Does hardscape / stones / mulch makes a difference ?

Old 06-14-18, 06:37 PM
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jan 2015
Location: United States
Posts: 462
Received 2 Upvotes on 2 Posts
Does hardscape / stones / mulch makes a difference ?

My entire neighborhood suffers from pretty high level of gnats...little bit of mosquito and some annoying flies....all neighbors are pretty good and try to keep everything clean and dry but the soil is mostly clay and after a lot of rain you can see how it saturates with water ....overall it seems those flying insects just like the entire area.....

In any case....I am now planning for major work around my property.... thinking about reducing overall lawn area for pavers, some hardscaping and then doing some landscaping (plants, small trees).

My question - will the choices in any way help reduce the overall "desirability" of my property for the flying insects ?
What I mean.... for example: would using mulch be better than river stones ?
Are there certain plants I should avoid and in turn some that I should plant as they are not attractive to insects ?

should I have lifehedge or fence ?

I do use Talstar frequently which helps for some I would like to know that I don't do anything to actually encourage them coming back onto my property by the choices I am about to make....if they make any difference at all....

Thank you!
Old 06-14-18, 11:11 PM
Group Moderator
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: WI/MN
Posts: 18,893
Received 1,197 Upvotes on 1,152 Posts
We don't have mosquitoes or other such pests in my neighborhood, which most people from this part of the country find hard to believe. I have always attributed to the fact it was a new neighborhood when we moved in and lacked the shrubbery and trees in which those pests live. Just my hypothesis, nothing tested to back it up.
Old 06-15-18, 05:08 AM
Marq1's Avatar
Join Date: Sep 2016
Location: USA MI
Posts: 9,453
Received 1,137 Upvotes on 1,031 Posts
The amount of area that would be effected with either mulch or pavers or rock beds is minute compared to the overall area that it probably wont make a difference what is used.
Old 06-15-18, 07:52 AM
Join Date: Nov 2012
Location: USA
Posts: 2,260
Received 278 Upvotes on 238 Posts
I'd subcontract that out to wildlife that eats insects.

Plant shrubs and flowers that attract birds. Find an out of the way spot for a bat house, average bat eats 7,000 mosquitos/gnats each night.

How to attract bug-eating birds to your garden
Fruit-bearing plants, piles of leaves and other backyard choices can bring birds and get rid of insects.
Old 06-15-18, 10:56 AM
Forum Topic Moderator
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: United States
Posts: 1,856
Received 90 Upvotes on 83 Posts
Eliminating standing water, unless it's very temporary, is probably the best thing that a homeowner can do and it sounds like you and your neighbors have a good grip on that. The trouble with flying insects, as others have pointed out, is that they fly. Some are better fliers than others, for sure, but they still cover lots of area in a short time.

Mulch versus stones? I doubt that it would make a difference, but a good person to ask about your situation would be the local county agricultural extension agent who would be a source of good local knowledge and objectivity. Here in PA it would be the Penn State extension office, not sure about your state but should be listed under county offices.
Old 06-15-18, 11:31 AM
Join Date: Jan 2013
Location: U.S.A.
Posts: 1,902
Received 73 Upvotes on 66 Posts
Speaking strictly from personal experience, I would say that the clay is the primary contributor, and not much that you can do about that, other than spray as you have been. We have a mobile home community not far from us where the sod was laid directly on clay, and any time I have been there within a few days after a good rain the ground has been spongy, and the bugs are a constant nuisance. As far as mulch, I don't think that it is any better or worse than anything else. We've had a lot of rain this year, so a couple of weeks ago when I took a bucket scoop from our mulch pile it was crawling and swarming with all kinds of bugs, gnats, mosquitoes, and whatever. But we spread it out where we wanted it and within a day or two it had dried out and was perfectly fine. Point being, as long as it's not piled so that it holds moisture I don't think mulch is going to add to the problem.

Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Ask a Question
Question Title:
Your question will be posted in: