Here’s one surefire way to tell it’s fall when you step outside—the bees and yellow jackets are everywhere (especially at the cider mill). So how can you enjoy the last outings of the season with all the buzzin’ going on? Here are a few ideas that just might curb the little buggers’ enthusiasm:

  • Lay plates of freshly sliced cucumber several feet away from where people will be eating. Bothersome bugs will be attracted to the cukes, and leave you (and your food) alone.
  • Tie a fabric softener sheet to a belt loop or to the back of your ball cap. Bees and yellow jackets can’t stand the smell of the stuff.
  • Make a trap out of an empty 2-liter bottle. Cut a banana peel into strips and put them into the bottle, along with 1 cup of sugar and 1 cup of vinegar. Pour water into the bottle until it’s about 3/4 full. Set or hang the open bottle near where you’ve seen lots of stinging insects. They’ll be attracted to the bottle’s sweet contents, but when they fly into the bottle, they’ll get stuck in the sticky mix and won’t be able to get out.