Welcome back to the Ray Pest Control blog! The holidays are officially here, which means homes will be filled with lots of holiday foods, treats, festive plants and trees, and of course, guests visiting from out of town. While the holidays just wouldn’t be the same without any of these things, it’s important to keep in mind that these can also bring unwanted guests into the home—yes, friends, we’re talking about a wide variety of creepy crawlies and fuzzy critters. In our last blog series, we shared tips for keeping your home free of bed bugs, so be sure to read these two posts if you haven’t already. Here are some tips for keeping all sorts of unwelcome creatures away from your Piedmont home during the holidays.

Inspect Holiday Decorations

Most people store their holiday decorations in the garage, basement, attic, or crawlspace, which are some of the most common homes for a wide assortment of insects and other pests. It’s always a good idea to store decorations in air-tight sealed containers to keep critters out, but many people also use bags and boxes that don’t seal. Before placing decorative objects around the home and hanging them on the Christmas tree, give them a good look over to check for spiders and other bugs, especially if they’ve been stored in open containers.

Check Holiday Plants & Trees

Fresh Christmas trees are still just as popular as the artificial kind, as are a variety of plants— there’s nothing like setting out brilliant red poinsettias around the house to encourage holiday cheer. These and other holiday plants are often home to spiders, insects, and other pests before they even come into your home. Check recently purchased plants and Christmas trees before bringing them into your home, giving them a gentle shake to knock any critters loose. You can also make a peppermint spray by adding about 20-30 drops of peppermint essential oil to water in a spray bottle. Bugs don’t like peppermint and other minty plants, so spraying interior plants and Christmas trees with this safe solution can help keep the bugs away while also magnifying the holiday aromas.

Place Screens Over Vents & Chimneys

Insects and even small rodents like mice can make their way into the home through vents and chimneys. To keep these critters out, visit your local hardware store and purchase vent and chimney screens to place over these openings. The screens won’t interfere with your HVAC system, but may keep bugs from crawling out of vents.

Be Mindful With Firewood

For some, the holidays are the only time they use their wood burning fireplaces, yet they will keep a surplus of firewood stacked against their home year-round. Stacks of firewood become the perfect homes for all sorts of bugs, but especially spiders. Before bringing firewood into your home, tap the wood on the ground to shake off any bugs. Avoid storing firewood indoors, and try not to set firewood on your floors for too long to keep bugs from making your home their home.

Call Ray Pest Control

If you notice an uptick in bug activity in your Piedmont home around the holidays, call Ray Pest Control! Our professionals will get rid of those unwanted house guests quickly and safely so that you and your loved ones can enjoy the holidays to the fullest. Whether it’s bugs, spiders, or rodents, our team of Top Rated Local® pest control experts are here to help you during the holidays and year-round! Tune in next time as we look at five more tips for keeping your home pest-free during the holidays. Happy holiday decorating!