As summer progresses our gardens mature, weeds grow and bugs breed. If you’ve been keeping a clean, healthy garden free of pesticides etc. you should have a healthy balance of bugs verses natural predator and things will pretty much take care of themselves. Sometimes though in spite of our hard work and best intentions pests can get carried away and become a problem.
I still stand by the no pesticide rule in my garden. There are other ways to deal with these critters that work very well and help to keep the natural balance within your garden. A well balanced garden will be home to many helpful critters who feed on those insects which give our flowers grief. I’ve gathered up a few tips to keep in mind when dealing with garden pests organically.
TIPS FOR ORGANIC PEST CONTROL:
Keep a Healthy Garden
This means keeping your soil healthy by enriching it with your own home made organic composts. Use manures to fertilize or organic fertilizers only. It’s important not to upset the natural PH balance of your soil with chemical additives.
A Clean Garden means Healthy Plants
Healthy plants resist garden pests better than sickly plants so keep your garden clean. Remove dead or diseased growth on a regular basis and dispose of in the the trash, not your compost pile.
Water your garden less not more. Plants are healthier left slightly on the dry side as they will develop stronger root systems and also a tougher outer layer which is less desirable to bothersome insects.
Only Plant Hardy Plants
Only plant tough plants for your area. There are numerous cultivars to choose from these days and some are simply more resistant to diseases and pests than others. Often new hybrids have lost some of their natural abilities to ward off diseases. Should a plant proves to be susceptible to problems in your garden get rid of it, and plant one that suits your garden conditions better.
Use Organic Solutions to deal with Pests
Soap spray works well, as does garlic or herbal tea sprays for organic pest control.
Soap Spray: 3 TBL of Ivory Snow laundry soap to 1 gallon of water. Mix and apply with a hand sprayer.
Herbal Spray: Place garlic or other herb in a jar of boiling water and let steep as in making a tea. Add 1 tsp of liquid dish soap and spray with a hand sprayer.
Remove infected stems from the plants and dispose of in the trash as soon as you notice a problem. Often this is all that is required. You can also simply pick the pests off the plants and dispose of them or in the case of aphids you can squish them. Sounds a bit gross but really not all that bad.
And remember, for every bad bug in the garden there are several good bugs just waiting around to take care of the problem for you if you give them a chance.
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(some photos from pixabay) (some links go to my affiliate Amazon account)