Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Natural Garden Pest Control

Natural garden pest control comes with a wide range of benefits and there are so many reasons why you should try it. Besides being an inexpensive way of keeping pests out of your farm, it is much safer to the environment, your garden, you and your family. And besides, some of the natural methods used to control pests are even much more effective than applying pesticides not to mention the serious risks that these pesticides have on your health and the environment at large.

Natural prevention measures- organic gardening
Perhaps the easiest ways of ensuring that your garden is not invaded by pests is to discourage these pests from coming into your garden in the first place. As every pest control expert will tell you, a healthy garden has the best defense against pests. To achieve this, start by pulling out those weak plants because chances are high they might already be attacked by pests or attached by other diseases. Focus more on building healthy soil organically by use of natural composting methods such as top- dressing the soil with natural fertilizer and compost and mulching. Other preventive measures include disinfecting your tools before attending to your garden, keeping foliage dry, minimize pest habitat and rotate and interplant crops in your garden.

Organic gardening is ideally done at the backyard with an understanding that healthy and happy plants in good and highly nutritious soil helps a lot in prevention of harmful insects and most diseases. While organic gardening doesn't necessarily eliminate all pests in the garden as most pesticides do, it is always very important that the garden is kept watered, mulched, and clean of debris and weeded in order to prevent many pest related problems.

Introduce beneficial insects
There are some beneficial insects, which prey on pests and they can save you from having to use pesticides in your garden. While you can attract these insects naturally in your garden, some are also available for purchase from catalogues and play on harmful pests, insects and their larvae. Some of these very beneficial insects include ladybugs, brachnoids and Ichneumon wasps, Lacewings, Hover- flies, praying mantis and nematodes among others. 

Garden ‘mini- in sectary'’ is something else that you should consider also. This refers to the setting up of a small piece of your garden and designing it in a way that it is capable of attracting and harboring beneficial insects. Such ‘good’ insects prey on a wide range garden insect pest thus providing the gardener with a natural, safer alternative to pesticides.

Homemade and non- toxic remedies
Besides being inexpensive, homemade remedies for pest control are preferred by many since you will know exactly what you are putting to your garden. These homemade sprays are quite effective and offer very good results when are used for controlling harmful insects. These remedies are made with natural ingredients and these means that they are non- toxic such as cayenne, garlic, horsetail or stinging nettles. You simply dilute these waters and spray them on your pests which kill the pesticides. It is essential that you spray the plants very well including below the leaves since this is where most of the pests hide.

Common pests and how to control them naturally
Tomato hornworm: This is essentially the scariest and most destructive pest in a garden. While the pests aren't dangerous to human beings as such, they pose a great threat to potato plants. This is because of the fact that they feed heavily and are capable of eating a significant amount of leaves from the potatoes. Roto-tiling and moving the tomato regularly is an effective way to manage these pests naturally. These pests can also be eliminated effectively by looking for them and actually picking them off. If you don’t have the time to do this, there are many organic products that you can by and spray off your plants and this will really work.

Cabbage worm: These kinds of worm alongside its counterpart parsley worms can serious damage leafy green plants if left uncontrolled. You can literary pick them off from your plants and this will keep them under absolute control. You will need to be very alert and keep checking for any signs of plant damage by the cabbage worms throughout the season. Alternatively, you can use organic products to spray your plants underneath the leaves and you will succeed in killing the worms together with their larvae.

Slugs and snails: while these pests are actually not bugs as such, they can cause a great havoc in your garden. This is because they determinedly feast on the stem and leaves of your plants and will particularly attack on your leafy garden vegetables. The best natural prevention for snails and slugs is use of baits which you can buy from your local garden center. However, you will need to follow strictly the directions given. These boxes usually contain Metaldehyde, which slowly kill the snails as they die. Be careful not to use these formulations around pets or birds as they can be dangerous when they eat them. A good way to control snails and slugs is creating barriers to ensure that the pests are not able to cross over to your crops. You can use materials such as wood ashes and crushed egg shells which are easily available at home and are easy to use with and cheap. Eliminating the snails physically will also work as well.

There are many other pests that can cause a great disaster in your garden such as whiteflies and aphids, Mexican bean beetle, squash vine borer, honey bees and bumble bees and ladybugs or lady beetles among others. For the larger pests, setting up traps and barriers is also a great option that you can consider. The truth of the matter is that there are so many natural garden pest control methods available at your disposal and you really have no excuse of using pesticides whatsoever. Natural pest control is easy, effective and most importantly, it is cheap.

No comments:

Post a Comment