Outdoor Bugs!

I don’t go camping with my husband and the kids because I detest bugs, especially the nasty flying things during the summer. Of course, I also hate mosquitos and spiders but there are worse kinds. When I was a child, my father wanted to teach me how to pin butterflies to a board after catching them in a jar. It was the epitome of cruelty I somehow thought in my childish way. I never took to any hobby related to insect collecting. I never wanted to see them even in a museum. Imagine my chagrin when I found bugs eating away at my lovely patio wooden trellis. After a quick check of a web site called pestHow, I called the exterminator who came over in a flash, only to report that I probably had termites and needed a specialist to treat them. It might not be too late, he said, as he surveyed the condition of the lathwork. I was lucky this time. He said that he had witnessed considerable damage from this wood-eating monsters over the years. He told me to have the specialist look inside the house to be sure.

I could barely look at the swarming insects but I knew they were there enjoying a wonderful snack. I pictured the trellis falling down and thought in horror of the expense I would incur rebuilding it. Since I was in an imaginative mode, I also had an image of a huge green or yellow tent over the entire house and patio. You have to remove you pets and move the entire family to another location for four days. Did I mention the cost? I believe I did and it is over a thousand dollars, not to mention the motel fee.

The termite service was a little more reassuring than I expected and promised me that they could salvage the remaining wood. Plus, they have a treatment with orange oil that is safe to apply while the family remains at home. No tent and no embarrassment with the neighbors. They applied a significant quantity of the miracle citrus fluid to all parts of the affected trellis and said to avoid the patio for a few days while the nasty critters die. I would be able to rent or borrow an outdoor vacuum to scoop up the carcasses after which I could power hose the tile flooring down. The treatment would last for years, maybe five or more, while it was guaranteed for three. If I spotted one single stray termite, I could call for a reapplication.

The results were satisfactory, and in fact they were amazing. The termites were gone and I have yet to see another. I was so pleased to have dealt with the issue so expediently. The family could continue to use the outdoor kitchen and refrigerator on the patio and enjoy swimming in the pool. While I watched for floating bodies, none ever appeared. Plus, there was no infestation in the fence around the yard or anywhere in the house. Rah!