One of the easiest ways to add a touch of tranquillity to your garden is by adding a water feature. With an extensive range of styles, shapes and sizes, it’s quite easy to customise the best type of water feature to suit your garden ambience.
Despite the beauty and serenity of a water feature, one of the hindrances that homeowners face is the bugs and pests that may take up residence in the area. The pest control services Melbourne residents use, have a few recommendations to help you keep your water feature pest-free.
Why Do Mosquitoes Love Water Features?
Depending on the type of water feature you’re creating, you may in fact be creating the perfect breeding ground for mosquitoes. This is because mosquitoes thrive in stagnant water as it provides a suitable place to lay eggs.
Additionally, hatched larvae feed on any algae in the water and find protection from the debris in the water. They remain in this environment until they’re ready to fly out and move into your home!
Pest-Free Water Features—Here’s How
Many people turn away from the allure of a beautiful water feature in their garden or outdoor entertainment area because of the accompanying pests. Fortunately, there are some steps you can implement to minimise the chances of mosquitoes and other annoying insects from becoming a nuisance. Let’s see what our experts have to say about it.
1. Incorporate Natural Predators Near Your Water Features
The number one reason for adding a water feature to your outdoor space is usually to get closer to nature. If that’s the case, then you may not want to use pesticides to remove unwanted pests.
One of the most natural methods of keeping pests at bay is to promote natural predators to consume insects such as mosquitoes. Here are a few tips to consider:
- Introduce fish such as koi and minnows to your feature to eliminate mosquito eggs laid in the water.
- Encourage insects such as spiders and dragonflies to use the space by planting foliage they eat and live under.
- Set up a nearby bird bath to encourage birds that will feed on unwanted insects.
2. Create a Deep Water Feature
Since mosquito larvae thrive in shallow water to avoid their predators, it’s a good idea to design your feature with adequate depth. Our home pest control experts recommend opting for about 24 inches to keep mosquitoes and other bugs out.
3. Remove Unnecessary Organic Material
While you may think leaving organic material to grow all over your water feature adds to the ambience, it’s worth noting that this is often the perfect hiding spot for mosquitoes.
Excess vegetation such as moss and other foliage left to grow at the edge of your pond or feature also serves as nutritious food sources for the young larvae. Consider a design that doesn’t incorporate plants that hang in the water.
Rather plant shrubs that deter mosquitoes from the space. Lavender bushes are a popular choice. You’ll have the added benefit of beautiful flowers and a lovely fragrance.
4. Introduce Running Water
As we’ve already mentioned, mosquitoes love stagnant water. That means your pond or feature should rather have running water. You can do this by installing fountains, spitters and waterfalls. Simple water pumps will make it easy for water to circulate, making it less likely for mosquitoes to be interested in your water feature.
The good news here is that there is a wide range of designs and styles that will make it super easy to incorporate a fountain or spitter into your feature without ruining the natural aesthetic.
5. Encourage Tadpoles and Frogs
It’s no secret that frogs and tadpoles enjoy feeding on mosquito larvae. That said, it’s an excellent idea to incorporate these little critters into the area. Here are a few simple ways to do that:
- Plant marginal plants around the perimeter of the water feature as this will provide them with shelter against their own predators. Common plant options include swamp milkweed, joe-pye weed, black-eyed Susans and ferns.
- Additional plants such as water lilies within the pond or feature itself encourage frogs and tadpoles to swim in the water, which also makes it easy for them to reach mosquito larvae.
If you’re bringing frogs to the pond, be sure to opt for poison-free species, especially if you have pets.
Having a water feature in your garden or near your outdoor entertainment area is a magnificent way to create a tranquil environment. If set up correctly, your feature can also benefit your property’s ecosystem and make a wonderful habitat for beneficial plants and insects.
Use our expert guidelines to minimise nuisance pests such as mosquitoes from overwhelming the space and making it unpleasant for anyone who wants to enjoy the space. Creating your water feature or pond with these tips in mind will ensure that you set it up correctly from the onset, which goes a long way to creating a serene space!