As a business owner or property manager, you know that image matters. When potential customers pull up to the building you’re in charge of, you want them to be impressed. One of the easiest ways to impress arriving customers is proactive landscape management. Your businesses’ first impression begins before customers even enter your building! A well-groomed and attractive landscape outside suggests a well-run and attractive business inside.

That’s not all proper landscaping can do, either. Proper landscape development can also help you prevent potential pest infestations. Depending on the plants and other details you choose, you can either draw in or push pests away. Making the right choices protects your building while boosting your business.

Pay attention to your water features.

Everything needs to stay hydrated to survive–even pests. All kinds of pests are drawn to sources of moisture. Many pests, such as mosquitoes, also use water sources as places to mate and lay eggs. Obviously, this would be a problem for your business. A water feature with mosquitoes buzzing around it isn’t going to make anybody except other mosquitoes feel welcome.

There are a few things you can do to prevent mosquitoes from infesting your water features. First, equip all water features with equipment that keeps the water inside them from turning stagnant. Mosquitoes can only permanently infest and lay eggs in still, standing water. If you’re installing a larger water feature, make sure the water in it is deeper than two feet. Mosquito larvae can’t thrive in deep water very well.

Consider the plants and mulch you choose carefully.

Just like some plants are especially appealing to pests, some plants actually deter pests! Marigolds drive off mosquitoes and repel bugs with their distinct scent. Lavender draws in bees, a welcome pollinator, but many other pests find the scent unpleasant. Citronella grass contains the same oils used in pest prevention candles. Herbs like rosemary, basil, and mint all have scents most insects find repulsive.

You should also consider (or re-consider) using mulch in your landscaping. Mulch is a common and very helpful feature of commercial landscaping. After all, it looks good, prevents weed growth, and helps plants absorb water more efficiently. Unfortunately, however, mulch’s beneficial features also make it damp, warm, and soft–all things pests love. If you do use mulch, you’ll have to be especially careful to avoid pest infestations. Keep any mulch you use at least eighteen inches from the outer perimeter of your building. Choose a mulch variety that doesn’t hold too much moisture, like cedar mulch. Don’t dig mulch bed deeper than two inches.

Don’t give pests a way in.

One of the easiest ways for pests to enter a building is by finding a perimeter breach. Roaches, rats, and mice all love scurrying in through the smallest holes. If you have vegetation that climbs or reaches high against your building, then you have a problem. These creatures use vines or foliage to climb and enter through windows you may have considered safe.

Avoid this risk by keeping any foliage at least a few feet from your outer wall. Keep bushes and tree limbs regularly trimmed. If you want to take an extra step, install an 18 to 24-inch strip of gravel around your building. That gravel barrier will help make mulch a bit more inaccessible (or at least undesirable) to pests.

Sometimes, despite our best efforts, the worst still happens and pests get inside. When that occurs, give the team at Assured Environments a call. We’ll help you get your business and its landscaping back on track in no time.