Insect & Pest Solutions

Roaches in Your Kitchen? Check the Coffee Maker. — Life in the Kitchen

A few weeks ago, I started noticing small roaches occasionally scuttling around my kitchen. This being an old apartment building in New York City, I wasn't too shocked. I had dealt with mice and ants in my last apartment and once stepped on a dead rat in the middle of the street (a story for another time), so it only seemed natural that cockroaches would one day appear on my personal docket of NYC vermin to confront.

It wasn't like I had a full-on infestation — or so I thought. I'd see maybe one German cockroach, which are smaller than some other, gnarlier cockroach types I've seen, crawling on my backsplash or in one of my kitchen cabinets once a week, but I knew I had to nip this problem in the bud. So one night, I decided to do a full apartment clean to dissuade the roaches from coming back. I set about cleaning my sink and counters with disinfectant and spraying Hot Shot Ant & Roach Killer (side note: I later found out this only kills bugs on contact and is not a repellent) onto the baseboards and the crevices where the kitchen cabinets meet the wall.

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10 Ways to Keep Those Outdoor Bugs Away — Reader Intelligence Report

I've lived in the Northeast for more than 10 years now and somehow every summer I forget about bugs. As the days become longer I get excited about grilling, ice cream, and shorts. (Ignorance is bliss!) But then one night I'll be on someone's rooftop about to open a beer and I'll be painfully reminded of blood-thirsty mosquitoes, or that bee that just won't seem to move away from the guacamole. What are you supposed to do? Stay inside? Buy a house with a screened-in porch? Neither!

Our readers shared their best advice for dealing with bugs when they're outside this summer. From purchasing special clothing to clipping dryer sheets to your shorts, there are a whole slew of ideas you need to try.

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8 DEET-Free Bug Sprays for Outdoor Entertaining — Summer Evenings

Be it cocktail hour on the patio with a few friends or a rowdy backyard clambake with the entire neighborhood, nothing can ruin a food-centric summertime fête like dozens — maybe even hundreds! — of uninvited guests who rudely show up unannounced and proceed to buzz in your ear before digging in ... to your exposed flesh.

Given that mosquitoes and other biting insects have long been a scourge of summer hosts and hostesses (and anyone else with a pulse) everywhere, it doesn't hurt to be prepared and serve up some all-natural protection along with the rest of your offerings. Here are a few DEET-free repellent options to have on hand — and on table — that are effective and don't smell offensive.

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5 Ways to Keep Bees Away from Your Patio Picnic — Patio Perfection

Summer is the best time to eat on your patio — it's also peak season for bees. "Late summer and early fall is when stinging insect colonies reach their peak population levels," says Dr. Jim Fredericks, chief entymologist for the National Pest Management Association. Across the United States, we get many different species of bees, including carpenter bees, bumble bees, and honey bees, and we tend to think of yellow jackets as bees, even though they are actually wasps. (So many bees!)

While most bees can and will sting humans, their level of aggression can vary, which can make them an unpredictable (and possibly painful) nuisance — or a real health issue. "People with known allergies to insect stings or asthma should be particularly careful, since the stings could trigger a potentially life-threatening reaction," says Dr. Fredericks. (I know this to be true because I'm still recovering from Macauley Caulkin's untimely death in My Girl, circa 1991.)

So we do not want bees, but they're around. Luckily, there are a few solid things you can do to keep them away from your cookout.

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The Best Things You Can Do to Keep Pests and Insects Out of the Kitchen — Tips from The Kitchn

Some people may prefer granite over marble. Some like galley kitchens versus open concepts. If there is one thing we can all agree on when it comes to the kitchen, though, it's that pests and insects do not belong in there. "Eh, I don't mind all those ants in the pantry," said no home cook ever.

That's why we've been working on a bunch of stories to help you trap, outsmart, and even banish these creepy crawlies from the kitchen. And we've put them all in once place. Keep reading to learn how to handle six of the most common — and not fun! — problems.

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5 Ways to Keep Flies Away from Your Patio Picnic — Patio Perfection

Eating outdoors is one of the best parts of summer — but once you get beyond the safety of your screened windows and doors, flies can be a real pain. They're mostly annoying (all that buzzing around and landing on your arms!), but they're also kinda gross considering how much time they spend flying from surface to surface (raw hamburgers to fruit salad ... ), trailing any bacteria they encounter from place to place.

Here's how to minimize outdoor flies so you can enjoy dining al fresco.

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