General Information

Watch for Lyme Disease

by Teresa Odle

It’s the most common illness caused by arthropods (basically, crawling insects), yet some cases of Lyme disease are not diagnosed; only 150,000 total cases have been reported to the CDC since 1982.

Deer Ticks can be found almost anywhere but be especially alert in leaves and tall grass

Bites from infected deer ticks cause Lyme disease through an infection with the bacterium Borrelia burgdorferi. The reason for its common name is that the disease was first recognized in a town in Connecticut called Lyme in 1975. It’s still most common in the Northeast but is slowly spreading west. Cases also have been reported along the West coast.

Symptoms

Diagnosing Lyme disease can be tough because the symptoms can spread throughout the body and mimic other diseases and conditions. But here are a few to watch for, especially if you’ve come in contact with a deer tick:

  • Chills and fever.
  • Fatigue.
  • Joint and muscle pain.
  • Swollen lymph nodes.
  • Headache.
  • A telltale sign of Lyme disease may be a circular rash that appears one day to one month after the tick bite. It may itch and have red splotches. The center may clear up so that the rash takes on a target-like appearance.

As Lyme disease progresses, it can cause numbness or tingling in arms and legs, a sore throat, severe fatigue, a higher fever and abnormal pulse. If not treated, Lyme disease can disable a person by causing pain and swelling that makes joints virtually immobile and neurological problems like confusion and short-term memory loss. Certain antibiotics can treat the disease if it’s caught early.

Tick Areas

The ticks that spread Lyme disease are much smaller than common dog or cattle ticks, so many people may not know they’ve been bitten. Lyme disease usually occurs in the spring or summer, when nymph ticks are feeding, but the symptoms may not appear until later. Avoiding areas where there are ticks, wearing long pants and long-sleeved shirts that are light colored can help prevent tick bites.

Using tick and insect repellants that contain DEET or permethrin also helps to prevent tick bites. Experts recommend aerosol spray and light use on children; adults and children should avoid use on their hands and faces.

If you do get bitten, remove the tick as soon as possible. Use a pair of tweezers or this handy tick nipper removal tool to be sure to grab the tick by the head or mouth parts right where they’re attached to your skin. Don’t grab the tick’s body. Pull firmly and steadily. And contrary to popular belief, there is no need to irritate the tick first with a hot match or alcohol to get it to back out.

Deer Fence

Another way to prevent getting bit by a Lyme disease-carrying tick is to eliminate the number of deer in your yard or garden. Deerbusters.com carries a wide deer fence selection for any type of home.

Half Off to Keep Deer Off Plants

by Teresa Odle

Once you see the “telltail” signs of deer damage on your plants, it’s often too late. Because deer have no upper incisors, they tear your precious vegetation with their lower incisors and upper palate, leaving the sure-sign jagged edges on plant foliage.

Deer Repellents

Deer repellents can ward off deer – at least temporarily. With attention and repeated use, you can keep deer away from your crops and ornamentals, especially when the plants are at their most vulnerable or productive stages. And now’s the time to buy, while Deerbusters is offering 50 percent off on most Deerbuster Deer Repellents.

If you’ve got large plants to protect, a concentrate is your best bet. It costs a little more but goes further. Concentrate is more compact to store than ready-made repellents and with the 2.5 gallon bottle, you can mix up to 20 gallons of premium liquid repellent before all is said and done. That should cover the equivalent of 3,000 to 4,000 high shrubs or flowers. Or you might prefer powder, which comes in a 16-oz. size. And if your deer are finicky and only after your hostas, a bottle of premixed spray is all you’ll need. All of the Deerbusters Deer Repellents are made with natural ingredients — egg, garlic, and hot pepper.

Keep a record of your regular spraying to be sure to spray regularly and stay one step ahead of these quick and quiet creatures. These repellents will work for up to three months before reapplication.

Enter the coupon code Protect10 at checkout to take 50% off on all DeerBusters Brand deer repellent. Not valid on hanging sachets or weather shield products.  Expires July 21st, 2010.

Deer Fencing Reduces Spread of Lyme Disease

New Methods for Preventing Lyme Disease

With symptoms ranging from fever, headaches and fatigue to damaging infections of the joints, heart and nervous system, Lyme disease is a significant health concern.

Lyme disease is caused by the bacteria Borrelia Burgdorferi which is transmitted to humans and animals through tick bites. “Although many tick species can transmit Lyme disease, deer ticks are primary carriers in the United States,” says Jason Wiles, wildlife control expert and general manager of DeerBusters.com.

Deer Ticks

White-tailed deer are the favorite hosts of deer ticks. In the warm summer months, when deer become extremely active, deer ticks thrive. When there is no deer fencing around a yard, deer can enter in search of food. This means deer ticks and Lyme disease follow.

According to Wiles, “deer fencing is the most effective means for excluding deer.” Wiles adds that “animal repellents, which deter deer using odors and chemicals, and animal scaring devices, which deter deer using sounds, can be satisfactory alternatives when deer fencing is not feasible.”

Why Deer Fencing is the Best Choice

According to the National Center for Biological Information, a division of the National Institute of Health, the use of deer fencing has been proven to reduce the risk of Lyme disease by 83-97% (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov). Without deer entering the area surrounding your home, new deer ticks become limited and eventually, existing deer ticks become scarce.

When choosing a method for deer control, factors to consider include: environmental impact, cost, value, safety, aesthetics and practicality.

“Deer fencing is available in a variety of sizes, styles and prices and can be judged by its strength (or breaking load), warranty, ease of installation and the aesthetics of its design,” explains Wiles. “Virtually invisible deer fencing, for example, can be highly effective without disrupting the look of surrounding property.”

According to Wiles, “non-toxic, organic deer repellents can be an excellent alternative to harsh chemical repellents. In addition to the environmental benefits, organic repellents can be safer for children and pets.”

By protecting your living area from deer, you may reduce your risk of Lyme disease by as much as 97%. For additional information on deer control products, visit wildlife control retailer DeerBusters at: http://www.deerbusters.com.

Take Your Garden to New Heights with Trellises & Arbors

Trellises and arbors make aesthetically pleasing and functional additions to any garden. The benefits of growing with a garden structure include…

  • Flowers and vegetables grow upwards and save space
  • Crops grown on structures are easier to harvest and stay cleaner
  • Disease is minimized when plants receive better air circulation

Choosing Plants that Climb

Flowers and vegetables that like to climb will grow beautifully on a trellis or arbor. The trick is to choose your plants and then choose the structure that can best support them. Some plants that grow well on garden structures include:

  • Peas
  • Pole Beans
  • Tomatoes
  • Trumpet Vines
  • Wisteria
  • Morning Glories
  • Roses
  • Clematis
  • Cantaloups
  • Squash
  • Honeysuckle Vines
  • Climbing Hydrangeas
  • Baby Pumpkins
  • Jasmine
  • Ivy

Seed Starting: A How-to Guide

The members of our deer fencing company love gardening, so we’ve put together our own how-to guide for seeding:

  1. Make sure you have all necessary supplies. Peat pots or other pots and planters, tools, potting mix, seeds, plant markers, watering supplies, grow lights, fertilizers and heated seed germination equipment are just some examples of what you may need. Check out the Seed Starting section at Mastergardening.com for a complete list of products.
  2. Plan your garden and choose your seeds carefully. Be sure to read the instructions on the back of each seed packet for the zone in which you reside. Follow the recommended timeline (for example, planting three weeks before the last frost) to achieve optimal results.
  3. Loosen and dampen potting mix before putting it into peat pots or other seed starting containers. The mix should be thoroughly wet but not dripping.
  4. Fill peat pots (about 2/3 full) with prepared potting mix. Tap the bottom of the pots on a hard surface to settle the potting mix. Avoid packing the mix into the peat pots.
  5. Plant at least three seeds in each peat pot. Remember to read the instructions as some seeds require pre-soaking or chilling. Cover the seeds with soil according to instructions and water them again. Be sure to use plant markers for easy identification later.
  6. Using any type of plastic, cover the peat pots loosely. The plastic will hold in heat and moisture like a greenhouse but must be removed as soon as seedlings begin to emerge.
  7. While waiting for seedlings to emerge, keep the soil moist, but not drenched. The ideal temperature range for seed germination is 65 to 70 degrees F. Heating mats or seed growing systems are great options.
  8. Once the seedlings emerge, they will need between 12 and 18 hours of light each day. A fluorescent or high intensity plant light is the best choice.
  9. Once the seedlings grow true leaves (not to be confused with the cotyledons that emerge at first), fertilizer should be used.
  10. At 2-3 inches tall, the seedlings can be transferred to larger pots. If two or more seedlings have grown in the same container, cut off all but the strongest seedling. Remember to cut instead of pulling out unwanted seedlings as roots may be intertwined.
  11. Allow two to three weeks to introduce seedlings to the outdoors gradually. To do this, move your seedlings to a shady spot for increasing amounts of time each day. Gradually increase their time outdoors (protecting them from inclement weather). Remember to water the seedlings before and after planting.

Grow Your Way out of Recession: Victory Garden Revival!

Today, as growing economic strain collides with growing concern for the environment, a modern-day victory garden movement is emerging. During both world wars, the American government promoted victory gardens to ease the pressure of public food supply. Consequently, citizens who grew their own vegetables, fruits and herbs became more self-sufficient and less vulnerable to economic hardships.

Unlike the original victory gardens, modern-day victory gardens focus on environmental and financial victories. However, self-sufficiency, especially during a time of war, benefits everyone.

The Benefits

Starting a vegetable, fruit and herb garden requires a modest financial investment, mainly in the beginning, but the long-term benefits are amazing. You will save money on groceries while providing easy access to healthy, even organic, produce. Plus, gardening is a fun, rewarding hobby for all ages.

Produce bought at grocery stores can travel hundreds of miles from grower to grocer, wasting gas and energy. This is not true of food harvested from your home garden. You can further benefit the environment and your wallet by limiting your water usage, avoiding harmful chemicals and using natural compost. And if your garden produces large harvests, you could sell or donate the leftovers.

How to Start

To get started, consider which type of garden would best suit your lifestyle. Container gardening on a sunny patio or balcony is great for individuals who don’t have much yard space. MasterGardening.com products such as AeroGarden, SproutGrower and windowsill garden kits work nicely for small indoor gardens.

For an outdoor garden, choose a sunny, level, easily accessible location. Using a raised bed is very convenient if you have back problems and the added height helps.

Next, you will need tools. At the bare minimum, you should have a shovel, a wheelbarrow, a spreader, a hose with a spray nozzle and a hoe. Buying high quality tools is worthwhile because they will last for many years.

Once you have tools, choose which vegetables, fruits and herbs you would like to grow. Herbs, tomatoes, sprouts, wheatgrass, lettuce, peppers and strawberries work well for indoor and container gardens. Outdoor gardeners will need to consider planting seasons and climate zones. Learn your USDA climate zone by looking at the MasterGardening.com zone map.

Research Your Seeds

A little research on proper planting times can save you a lot of money and trouble. Libraries and the Internet are great for learning when to plant which seeds. Read your seed packets for specific instructions on planting depth and spacing.

Americans have become very sensitive to environment and health concerns, but organic and natural products are expensive. The modern-day victory garden is an enjoyable solution for people who want to eat healthy and live green for years to come without spending a ton of money.

We’re a Garden Watchdog Top 5 Company for 2010!

Were a Garden Watchdog Top 5 company for 2010!

We’re a Garden Watchdog Top 5 company for 2010!

Great news! As many of you may know, each company in the Garden Watchdog is categorized by their specialty. The highest rated companies in each category is then awarded with an annual “Top 5″ award, and our company has been awarded a Top 5 designation this year!

Specializing in: “Animal Repellents (Fencing And Chemical Barriers)” and “Plants: Deer Resistant.”

Happy New Year!

The staff at DeerBusters wishes you a prosperous and fruitful New Year!!

Merry Christmas!

The staff at Deerbusters wishes you a warm and festive Christmas!

3 Shopping Days Remaining!

3 shopping days remaining for ground shipping to arrive anywhere in the continental US before Christmas.  Order by December 15th to avoid having to expedite your gifts!