It’s the time of year that will make many shudder and sweat – it’s SPIDER SEASON! Spiders have spent the last few months feeding on bugs and insects, and will now be venturing inside to find a mate.
Historically, we’ve seen spider season occuring in the early Autumn. However, in 2018 and again in 2019, we’ve seen spiders beginning their quest earlier than normal – which explains why you’ve found several in your house already. Recent heavy rainfall has not helped the situation, encouraging spiders to make their way inside, and often into our homes.
Why are spiders coming into my house?
Central heating provides the perfect weather conditions for female spiders to lay their eggs before hibernating. Prof Adam Hart, an entomologist at the University of Gloucestershire, explains that 80% of the spiders you’ll see in your homes this season are males looking for female spiders to partner up with.
What to do if you get bitten…
A spider bite typically appears as small puncture marks on your skin which can be painful and result in swelling and redness. The NHS states, “bites from spiders in the UK are uncommon, but some native spiders – such as the false widow spider – are capable of giving a nasty bite.”
If bitten, the NHS advises you to:
wash the affected area with soap and water
apply a cold compress to the swollen area for at least 10 minutes
avoid home remedies such as vinegar solutions or bicarbonate of soda.
Seek medical help immediately if you have any worrying symptoms after a bite.
How to keep spiders out of your home this spider season…
There are numerous made up remedies and unevidenced recommendations that can be found online. These are often a waste of your time and effort, and aren’t guaranteed to work. The most effective way to discourage spiders from your home is to plug in an ultrasonic repeller.
Ultrasound does not harm the spider, it simply causes discomfort through a high-frequency sound that is too high for human hearing. It won’t affect you but for the spider, we compare it to a constant smoke alarm going off – unpleasant and leaving them finding someone else’s home to crawl into. With an ultrasonic device, there is no need for dangerous poisons that could be harmful to pets or children. Our Whole House Advanced Spider Repellent combines ultrasonic frequency with electromagnetic waves, making it even more effective for stopping spiders invading your space.
“I love this product. Mine has worked perfectly for about 3 years now. Bought second one in case this one stops working. Never had any spiders up to now.” 5/5 star rating – Mrs S
“Huge spiders, the biggest I have ever seen, visited daily so I now use these plugs to help. 3 cats uneffected by them and spider numbers greatly reduced.” 5/5 star rating – Trusted Customer
Cats are great, there’s a reason why there are over 2 million cat videos on YouTube alone! What’s not so great for the neighbours of cats is when they foul in your garden, torment your family of guinea pigs, or attack that sweet little robin that you’ve been watching out the window. If this sounds familiar and you’d like to learn about our purrrr-fectly safe methods of deterring cats from trespassing in your garden through the use of cat repellents, read on…
These are our most effective solution for deterring cats from your garden. When triggered by a motion sensor, this type of repellent emits a high frequency sound that cannot be heard by human or bird hearing. Although the sound is rather annoying for your backyard trespassing cat, it will effectively prevent them from wanting to return to your garden.
But hang on a moment, how long can you expect for this product to officially stop your cat problem? Typically, cats that visit your garden every now and again will be stopped within 7 days of the device being switched on. However, it may take between 14-28 days to break the habit of a regular visitor.
Prevention with Anti-Climb Strips
Are you fed up of worrying about what your neighbouring cat will leave behind after its next visit? Well, our first recommendation would be to prevent cats from entering your garden in the first place.
An affordable way to do this is to add in PestBye anti-climb strips to your garden walls and fences. These anti-climb strips are easily cut, bent, and attached with glue, nails or screws – making them super easy to install around your garden. Available in a range of colours, you can also disguise the anti-climb strips to match your fencing so that they don’t interfere with your garden decor or design.
These end-to-end strips work effectively to prevent cats from climbing or sitting on your wall, but don’t worry! The anti-climb strips only cause discomfort for the cat, not cuts, scratches, or wounds.
Protect Your Flower Beds With Deterrent Sprays
If you’re a keen gardener who spends time caring for and proudly designing your flower beds, a neighbouring cat can be quite a disappointment when it fouls on or rips apart your delightful display. A simple deterrent spray containing deterring natural oils could be the fast and easy solution that you have been looking for.
You can use the deterrent spray around your garden or allotment and it will not harm any animals or your plants. Cats (and dogs) will be off-put by the scent of the natural oil aromas and leave your vegetable patch or flower bed well and truly alone!
Are you concerned about protecting your small pets from predators?
Unfortunately, for many small pet owners, foxes are a worry when it comes to caring for your pets in outdoor hutches or cages. Foxes can strike at any time, day or night so it is always best to consider repellent options before it’s too late. Despite the fox’s success in breaking into your rabbit or guinea-pigs hutch, shock alone is enough to harm or kill your beloved small pets, especially if they are young. Remember, prevention is always the best cure.
There are a number of useful methods designed to deter foxes and protect your small pets. We’ve put together a list to help you decide the best option for your circumstances.
A popular option for many worried pet owners, is the Scoot fox scent repellent. This non-toxic formula is used to keep foxes away from your hutches and your garden for good. Scoot works to trick the predator into believing that it is walking in the territory of another fox, causing it to vacate the premises. The biodegradable product is safe for use on gardens and crops, working to mimic the scent markings of foxes and deter the attention of others.
Observing the behaviour of an existing fox will be highly useful in determining where to apply the fox scent repellent. If you are unsure of where to apply the product, it is recommended to begin with perimeters and places where existing fox scent can be smelled. Be sure to apply the product to any areas of “scorching” on lawns, as this is indicative of persistent fouling. Application will need to be repeated as advised, for optimum results.
Alternatively, a safe and effective option that also protects your garden from other pests such as un-welcomed cats or squirrels, is the Jet Spray Repeller. A motion sensor detects movement of a warm body, triggering a water spray response. Of course, if your small pets are likely to trigger the motion sensor, ensure that the repeller is triggered in an appropriate position away from their cage.The repeller connects to your garden hose, and it will not release the five second spray unless triggered, meaning no water wastage as a result.
Ultrasonic repellers trigger a short burst of noise, designed to discomfort the fox. The frequency of the sound is too high to be heard by human ears, but it is effective for dogs and cats. Birds will not be deterred or dis-encouraged by the repeller from your garden. The sudden burst of sound typically lasts for around 25 seconds. Designed to operate day or night, rise or shine, the battery powered Advanced Fox Scarer by PestBye is easy to install and simple to use. For a mains powered option, the PestBye Ultrasonic Pest Repeller includes a strobe light combined with the ultrasonic to unnerve unwanted visitors. It is recommended to be mindful of your small pets’ hearing and responses to this type of repeller. However, its effectiveness should not be ignored. If you’d like to prevent unwanted visitors in your garden, place an ultrasonic repeller near where they enter your outdoor space, but far enough away from your hutch.
Guard your garden by installing fencing in your outdoor space. The most optimum fencing will include chicken wire around the base of the trellis to prevent a fox from getting through any small gaps or anything getting out! Be sure to keep a close eye on any gaps or holes where a fox could gain entry to your garden, you’d be surprised at what small gaps they can squeeze through!
Electric fencing is also an option for protecting your garden from foxes. When touched, the transformer gives off a low and harmless electric pulse. The shock is enough to warn off unwanted visitors, causing them to avoid your garden in the future, without causing them long-lasting harm.
Keep your hutches safe, locked, and structured at all times to ensure your bunnies or guinea pigs are safe. As mentioned at the beginning of this article, prevention is always the best cure! View Primrose’s full range of fox repellents here.
Evie works in the Primrose Marketing Team.
Growing up in the English countryside, she likes nothing more than to be surrounded by nature’s peace and quiet, with the addition of the family pets of course!
Evie is passionate about all things digital marketing and loves the challenge of combining creativity with online content.
When not at her desk, you’ll typically find her in the gym, posting on social media, or watching a popular series on Netflix!
It is well known that slugs are widely disliked among gardeners, especially when they are invading your vegetable patch. It is true that slugs love to munch on your cucumbers, tomatoes and lettuce – however, slugs are widely misunderstood creatures. Around 95% of slugs you won’t actually see nibbling on your plants as they live underground. Most slugs feed off decomposing plants, making them a vital part of our ecosystem. This is part of the reason natural slug deterrents are the best bet in getting rid of slugs from your garden.
Slugs are nocturnal creatures, only coming out at night to feed. They are lovers of dark, damp environments and are most active during the warmer more humid months; however you may see slugs around any temperature over 5 degrees celsius. Tell-tale signs include slime trails and irregular holes in the foliage of your plants. If the former is causing you bother in removal, white vinegar is a good solution.
Of the slugs that do feed off the plants you have lovingly grown, there are a number of things you can do to deter slugs naturally and organically. Read on to find out more about natural slug deterrents in the garden.
There are many benefits to choosing natural slug deterrents over traditional chemical pest control.
One thing to point out is that the use of slug pellets does not just affect slugs – it also affects the predators of slugs, including hedgehogs, ground beetles and frogs. The use of these slug pellets not only kill off these predators’ food source, but also cause them to ingest the poison present in the slug corpses they eat. Slug pellets can also pose a danger to any pets you may have.
Another is the effectiveness of slug pellets – although they are the number one choice for gardeners when it comes to slug pest control, they are not necessarily the most effective. They are said to only kill 10% of the slug population in your garden.
If you are gardening organically (and there are many benefits to doing so), slug pellets should not be used as they contain harmful chemicals that will disrupt the natural balance of your garden. With so many natural slug deterrents for your garden available, there is really no need to use slug pellets, unless as a very last resort.
Natural Slug Deterrents: Prevention
As mentioned previously, slugs thrive in damp conditions where soil structure and drainage is poor. Improving the soil in your garden may help deter slugs from making a home there.
One way to do this is by adding organic matter to your soil in the form of compost. You can find out more about how to compost here. You can also add leaf mould to your soil, which will improve its structure along with encouraging beneficial bacteria.
Creating a pond or water garden will help improve the drainage of your soil, as well as adding a beautiful extra feature to your garden.
Cultivating the soil in your garden involves breaking up and loosening it with a rake. Regularly cultivating will disturb slugs’ environment, leaving them more vulnerable to predators. It will also allow for the top of the soil to dry out more, resulting in limited movement for slugs.
Slugs thrive in dark, damp areas and make home in decaying plant matter, so keeping your garden clear from any debris will help deter them. Be sure to put any leaves and grass clippings into your compost heap instead of leaving it around. Additionally, be vigilant when tidying up any stacks of flower pots as you are probably likely to find a whole family of molluscs in there.
Choose Resistant & Trouble-Free Plants
Instead of waging a war against slugs once your garden is in full bloom, choosing plant varieties that are resistant to slugs may save you a lot of stress and time trying to deter slugs.
The following annuals and perennials are particularly resistant against slugs:
Although many believe slugs will eat anything and everything in their garden, there are some plants which slugs will not touch with a barge pole. Try planting these near the plants they love to deter them from the whole area. Slugs tend to dislike strong-smelling plants, and plants with hairy foliage. Here are some examples:
You can also try planting varieties that slugs love away from your prize plants. This will distract them away from what you don’t want them to eat. Lawn camomile is a good one for this. Rub the leaves of the lawn camomile to further release the aroma that attracts the slugs to the plant.
Natural Slug Deterrents: Attracting Predators
As mentioned previously, the predators of slugs include hedgehogs, ground beetles, thrushes, frogs & toads. Encouraging these natural predators in your garden will help control the slug population. There are a number of things you can do to help attract these predators to your garden.
Plant perennials where ground beetles can take shelter
Natural Slug Deterrents: Barrier Methods
You can deter slugs directly from your plants by creating barriers around them. Barrier methods come in the form of barriers that slugs cannot physically cross, and barriers that slugs could cross but would prefer not to due to discomfort and unpleasantness. Be sure your plants are free from slugs to start with before implementing either of these methods – the key is to trap the slug in the area away from your plant, not near it!
Slugs do not like to touch copper, as when they do, a chemical reaction occurs and they are given an unpleasant shock. This form of deterrent is available in the form of copper tape, copper rings and copper pot feet. Tape is useful to stick around the top of planters. Copper rings can be placed around small groups of plants.
Creating a barrier of broken eggshells around your plants will deter slugs, as they will dislike moving across the sharp and jagged edges. In addition, the eggshells add calcium to your soil as they decompose. Be sure the eggshells are clean and the inner membrane is removed before spreading around your plants.
Nutshells work in a similar way to that of above. The hard shells of nuts such as walnuts work best.
Not only is seaweed great for your soil, it is also a natural repellent for slugs. Slugs consist mainly of water, and the high salt content of seaweed will put them off venturing through it, even if there is food on the other side. Place the seaweed powder or fresh seaweed around your plants to ward slugs off. In dry weather, fresh seaweed will dry out and become rough, further deterring slugs from crossing it.
If all your efforts have failed, and slugs are still a problem, there are a few ways you can extinguish slugs you see in your garden. Be wary that doing this will affect the natural biological cycle of your garden and its delicate ecosystem, so it is only to be used as a very last resort.
Slugs are attracted to citrus. Leaving grapefruit halves around your garden and leaving overnight will attract slugs, and they will take shelter under the skin. In the morning, collect up the slugs and dispose of them in the compost heap.
Slugs love the smell of beer. Take a small container, such as an old tuna tin and fill it with beer. Slugs will take a sip and end up falling in and drowning. Be sure to place the container above ground, as otherwise it will kill other wildlife such as ground beetles, which are actually a predator of slugs. Although this method is effective, it will only trap slugs within a few feet of the beer, so a lot of beer traps are needed.
Overall, there are numerous natural slug deterrents available for you to try. If you try any of the above, be sure to let us know in the comments!
Megan works in the Primrose marketing team. When she is not at her desk you will find her half way up a hill in the Chilterns or enjoying the latest thriller series on Netflix. Megan also enjoys cooking vegetarian feasts with veggies from her auntie’s vegetable garden.