but it is in a state of suspended animation. During this time, your yard may lose quite a bit of its bright, deeply green hue. Your plants might even look diseased or dead, and will certainly appear dry. While your lawn might look lifeless, lawn experts will tell you that dormant grass is doing exactly what it’s supposed to do when nutrients aren’t as readily available as they are during the warmer, sunnier months.

Since grass goes dormant in the winter, many people do not need to mow their yards more than a few times throughout the entire winter season and often debate on when to start mowing the lawn again. … Read Full Post »

Types Of Roaches In Texas: What Homeowners Should Know

Types of Roaches in Texas

It’s every homeowner’s worst nightmare: you are going through a box in a garage and you unintentionally disturb a  cockroach. Or worse still, multiple roaches.

As it (or they) skitter toward the darkest possible corners, you run inside, disgusted and call your spouse, explaining what happened. After you calm down a bit, your partner asks: “What kind of roaches were they?”

A majority of homeowners have no idea what kind of cockroaches they’re dealing with. Most of us aren’t exactly roach experts, after all, and barely anyone likes to get up close and personal with the critters.

Why does it matter, anyways?

Most Texans are surprised to hear that there are about 30 different cockroach species in our state alone, and that the type of roach infesting your home can inform how you can try to get rid of them—and what you might do to prevent future infestations.

Unfortunately, getting rid of roaches may be … Read Full Post »

Can You See Bed Bugs With The Human Eye?

Can you see bed bugs with the human eye

It’s an all-too-common scenario: You wake up one morning, or perhaps even several mornings in a row, with suspicious, itchy bites on your skin—and you wonder whether you might be dealing with a bed bug infestation. How can you tell if you’ve had a run-in with a bed bug or some other type of biting insect, such as mosquitoes, fleas, chiggers or ticks? Can you see bed bugs with the human eye? What are some telltale signs of a bed bug bite or a full-on infestation? Read on to learn the answers to these common questions and more.

How To Find Bed Bugs During The Day

For anyone wondering whether they can see bed bugs with the human eye, the short answer is yes—adult bed bugs are about the same size, shape and color as an apple seed, so they are certainly visible with the naked human eye. The longer answer, however, … Read Full Post »

Do Rats Eat Dog Poop? Your Questions Answered

do rats eat dog poop

Many homeowners who have dogs may wonder, Do rats eat dog poop? Before you begin to snicker, consider that it’s a fair (and common) question, especially if you’re dealing with a rat problem—or even a full-fledged rat infestation. Trying to figure out what food sources you’re inadvertently providing your unwelcome visitors is a smart strategy since prevention is almost always easier than finding a cure. To put it another way, it’s easier, not to mention safer and more humane, to make your home and property unattractive to rats than to try to deal with a rat infestation by trapping or coming into close contact with the rodents themselves.

To keep rats away from your home and yard, or to get rid of them once they’ve moved in, it’s essential to have an effective plan in place. Rats aren’t just “gross,” scary or pesky; they can actually pose a real danger to … Read Full Post »