Mosquitoes, roaches, fleas, flies, chinch bugs, army worms, wasps, spiders, spittlebugs and mice have become much more visible with the hot weather. Localized pop up thunder storms (gray leaf spot) have dominated our weather, so there is no telling how much rain we are getting across the area as a whole.

With three Possum stores in the area, I get a regular dose of how crazy our weather is in the Lowcountry. Possum’s West (West Ashley) might get an inch of rain, Possum’s North (North Charleston) might get a “spit” and Possum’s East (Mount Pleasant) nothing at all. It is amazing how the waterways affect the weather patterns.

The Lowcountry is one area that a rain gauge is a must. Rain gauges come in all shapes and sizes. Some are very expensive and record your rainfall and others are very basic and are less than $5. You can make your own “rain gauge” very easily from anything that has an equal top diameter and bottom diameter. Soup cans, tuna fish cans, a coffee cup or an empty can of canned possum (the other white meat) make great rain gauges. Be sure to place your rain gauge in an area where your house or trees are not going to skew your results.

Over the weekend, I was surveying the yard for potential mosquito breeding sites. We have this roll around basketball hoop in the driveway that requires water in the base to stabilize it. Of course someone lost the cap to the place you add water and now there is a great place for mosquitoes to breed. The slightest dent on my trash can lid also collects water where there were mosquito larva. I keep three sizes of measuring cups on a window sill near the hose where I mix up my “solutions” for killing weeds, fungus, and insects around the house. Rainwater had got in them, and you guessed it – more mosquito larvae. Tarp on my boat, magnolia leaves, 5 gallon bucket(s). Oh yeah, the rain gauge had mosquito larvae in it as well. Always empty out your rain gauge.

With all the insects that are active in the yard Cyonara Lawn and Garden Concentrate or RTS is an excellent product with a very broad label and a low price point. Cyonara is labeled to spray the outside of your house to keep roaches in check and even your vegetable garden, so you know it is safe. If you prefer organic products, EcoVia might be more to your liking.

Always read, understand and follow product label. The product label is a Federal Law.

Bill Lamson-Scribner can be reached during the week at Possum’s Landscape and Pest Control Supply. Possum’s has three locations 481 Long Point Rd in Mt. Pleasant (971-9601), 3325 Business Circle in North Charleston (760-2600), or 606 Dupont Rd, in Charleston (766-1511). Bring your questions to a Possum’s location, or visit us at possumsupply.com. You can also call in your questions to “The Garden Clinic,” Saturdays from noon to 1:00, on 1250 WTMA (The Big Talker). The Horticulture Hotline is available 24 / 7 at possumsupply.com.