Pest Control: Popular Methods

     

      There are many methods that can be used to eliminate pests from your home. Some methods are organic or natural. Other methods involve using chemicals or pesticides. Use caution whenever you use chemicals to remove pests. Avoid breathing harmful fumes and wear protective clothing, gloves, and eyewear. Keep children and pets away from harmful chemicals.

  • Biological pest control: This method of pest control uses other organisms to control pests like insects, mites, weeds, and plant diseases. It relies upon natural control methods such as predation, parasitism, and herbivory to eradicate pests. This control method involves human interaction and management.

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  • Cultural control: This pest control method is associated with large-scale agricultural farming. The smaller scale uses include home gardening, landscape, and tree and shrub care. It is used to prevent weeds from spreading between different land areas and crops. Crop rotation controls pests by depriving them of host plants. This cultural control tactic is used to destroy corn rootworm. Tillage, using mechanical equipment, is an old method used to control weeds. It controls wireworms and click beetle larvae. Such pests are very destructive to grassland. Tillage exposes the bugs to predators such as birds that eat them.

  • Trap cropping: This method of pest control uses plants to lure pests away from nearby crops. It avoids using chemicals. Instead, this method uses other crops to trap insects and keep them away from the main crop. The success rate, approximately 10 to 20%, is low for this method used by large industrial and commercial growers. Generally, the trap crop is used during the lifecycle of the invading pest. Once the pest dies, the trap crop is destroyed before the pest can invade and destroy the main crop.

  • Pesticides: Large commercial growers as well smaller-scale farmers and gardeners use pesticides. Often, large commercial growers use aircraft for crop dusting and chemical sprays to eliminate pests. There are detrimental effects on other non-target insects.

  • Physical pest control: Trapping or baiting to attract and kill pests or rodents is a physical control method.Hanging sticky flypapers will trap flying insects. Ultraviolet light bug zappers kill flying insects. Some bug zappers include a sticky residue to aid with killing the flying insects. Baited with poison, mouse and rat receptacles kill rodents. Sticky glue boards will trap mice. Baited and spring-loaded mouse and rat traps kill rodents.

  • Poisoned bait: Another form of physical pest control uses poisoned bait stations. This method is commonly used to kill rats, ants, mice, snails, slugs, and cockroaches.

  • Fumigation: Fumigating a building involves using an airtight tent to cover the building. Then inside the building, fogging chemicals are used to kill pests. This process takes 24 to 72 hour.
  • Electronic pest control: This method of pest control uses electrically charged devices to repel and kill pests which are usually insects and rodents. Such devices include using ultrasonic or radio waves. Electric bug zappers are commonly sold and used to attract, trap, and kill flying insects.

Brick Work: If You Build It, They Will Come

Houses constructed with brick veneer have an appealing low-maintenance look. The resale value of a brick home can bring a selling price six percent higher than non-brick homes. Brick gives the appearance of a sturdy structure. Available in many colors, red is a favorite traditional color. Other colors consist of brown, tan, cream, buff, orange, pink, and burgundy. Though brick may be painted, most people favor the natural brick color as originally created and constructed. Mortar comes in colors of white, cream, brown, black, and gray which is the most common and least expensive. Brick veneer is the exterior decorative layer on a stick built, or wood construction, house. Metal strips are used to tie the brick and mortar. The mortar is a mixture of cement, sand, water and usually lime. The mortar mixture adheres to the brick, blocks, or stone and binds them together. The mortar should be mixed using a temperature range between 40 and 120 degrees. Between the building’s wall and the brick veneer is an air gap, usually one to two inches but can be up to 4 inches. This air gap is very important because it helps to alleviate moisture content. Brick or masonry is durable and a natural insulator and resistant to mold and moisture. Masonry has been used to construct buildings for more than 5,000 years. It stands the test of time. Brick masons are highly trained and skilled. They must understand building codes and blueprints. Depending upon seasonal temperatures and regional climate, brick masons work nearly year-round.

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Masonry typically involves building the structure of brick and block or stone using mortar to hold the units together. Other materials such as marble, granite, limestone, concrete block, glass block, or adobe may be used. Buildings constructed using masonry are usually reinforced with rebar (steel reinforcement rods or bars) making it a very sturdy structure. People residing in geographic areas prone to hurricanes and tornadoes prefer the protection provided by this type of building construction. Quality of materials and workmanship is important in masonry projects because it affects the durability of the finished product. Skilled trade workers called masons, or bricklayers, work on many types of construction projects.

The projects may consist of new buildings or repair work on existing structures. In addition, common projects may include working on brick walls, chimneys, fireplaces, or patios. Such projects are not limited to brickwork but may include concrete block, stone, marble, or other materials. Economical, masonry work may include floors and walls. Concrete masonry consists of the concrete block or breeze block. The blocks are referred to as concrete masonry units (CMU). Concrete material is made up of water, cement, aggregates which include sand and stone. Cement is an ingredient of concrete. Masonry construction is resistant to fire, wind, and hail and it keeps buildings cool in the summer and warm in the winter. A benefit is a reduction of high electric bills. For the aforementioned reasons, many government buildings, for example, schools, are constructed of masonry units.

Concrete Driveways and Patios: A Guide

Concrete Driveways

No doubt about it, a smooth driveway surface is on every homeowner’s wish list. Durability, low-maintenance, strength, and longevity are the benefits of choosing concrete over asphalt or gravel. For attractiveness and long-term maintenance, concrete can be colored, stamped, and sealed. Concrete consists of stone aggregate, water, and lime-based (Portland cement) composition. Commonly used for driveway and sidewalk surfaces, finer grades of stone aggregate material vary with relation to the desired texture of the concrete slab. For smooth concrete surfaces, fine sand particles to small gravel aggregate are used. Removal of an old reinforced concrete driveway takes more than eight hours with an estimated cost of up to $3,500. For a four inch thick 20 ft. wide by 40 ft. long two-car driveway, the cost is estimated as more than $5 per square foot without added expense for increased depth, sloping, or curves. Thicker concrete is suggested for driveways containing more than two cars or heavy-duty vehicles. Concrete is best when poured at temperatures above 50°F. Pouring concrete during freezing temperatures compromises quality and strength. Heat, cold, moisture, mold, salt deposits, and air circulation affect the lifespan of concrete slabs. Every four to five years, sealing properly cured concrete ensures protection against damage, corrosion, and staining. Wait 72 hours before using a sealed concrete surface.

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Concrete Patios

Accounting for homeowner preference, concrete patios may consist of poured concrete, stamped concrete or concrete patio pavers.  Numerous pros and cons mention the benefits and disadvantages of each type of surface. Poured concrete has the advantage of a long product lifespan as well as quality over less expensive options. Stamped and colored concrete patios have the added design factor over plain poured concrete or patio pavers. Poured concrete offers a smooth walking surface adding safety and property value. Poured concrete costs less than pavers. A winning combination, poured concrete has the advantage of strength, durability, and cost-effectiveness. Cons involved:  Improperly installed pavers may shift and cause an uneven patio and walking surface.  As well, improperly poured and cured concrete has the disadvantage of cracking, peeling, and degrading. Cost and quality are big concerns when considering ROI and installation schedules. Installing a new patio takes time which affects the overall quality of the finished project. Depending upon regional prices as well as seasonal market fluctuations, due to the production process, concrete pavers can be as expensive, if not more, than a poured concrete patio surface. Pavers cost approximately $5 to $15 per square foot. Red brick paver cost varies from 50 cents to $5.00 per brick. Estimated, poured concrete costs $3 to $5 per square foot. An average sized poured concrete patio costs $3,000 with 50% ROI and a $1,500 increased property valuation. When planning, consider cost, quality, time and schedule

Fencing: All You Need to Know and Then Some

Choosing fence material, or fence panels, is a choice based upon usage and fence type. For example, if the usage is privacy and security, i.e., to protect children, pets, or for a pool enclosure, then, a solid fence panel, of wood or vinyl composition, is the best choice. If the need is for barrier with visibility, then, chain-link fence fabric is a good option. Modern fence panels are constructed of wood, metal, or vinyl. Common metal fences are chain-link, or wrought iron type, with chain-link as the popular choice. Avoid purchasing the wrong type of fence material. Prior to purchase, check municipal and homeowner association codes and regulations. Save time and money, a satisfied customer plans ahead.

Chain-link fence material is made of galvanized metal with some fences constructed of vinyl covered chain-link fabric.  Steel posts secure the chain-link fabric. Metal wires run in a vertical zigzag pattern and are hooked together giving the appearance of a diamond shape. Chain-link fence fabric is available in 10 to 50 foot rolls. Weather-resistant vinyl covered chain-link fencing comes in green or black colors with bare silver metal as the most common choice. Decorative plastic slats are inserted for aesthetic appeal and privacy. Considered as sturdy, inexpensive, low-maintenance fencing, it comes in three to 12 feet height with various mesh sizes and gauges. Special tools include hog-ring pliers, tie wires, stretcher and tension bars, and tension bands. Commercial security fences are topped with barbed wire.

Wood fence panels are very popular and long lasting. Pressure-treated wood panels and posts stand the test of time and last many years longer than untreated wood panels. Homeowners living in extreme weather areas should consider using pressure-treated wood fence material and posts. Pine, Douglas fir, redwood, and spruce wood may be treated with a pressure-treated chemical and process to avoid termites and fungal decay. Wood panels are decorative and commonly called stockade fence panels. Some panels have lattice on top to provide beauty as well as function. Preassembled fence panels are easier to install than stick-built common component fences. Stick-built fences are constructed of individual boards, rails, and posts but they follow the lay of the land, called racking, easier than preformed fence panels. Preassembled fence panels, also use posts and stair-step installation conforming to landscape contour. Easier and faster to construct than stick-built fences, the panels come in sections that are four to six feet tall and six to eight feet long.

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Over the past 30 years, vinyl panel fences have become a popular choice. Vinyl, PVC or polyvinyl chloride, fences have low-maintenance. More homeowners are choosing vinyl fence panels because they are attractive, easy to clean, and do not decay or fade. Vinyl fence panels are constructed as four to six feet tall and five to seven feet wide sections. Vinyl rails vary from eight to sixteen feet long. Vinyl panels use racking and stair-step installation to conform to landscape contour.

Best Lyrics of Year 2018

Best Lyrics of Year 2018

The year of 2018 has seen some great music revolutions with the rise of new music artists. Gone are the days when the music fans were adamant advocates of only one genre of music created by their one favorite artist. Today, the fans are more inclined to delve into a mix and match of various sounds amalgamated with bold lyrics. Some of the latest songs make you want to die for you love while the other will make you want to kill your lover. This is the kind of versatility which we have seen in the past decade and frankly, it does not seem to take a break any time soon. Since artists as DJ Khaled, Cardi B and bands such as SYML and Cigarettes after sex are on rise, the interest of music fans is shooting upstream to discover newer music before anyone else. Long story short, 2018 has brought some irresistible music creations and artists with it which is evident from the following best lyrics of the year 2018:

God’s plan, Drake:

“She say, “Do you love me?”

I tell her, “Only partly”,

I only love my bed and my momma, I’m sorry”

Ring any bells? I bet it does! Dedicated to all the new generation “independent music fans” which proclaim to be self-lovers, Drake has created yet another thrilling piece which is echoing with thrilling beats. This song is here to rule the music records for couple of years to come.

Tongue, MNEK:

“So I’m putting both hands over my mouth
I can only hope nothing’s gonna come out
But there it is on the tip of my tongue
(I think I love you)
I think you’re the one”

MNEK has truly stunned the music world with its otherworldly music creations. The new “Tongue” song is a ballistic thrill for all the music-lover who love to groove on fresh tunes topped with sizzling lyrics.

Sesame Syrup, Cigarettes after Sex:

“I have had a long list of lovers but,

None of them matter to me except you,

You have had a long list of lovers but,

None of them matter to you except me”

Drenched in sensuality, Cigarettes after Sex has touched new heights of eroticism, heart-break, longing and love in this piece. The band’s fans are going crazy over the deeper than ever voice of the artist which perfectly complements the soothing tunes for an arousing experience.

Into it, Camila Cabello:

“I’m not a psychic but I see myself all over you”

After gaining immense fame from “Havanna”- one of the most viewed songs of the past year, music artist Camilo Cabello is setting new records of popularity with her all new “Into it” song. It is a must-listen song for all of Camila’s fans.

Lost in Japan, Shawn Mendes:

“All it’d take is one flight,

We’d be in the same time zone”

Dedicated to the long-distance lovers, Shawn Mendes has introduced yet another lovely music piece sang in his unique voice and echoing with soothing tunes. This song is promised to make you miss the lover which you never even had!