Natural pest control is a less expensive alternative to pesticides which is safer for your garden, your family and the environment.
We have been spending a lot of money on pesticides, which are infecting our environment. At least, we can do some good on our own level and work towards establishing a system of healthy pest management where we will opt for only beneficial options.
It is reported that each year American homeowners use approximately three times the amount of pesticides as farmers. In fact, most of the surface water is contaminated and the wildlife poisoned by pesticides used by single-family homes!
The easiest way to prevent insect damage in your garden and home is by discouraging them from coming in the first place. Healthy gardens are the best defense against these creatures.
• Pull out any weak plants. Weak plants can attract predators and therefore can mark the beginning of pests population in your garden and later house. It is better to pull out such plants and dispose them off, somewhere away from your garden area.
• Build healthy, organic soil. Natural composting methods, mulching and topdressing your soil with compost or natural fertilizer will help in developing stronger plants.
• Seaweed mulch or spray. Seaweed contains trace elements such as iron, barium, zinc, calcium, magnesium and sulfur, they promote healthy development in plants. Seaweed fertilizer in the mulch or spray form will strengthen a plant and help in withstanding diseases. Seaweed mulch also repels slugs.
• Minimize insect habitat. Clear garden area of debris and weeds which are breeding places for insects.
• Interplant and rotate crops. Insect pests are often drawn to certain plants. By mixing plantings, pests are less likely to spread throughout a plant. Rotating crops each year are a common method to avoid re-infestation.
• Keep foliage dry. Water early so foliage will be dry for most of the day. Wet foliage encourages insects and fungal damage to your plants.
• Disinfect. The speed of invading insects can be reduced by cleaning your tools after working with infested plants and then moving on to other garden areas.
• Watering it right. The way you water your garden is of great importance in maintaining healthy plants. It is essential to water them in such a way that it goes deep enough to their roots. And you don’t have to water your plants every day, unless they are tiny seedlings which require water to grow into plants. Shallow watering causes the roots to turn upwards to get to the water. So, with deep watering and mulching you should at most only water every third day.
Make Sure Not To Kill Beneficial Insects:
Beneficial insects are insects those you can attract to your garden, or buy. These insects prey on harmful insects and their larvae. These species can be helpful for specific problems.
Brachonids, Chalcids and Ichneumon Wasps
These small insects destroy leaf-eating caterpillars. Planting the members of Umbelliferae family, for example; carrots, parsley, celery, Queen Anne’s lace and others, can help you in attracting these insects to your garden.These are easy to grow plants, and you should leave some of them to flower. As it is the flower that attracts these insects.
These common insects consume mites, aphids, scale and whiteflies. You can attract them to your garden by planting members of the daisy family, yarrow or tansy.
Lacewings are avid consumers of some insects, especially aphids. They are attracted to flowers, such as goldenrod, yarrow, asters and black-eyed susan's.
Hover-flies are also known as consumers of aphids. Like the Lacewings, they are also attracted to "composite" flowers, such as goldenrod, yarrow etc. You can easily avail the seeds of these flowers from garden centers.
These large insects have an appetite for most garden pests. Their eggs are placed in the garden where they hatch and quickly grow into adult size. Eggs are available through online catalogues and mail order.
Effective against cutworms, a common pest which destroys sprouts before they can grow into seedlings. They are also a danger to root weevil larvae and beetles.
Some tips for Critter-Free homes
Block Flies with Basil
Flies hate the smell of basil. Placing the pots of basil at windowsills, doorways and on the kitchen counter can help in discouraging flies from entering your house. Dried basil can also be used by putting it in a small muslin pouch and rubbing this occasionally, giving off a strong scent of basil.
Scare Off Spiders with Citrus
Spiders are not fond of citrus. In a spray bottle, mix lemon or lime juice with water. Spray down windowsills and doorways, and wipe your counters with this mixture. You can protect your garden from spiders by spreading around peels of orange, lemon or lime.
Combat Mosquitos with Catnip
According to Science Daily, catnip repels mosquitoes effectively. Grow it in your garden or apply undiluted catnip oil to the skin for up to two hours of protection
Good-bye To Slugs, With Eggshells
Get rid of slugs and snails by spreading crushed eggshells where they are used to travel. They will not prefer travelling on the rough surface and if they dared to do so, then it may cost their lives.
A Little Plant Can Do Alot
Remember that many pests really don't like certain plants such as garlic, mint and marigolds. Mingle some of these with other plants or flowers to ward off unwanted insects.
Fumes And Smells For A Garden
Garlic, tobacco, rhubarb, fish and other strong smelling substances that are used to repel pests. You can place them in your garden to scare away these creepy crawlers. While fumes of chilies or salt may burn harm or kill pests.
See What A Spray Can Do
You can spray your own made Red Pepper Spray on the plants you want to protect. Other favorable sprays can be of natural vegetable based soaps or detergents, which are harmful to many insects. Spraying once a week will be beneficial.
Last But Not The Least
Barriers such as plant collars, netting, surface materials or traps, are often very good garden pest deterrents or removal methods.
Let it be the time you choose healthier options for your safety and health. Be wise, don’t forget your responsibility towards your environment and at the same time, live a nuisance free life.
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