June is here, which in my book means that summer has finally arrived. If you don't believe me, keep an eye on the thermometer this weekend. With the arrival of summer in Minnesota, we all know that those pesky mosquitoes can't be far behind.

Mosquito: (See Minnesota Bird)

We all react to their itchy bites differently. After a weekend of camping or at the cabin Amie is a human pin cushion, while most of the time I got mostly unscathed. We're never sure if she's bitten more or just reacts more severely that I do.

In addition to being able to ruin time in the backyard, they can transmit viruses like West Nile and Zika.

So what can we do about these backyard invaders? Here are some simple suggestions from Joe Malinowski with Mosquito Authority.

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Consider a Professional Service

No surprise that Joe suggests this as a remedy, but I can speak from personal experience that it works well. I used a service last summer and I can really say I didn't see more than a skeeter or two in my yard all summer. After an initial spray treatment, they came back for a monthly booster spray. It's worth thinking about. Mosquito Squad, Mid-Sota Mosquito & Tick, and Valley Green are just a few of your St. Cloud area options.

Get Rid of Standing Water

We've all heard this one before, but a reminder never hurts. Standing water water is a perfect breeding ground for mosquitoes. Look out for clogged drain gutters, corrugated drain pipes, bird baths, pet bowls, planters, trash and recycling bins, kids’s toys, and kiddie pools.

Use Safe Repellents

Repellents registered by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) have been reviewed and approved to pose minimal risk when used properly.

What You Wear Matters

Studies have shown that some mosquitoes are more attracted to dark clothing. Avoid wearing lightweight, thin materials, which mosquitoes can bite right through. Instead, opt for tightly woven materials, like cotton, denim, nylon, or windbreaker-type materials, which are more difficult for the bugs to penetrate. Clothing that provides UV protection is typically tightly woven and often protects against insect bites, too. Bonus!

Keep Your Landscape Clean

Trimmed trees and shrubs improve a property's air circulation. The increased air flow will physically push mosquitoes out of that area and remove the environment they thrive in. There are also some gardening choices that can deter mosquitoes: basil, lavender, and catnip are all plants that mosquitoes don’t like.

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