Here’s the one flea guide you may be missing: how to get rid of fleas in the yard.
Because let’s face it. You’ve done everything else. You vacuum religiously. You’ve treated your pets for fleas. You’ve steam cleaned the carpet and washed everything you own. Your home finally seems clear of fleas.
So, are you safe?
Not exactly – there’s one more step you need to take to make sure the effort you made so far is worthwhile. And you need to take this step…outside.
How to Get Rid of Fleas in the Yard Naturally
If your pets like to spend time out in the yard, that’s most like the main source of the fleas that keep finding their way into your home.
The solution? Eliminate the fleas lurking right outside your house so no more of these blood sucking parasites can sneak in through the back door. Literally.
At the same time, your pets spend time in the yard so you don’t want to go the nuclear option. So how do you get rid of fleas in the yard without harming your pets? Here are the best things you can do to get rid of fleas naturally.
Clear out the yard
This simple step can go a long way in your battle against fleas – fleas love to to hide out where they’re protected from bright sunlight such as in piles of dead leaves so start by clearing debris from your yard.
Find the fleas’ favorite spots
Fleas and their larvae can usually be found within 50 feet of your pet’s favorite areas. Look for any warm, shady spots around the yard where your pet likes to hang such as under the porch, below shrubs or along the fence lines.
Your furry friend’s kennel is likely to be teeming with fleas, as well!
Once you locate where the fleas are hiding, you can employ some natural flea killers, such as…
Choose a natural flea killer for yard use
When it comes to choosing a natural flea killer for yard use, you have options. Here are the best ones.
Diatomaceous Earth (DE)
One effective natural alternative to using chemicals to kill fleas is to sprinkle your lawn with food-grade diatomaceous earth (DE). This will, however, only work if it won’t rain for the next couple of days since DE need to be in dry, dust form to work its magic.
Simply apply it to the flea-infested areas by using a dust spreading or tossing handfuls of it on the infested areas. When adult fleas make contact with it, the dust dries out their bodies, effectively killing them in a couple of hours.
Natural Flea Killer Sprays
Natural flea killer sprays use a combination of essential oils to kill fleas and flea eggs on contact. Our favorite ones to use outdoors are gentle enough to spray in areas where your pets spend a lot of time.
Wondercide’s Flea and Tick Spray is a great option. It uses cedarwood oil to kill and repel fleas as well as ticks. Vet’s Best Flea and Tick Yard and Kennel Spray is also safe and effective, using clove and peppermint oils to kill and repel fleas in all life stages.
Introduce predators (natural option)
Flea larvae and pupae are notoriously difficult to get rid of. Wouldn’t it be wonderful if you had something that eliminated them for you?
These microscopic worms do to fleas what fleas to do us – minus the itchy bites. Okay, not really – what they do is a lot worse. These parasitic worms basically enter their prey and infect them with toxic bacteria that kills them in 24 to 48 hours.
Their favorite prey? Fleas and ticks.
These killers will hunt down and kill fleas in the pre-adult, pupae, and larval stages of their growth, which account for 95 percent of the flea population.
The best part is that nematodes are a totally nox-toxic (at least to non-fleas) natural way to kill fleas before they even get old enough to bite you or your pets.
Just apply them onto areas where fleas live – preferably out of direct sunlight since nematodes don’t like the sun.
Let the sun shine bright
Both adult fleas and larvae moist, shady conditions so trim branches and foliage away to allow more sunlight to enter your yard. Adults fleas will hate it and the larvae won’t be able to live in a sunny environment.
Water it away
Frequently water your yard also helps get rid of flea larvae since it washes away adult flea droppings, which which the main food source for the larvae. Gross, but true.
What is the Best Flea Killer for Yard Use?
If you have a severe flea infestation in your immediate outdoor area and want immediate results, there are flea killers for the yard you can use to quickly make a dent in your flea population.
These are pesticide options, however, and are harmful to other, beneficial species that live in your yard like frogs and bees. Certain pesticides that are great for killing fleas, such as permethrin, can be toxic for pets as well, especially cats so please exercise caution when using pesticides.
Spray a flea killer for yards (chemical option)
Using an effective flea insecticide is an easy way to quickly kill off most of the adult flea population lurking in your yard. And you won’t even have to spray the whole yard – just focus your effort on treating the flea-infested places that you found – warm, shady spots. Open areas with plenty of sun exposure don’t need to be treated.
So what’s the best flea killer for yard use?
Talstar Pro insecticide is great flea-killing bang for your buck – it’ll wipe out the fleas from your backyard, as well as other pests like mosquitoes and roaches. The active ingredient is 7.9% Bifenthrin, which is a pyrethroid chemical that’s safe for children and pets once dry.
Demon Max Insecticide is also a good option to get rid of fleas in the yard as well as other insects. The active ingredient is 25.3% Cypermethrin, which both kills and repels over 20 kinds of insects.
Before spraying, make sure you keep all pets and children indoors and don’t let them back in the yard until the insecticide is dry. Remove all toys and other items that your pets and children use so they don’t get sprayed.
Also protect yourself before you spray as well by wearing a proper mask, gloves, long shirt and pants, and shoes and socks. Try to spray on a calm, windless day.
Note: Keep in mind that insecticide will quickly kill the adult fleas in the yard, but it won’t target the egg, larval or pupal stages of the flea. So if you just spray once and leave it at that, you’ll see a huge improvement in the flea situation…that is, until the eggs hatch and the pupae mature to create another flea infestation.
So if you use this insecticide by itself, you must spray once a week for at least 4 weeks in order to completely break the cycle.
Mix with an IGR to kill fleas permanently (chemical option)
As we mentioned above, insecticides will kill the fleas in your yard fast, but it does little for the flea eggs, larvae or pupae – which will eventually grow into the jumping, biting adult fleas we all despise.
Well, unless we cut the cycle short with insect growth regulators (IGRs) like pyriproxyfen and methoprene.
These IGRs are a more recent form of pest control that don’t kill adult fleas but effectively break the flea life cycle by inhibiting the growth and maturation of flea larvae.
When used together with an insecticide that kills adult fleas, you get the most comprehensive way to get rid of fleas – permanently and at all stages of development.
When it comes to IGRs for fleas, you have several options that you can use outdoors. The best ones are Precor IGR Insect Growth Regulator, NyGuard IGR Concentrate Insecticide, and Tekko Pro IGR Insect Growth Regulator.
These products are expensive but they are concentrated and worth it, especially if you have a large flea infestation outdoors.
Use a 2-in-1 flea spray
If you have a small yard and don’t want to try your hand at professional-grade pesticides, we totally get it. Mixing pesticides with IGRs can be intimidating.
Plus, it’s not your only option when it comes to killing fleas in the yard.
Black Flag Flea and Tick Killer Concentrate is a flea spray that combines an adulticide, Lambda-Cyhalothtin, to kill adult fleas with an IGR, Pyriproxyfen, to break the flea life cycle.
The bottle doesn’t require any mixing and connect to your garden hose for easy application, making it a very beginner-friendly flea killer for the yard.
How to Prevent Fleas in the Yard
By now, your yard should be a flea-free zone. But what can you do to ensure that it stays that way? Here are your best bets.
Keep out flea-carriers
If your yard is the chosen mingling spot for the neighborhood strays, the fleas will be back in your yard before long. And it’s not just the strays – you’ll want to limit squirrels, deer, rabbits, raccoons, and mice and rats from getting into your yard as well.
Start by patching up any holes in your fences and if you don’t have them already, create some barriers along your property. Also, check under shed and decks and evict any wildlife that have shacked up in your yard.
Lastly, take measures to remove temptations for unwanted visitors. You can significantly reduce your yard’s appeal simply by removing bird feeders, moving uneaten pet food indoors, and keeping garbage sealed.
A no flea barrier around your yard
To close off your yard from fleas for good, create a barrier around the yard by lining the perimeter with cedar mulch granules. It contains red cedar oil which repels fleas, mosquitoes, roaches, flies, gnats, scorpions and venomous snakes from your premises while smelling lovely.
It’s also organic and safe for you, your pets and your kids.
You can also use it around areas where you pet likes to play and around your house to form a barrier against fleas.