Preventing pest issues outside your facility

Jun 2, 2022, 08:47 AM by Fred Speer

Pests gain access to commercial properties in search of food, water, and shelter, but they are not native to food processing plants, hotels, or office buildings. They come from outdoors, and keeping them outdoors – in their natural environment – requires that you pay attention to the condition of your property’s landscape.

Even though a well-maintained landscape adds aesthetic appeal to a commercial facility, it can also serve as home to a variety of pests, and increase the threat of pests gaining access to structures.

Landscaping provides a place for such pests as rodents, flies, and certain species of beetles and stinging insects, to establish nesting locations near loading dock and entry doors, windows, ventilation outlets, and utility access points.

Facility and property managers should work with their maintenance department or landscape contractor to ensure that the exterior landscape of their facility is properly designed and maintained to help reduce pest pressure.

Landscapes are drawing cards for pests

Standard landscape maintenance practices – regularly mowing lawns, trimming trees and bushes, removing weeds, and thinning out or replacing densely overgrown shrubs and bushes with less dense varieties – will help reduce conducive conditions that enable pests.

  • Food sources, including vegetation near structures, can provide pests with all that they will need to survive. The sweet, sugary sap that plants produce is an attractive food source for ants and stinging insects, as are the aphids that also come to feed off the plants. Fruit trees, date palms, Algerian ivy, and boxelder trees are examples of food sources that are very appealing to many insects.
  • Harborage locations, such as rock or brush piles, dense foliage, mulch, or ground cover, provide an ideal pest harborage location. Mulch may look attractive, but it holds moisture and is attractive to cockroaches, ants, spiders, beetles, and termites. Maintain a two-foot barrier of stones that is free of grass, plants, or other organic material around the foundation to help create a pest buffer zone.
  • Access routes, including trees, bushes, and vines that touch a structure, provide pests with access to exterior walls and roofs where they can enter your business. Roof rats, squirrels, and ants will use tree limbs to access roof areas of a building, and then gain access to structures through vents and other openings.
  • Excess moisture is a sure-fire attractant for pests. Performing regular landscape and maintenance tasks – such as repairing broken sprinkler heads, sloping ground away from the building, directing sprinklers and downspouts away from structures, and using stone, rock, or other non-absorbent landscape materials – will help prevent pest-attracting standing water or excessive moisture.

Perform regular inspections

Conduct regular exterior inspections with your maintenance department, landscape contractor, and pest management service provider to identify conditions conducive to pests. Look at your property in a 3-D view – not just at ground level.

Identify openings in the foundation, around window and door openings, and around gutter and roof systems where pests can gain access or establish nesting locations. For example, stinging insects can establish nests under eaves and overhangs, in trees, or around outdoor signage.

Inspect equipment boneyards, seldom-used storage areas, and waste management areas. Weeds, excess moisture, and easily accessible nesting locations (e.g., storage pallets, food processing equipment, shipping containers or tubs, etc.) in these areas are attractive to pests.

Clark provides more than pest control

Even though Clark Pest Control is well known for its pest-fighting prowess, it also has proven green-thumb expertise. Our mission is to provide you with a healthy, green, weed-free and pest-free property and grounds, from our high-quality, customized fertilizers blended for your specific patches of lawn, to meticulous tree and shrub care, to safe and effective weed and vegetation control.

Our services are customizable, too. Clark’s Premier Commercial Lawn Care Service lets you combine any grounds care services, like lawn care, weed control, or tree and shrub care, with our pest control and/or our termite monitoring programs. You’ll receive a comprehensive umbrella service that delivers all your pest and grounds care needs together.

If you are looking for a pest management partner that understands your business and can help your company create a pest-free environment inside and out, call Clark Pest Control at (800) 936-3339.