Mosquito Squad Takes on My Backyard – So Far, Mosquitoes Are Evacuating!

Posted May 24th, 2012 by Elaine in Green, Health, Living, Uncategorized

Playing tag in the mosquito-free backyardI live in Arlington, Virginia, and the mosquitoes around my home have been known to drive me to weed my garden in the heat of summer with long sleeves, long pants, and a head covering. I look ridiculous and am extremely uncomfortable. This year, I’m trying something different to keep the bugs away. The Mosquito Squad will be coming to my yard and trying to work their magic of repelling the bugs. The jury is still out on whether they’ll be successful, but a week and a half after their first treatment – a period filled with lots of spring showers – my kids are running around in the backyard without mosquito repellant being sprayed on them. Most importantly, they’re coming back inside at the end of the evening without complaining about endless bug bites. Last night, I sat in my yard with shorts on and plucked lettuce from my garden and came in with zero bites. I like this!

The Mosquito Squad has two types of spray – the “natural spray option” and the “standard spray.” Although the Mosquito Squad has been perfectly clear that they do not expect the natural spray option to be as effective as the standard spray (65% effective versus 90% effective), I’m using that for a few reasons. Mainly, I’m trying to walk with a light footprint, so choosing the least powerful treatment to start with seems appropriate. The natural spray option works to repel mosquitoes and must be applied every two weeks. The standard spray works by killing the mosquitoes, and leaving behind a residue that will kill new mosquitoes that come in the yard. It gets reapplied every three weeks.

What I can say this far is that my yard is usable! And it’s being used all day and into the evening – whenever my kids are around to kick balls, play in the sandbox, and swing on the swings.

For reference, this will be the third summer in our current home, and the last two summers have been filled with mosquito abatement measures. The first year, we removed many over-grown plants and vines that had the effect of making the air in our backyard very still. Breezes couldn’t get through easily, so mosquitoes could thrive. We consulted several landscapers before taking this project on, and they all said we needed to improve air flow. Things did improve, but we were still fighting the critters!

Last summer, we removed loads of wooden boardwalks from around our home in order to get rid of mosquito breeding ground. Then, we had Sun Design install a screened-in-porch so that if we couldn’t reclaim our yard, at least we could enjoy dinner mostly outside. This, for the record, is a pretty expensive way to avoid mosquitoes, but also very effective – at least behind the screen. But still, the yard could be miserable.

This summer, I’m crossing my fingers that we have finally sealed the deal on getting rid of enough mosquitoes to make our yard the lovely place we always dreamed of. Cross your fingers – and I’ll write more in a few weeks to see if the good luck continues, or if the last two mosquito-free weeks were a fluke.

Find out more about the Mosquito Squad on Facebook or watch a short video on YouTube! If you’re interested in setting up an initial appointment, tell them The DC Moms referred you!

Elaine blogs about the fun her children have outside at Connor and Helen Grow Up! With less time spent smacking mosquitoes, she’s hoping to work on her photography – and enjoy more mojitos! The Mosquito Squad is treating Elaine’s yard for free in May and June this summer. No additional compensation is being paid, and all opinions are my own. I was extremely skeptical about this method of getting rid of mosquitoes, but now I’m a believer! Come on over for a BBQ and see for yourself!

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12 Responses to “Mosquito Squad Takes on My Backyard – So Far, Mosquitoes Are Evacuating!”

  1. Ariel

    We’re embarking on our second summer in our house in Silver Spring and our first step has been thinking about screening in our porch :-) I had thought about looking in to mosquito treatments but had thought that it wouldn’t make much of a difference if our neighbors didn’t do it as well. Did they mention anything about that when they came to treat your yard?

    • Elaine

      My kids run between my neighbor’s yard (which is untreated) and mine, and there is a noticeable difference in the two yards. I’ve been surprised at how well this stuff seems to work.

      You will love your screened-in porch. We eat on ours almost every evening. But also clear any brush you can to get as much air moving in your yard as possible. This made a huge difference for us.

  2. Crystal

    I have a house in Arlington and am contemplating calling the Mosquito Squad too. I am only a renter but it seems pointless to rent a house with a back porch and yard if I can’t use either. I arrived in August last year and didn’t notice them as much (plus my landlords had used a similar company), but this year I’m frustrated and like you, reduced to using my yard only during the midday heat. I can’t even water my patio plants without being attacked.

    How is your situation one month on? I also have a dog and am worried about any secondary impacts on him but I imagine the “natural” spray is designed for just that situation.

    I live in South Arlington and my house and the neighbors’ houses have plenty of natural mosquito habitat (though purportedly no standing water). I’m hoping that spraying only my yard will at least help! I’d love to get an update on your current situation.

  3. Elaine

    How timely! My yard was just sprayed today. It’s a little stinky (which it will be for a few days), but I was out messing around in my garden and didn’t get any bites. They come every two weeks, and I say that timing is about right. Usually, the last day or two before the come, we start noticing mosquitoes, though not nearly as many as we noticed in prior years. I wonder if you could call Mosquito Squad and get the address of a yard you could walk around in? Or maybe there’s some sort of guarantee where you try them once or twice and decide? I’ve definitely been happy.

  4. Crystal

    Thanks for the update! I’m definitely going to give them a call and get a quote but first, I’m going to have the eaves troughs/ gutters cleaned out as I think they’re making an already bad situation worse. I hope the mosquito repellant doesn’t have any unnecessary casualties though. One thing I do love are all the wonderful fireflies hovering about. Of course… with so many mosquitoes I’ve only been able to enjoy them from inside. It will be nice to actually sit on my deck in the evening and watch them go by!

  5. Serena @ Thrift Diving

    Hi, Elaine! Just found your review, as the Spring 2013 has just started and our house here in Silver Spring gets BLASTED with mosquitoes (but we get the Tiger mosquitoes that bite during the DAY; they’re ferocious!). I refuse to go through another season with these buggers and want to call in Mosquito Squad. But I wanted to ask you, what we your overall satisfaction last season? Would you do it all over again? Are you using them this season, too? Thanks for the help!!

    Serena
    Thrift Diving

    • Elaine

      Serena, I was satisfied with the product. I was out on my back lawn last Saturday and got some ferocious bug bites – ALREADY! While I was planning on taking a wait and see approach to see how bad they got, I’m now in the process of thinking that it’s not worth the wait.

  6. Elaine

    Serena, I was satisfied with the product. I was out on my back lawn last Saturday and got some ferocious bug bites – ALREADY! While I was planning on taking a wait and see approach to see how bad they got, I’m now in the process of thinking that it’s not worth the wait.

  7. Serena @ Thrift Diving

    YIKES! I can’t believe they’re out already! Sorry you got bit so badly! I just called M.Squad yesterday and it’s $699 for 8-10 treatments. Even though I can’t afford it, I also can’t deal with the thought of going through another season of running from the van into the house to afford getting bitten. LOL. UGH!

  8. Diplomat Bob

    There are similar companies that cost less. Protech has a 5 month deal on Angies List now for $275. Presuming they are relatively competent–and they have good reviews–I am thinking it will be worth it, and save plenty of cash. Bought a $50 one time deal on Angie’s List too. Did that last year from Mosquito Squad after we bought a house and it was amazing–just wiped all the skeeters out.

  9. Anne C

    Does anyone know what’s in the natural version? I won’t use synthetic insect control, but I want to do my own research on how safe it is.