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Does Mulch Attract Termites?

March 29, 2016 | Termite Information

does mulch attract termitesTechnically mulch does not attract termites, but they do find their way into the mulch because it creates a moist environment. Remember that the ground is filled with all kinds of insects including termites. They like to inhabit any place that has a lot of moisture, so the thicker the mulch that you place on the ground the more insects you will have. That is why pest control professionals tell homeowners not to place mulch up against their house because it gives termites an easier pathway to get into your home. You see, the mulch will basically disguise their tunneling activities that they perform underground to get into your home. It doesn’t matter what your mulch is made out of because it simply acts as a cover for termites. You could have mulch made out of bark, wood, rubber or even gravel and it wouldn’t matter.

Even though termites like to feast on wood, they are not actually attracted to it. They just discover it because it is a place where they can keep cool and moist. But if you have wood chips mixed in with your mulch then they will feast on it. So try to use other materials in your mulch besides wood just to be safe. When you place the mulch outside make sure it is at least one foot away from the foundation of your house. You also want to have at least six inches of dirt between your home’s foundation and the wooden siding above it.

Just remember that dryness is your friend. When you go to water your yard you don’t want to get the strip around your home wet. If you have sprinklers then make sure they don’t shoot toward the walls of your exterior. Keep an eye on your mulch too and avoid getting that wet. If you live in an area that gets a lot of rain or if your yard consistently stays wet then limit your layer of mulch to less than two inches. You should also rake the mulch periodically in order to ventilate and dry it out.

If you follow all of this advice then you should greatly reduce the chances of having any kind of termite problems. But you still need to check the foundation inside and outside of your home on a regular basis, especially if you have mulch in your yard. It is important to catch any termite damage early on in order to limit the amount of expense it will take to fix or replace the damaged areas.

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