Susan Goldfarb of Albany, N.Y. spent last summer avoiding her backyard. "Our mosquito problems were just above and beyond," she says. "No matter what we did, from sprays to candles to bug zappers, we just couldn't get them to stop breeding in our yard all summer long." Goldfarb spent the winter reading up on ways to keep spring and summer rains from puddling in her yard. That way, by spring she was able to begin construction on a major home improvement: a drainage system.