Here we are mid-September and other than SEC Football and preparing for the upcoming cooler weather and holidays, September brings the dreaded “Plecia Nearctica,” aka lovebugs!
Oh how we love to hate these seasonal black flies with dark red thoraxes when their prevalence thickens this time of year. Lucky for us, they will come and go quickly with the only memory being their smashed bodies on the front car grills and window-shields.
During the remainder of their short life span here, we have a few tried and true ways of keeping them from compiling at your front or back doors and how to effectively wash them from your cars.
These are some natural and effective ways to keep them from getting into your house:
Keep your lawn mowed: Love bugs are born of the earth, in the thatch of ti actually. Thatch is the the layer of dead and living plant material that forms between the soil surface and green vegetation. Mowing the top 1/3rd of grass helps control the breeding grounds for love bugs.
Light mosquito candles: As it does to mosquitos, the scent drives love bugs away too!
Make your own insect spray: Every where we looked this homemade, easy recipe showed up with positive results. Mix warm water with a citrus-scented detergent (Ajax dish liquid with 100% real citrus orange extract is a common choice) and a splash of minty mouthwash; shake up; add to a spray bottle; and cover your doors and window ledges. The bugs won’t land so they don’t end up congregating and entering any openings.
Keep fan on: This is suggested to keep them off of porches.
Ideas of how to keep them off of your car and best practices to wash them off after a long journey:
Use cooking spray on your car: Lightly spray a thin layer on the front hood and back of side mirrors. This helps remove them much easier, but you should still wash them off immediately because their acidic guts are known to destroy your paint if left on too long.
Wax you car: Some types of car wax are designed to reduce the effects of bugs on your car. Spreading a healthy layer of wax on your car just before love bug season helps reduce their damage.
If you failed to follow the advice above, just remember to always wash your car immediately after a long drive. The best cleaning solution is Dawn dish soap and water. It is also a great car cleaner on normal days too!
Happy September and remember these pesky love bugs will be gone long before Halloween so we should only have them around for a few more weeks.
To get the best results with the homemade insect spray, use this formula:
3 cups water
1/2-cup dishwashing liquid
Mix it well! This would make 1 quart of the mixture. You can adjust for a larger or smaller batch. Hope this helps!
Click Here to see the original solution recipe and article.