Eco-Friendly Pest Control for a Sustainable Philadelphia

At PCT, we’re passionate about providing humane and eco-friendly pest control solutions. The Philadelphia Office of Sustainability believes that through education, we can make a difference in the environment of our beautiful city, and we agree with them. The first step to environmental consciousness is education, so we’ve created this guide to eco-friendly pest control and why it’s so important.

Is There Such a Thing as Eco-Friendly Pest Control?

You may not associate pest control with the word “eco-friendly.” Eco-friendly pest control not only exists; it plays a vital role in protecting local animals, plants, and people while still effectively removing a pest problem. An environmentally responsible pest control company—like our team at PCT—will ensure that pest control strategies do minimal to no damage to the surrounding environment and protect the local wildlife. 

Eco-friendly pest control refers to: 

  • The impact on the surrounding environment 
  • The humanity of the treatment, avoiding unnecessary suffering
  • Public safety from harmful, dangerous pests such as mosquitoes and roaches
  • The sustainability of the treatment
  • Catch-and-release or relocation strategies for creatures that benefit the environment such as honey bees and wildlife

Why Is Eco-Friendly Pest Control Important?

Pest control often works with poisons, chemicals, and traps—determining the eco-friendliness of these strategies ensures we are not causing short- or long-term harm to the environment. General extermination techniques run the risk of harming local wildlife or plants that weren’t the original target of the treatment. 

A pest control company that’s dedicated to eco-friendly solutions isn’t going to jump to pesticides first. They will look for the source problem to provide chemical-free solutions and prevention methods first before deciding if pesticides are needed 

PCT’s Environmentally Conscious Approach to Pest Control

When it comes to protecting the environment while providing pest control solutions to clients, you won’t find a company more passionate than our team at PCT. In everything we do and offer, we try to leave a positive impact on the environment. Our approach is unique in a few ways: 

  • We’re fully licensed: In our wildlife removal services—licensed by the Pennsylvania Game Commission—we make every effort to not harm the animal. 
  • We catch and release: From raccoons to birds and even snakes, we use catch-and-release methods to bring the animal back to its natural habitat. 
  • We trap humanely: When traps and baits are deemed necessary, we use humane methods to minimize suffering and ensure they do not harm anything outside the targeted pest. 
  • We investigate thoroughly: We find the source of the problem rather than just offering a bandaid solution. Do you keep finding rats and mice in your home? We’ll find where they’re entering and seal the entry point—no pesticides required. 
  • We train regularly: We provide regular training to our team on how to protect the environment in their day-to-day work. 
  • We develop custom low-impact treatments: We’ve worked with chemical and pesticide companies to create solutions that target dangerous pests without harming helpful insects or other wildlife. 
  • We strive to become more sustainable: We improve our commitment to eco-friendly pest control by researching the latest solutions. For example, we found a pesticide that only targets mosquitoes and is completely harmless to honey bees.

Our work has been recognized by the United States Environmental Protection Agency for our limited use of pesticides and our work with chemical companies to find more eco-friendly solutions. 

What Pesticides Are Considered to Be Environmentally Friendly?

Infographic of eco-friendly pesticides which name the following 5 options: neem oil, essential oils, diatomaceous earth, microbial insecticides, and insecticidal soaps

There are several environmentally friendly options available for pesticides. Some will naturally deter unwanted pests while others target common pests without harming local flora and fauna. We’ll cover just a few of the options available to you—some of these you may want to invest in to help keep pests at bay in between your regular treatments.  

Neem Oil

Neem oil is a popular choice to keep pests from feeding on plants. When sprayed on infested plants, the oil will kill the pests that ingest it and may even help deter mildew and fungus. What makes neem oil a great choice for eco-friendly pest control is that it is non-toxic to mammals and birds and doesn’t affect pollinators like honey bees or butterflies. Neem oil only works when pests ingest it, so only spray it on plants you know are affected. 

Essential Oils 

Some essential oils, such as peppermint oil, thyme oil, and rosemary oil, act as a natural pest deterrent for some pests. Common pests, especially spiders, mosquitoes, ants, and even rodents, dislike the strong smell of the oils and will avoid areas with their scent. While these are a natural way to repel insects, it is important to keep in mind that thyme oil can kill spiders—a beneficial pest to the environment—and both rosemary and peppermint oil can be harmful to your pets. 

Diatomaceous Earth

Diatomaceous earth is a great way to get rid of pests without harming the environment, animals, or people. Diatomaceous earth is a fine powder that consists of fossilized phytoplankton. While it feels smooth to the human touch, the tough texture wears down the exoskeleton of an insect and kills them—while being completely harmless to humans and wildlife. The only concern with diatomaceous earth is that it also harms useful insects like bees and spiders. To minimize this risk, make sure the diatomaceous earth is buried just below the surface so a bee doesn’t get it on them while pollinating your garden. 

Microbial Insecticides

Microbial insecticides are an increasingly popular choice for gardeners and farmers alike. Rather than using poisons or chemicals that may harm a range of creatures, microbial insecticides target one specific pest without harming anything else. This solution uses bacteria or pathogens that harm pests alone and are safe for plants, animals, and humans.

Insecticidal Soaps

Insecticidal soaps are a method used by home planters and gardeners to protect their plants from pests. Soaps are biodegradable and are made of salts and fatty acids which can kill pests on contact, especially those in younger stages that may not have a fully formed exoskeleton. While this is something you can buy, you can also make it using a small amount of soap mixed with some water. The only downside to this method is that it can also be toxic to your plants, so do some research on what soap you use.

Eco-Friendly Pest Control for Your Philadelphia Home

While it may not be the first thing you think of, eco-friendly pest control is what makes the difference in the treatment of your home. With PCT, you can feel confident that your home is protected from pest intruders with friendly solutions for your family and pets. We don’t just come into a house or business ready to spray pesticides and call it a day—we want to truly understand where the problem is stemming from so we can provide treatment and solutions at the source. The next time you have a pest control problem in your home, consider helping the environment by calling the experts at PCT. 

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