Organic Pest Control: 6 Steps to Keep Your Garden Safe

Organic pest management is a great way to keep your garden safe from pests without the use of dangerous chemicals. It can include the use of pheromone traps, the release of beneficial insects, the use of trap crops, and other organically approved techniques. Espinosad is a form of bacteria that naturally kills insects in your garden without risking spreading to other nearby wild animals. Spray it directly onto the plants and watch insect populations decrease.

Home pest inspection companies can apply it for you and advise you on how to spray spinosad on edible plants to prevent diseases.Nothing stops insects like a physical barrier, and one of the best for vegetable crops is the floating cover in rows. This lightweight nonwoven fabric lets in light, air and water, but prevents insects from feeding and laying eggs. Row covers work great on vegetables, broccoli, root vegetables and any crop that doesn't need bee pollination. They will also protect seedlings from cold temperatures of up to 28°F or lower, depending on the thickness of the fabric.Speaking of barriers, an electric fence is one of the only safe ways to keep Bambi, Rocky Raccoon and other animals away from your prized edible plot.

While repellent sprays may work for a while, animals are smart enough to get used to the spray and get inside anyway. If deer pressure is low, use a single strand of electrical fence wire 30 inches above the ground. In regions with large populations of hungry deer, use several strings, spaced a few feet apart.The key is to place the fence early in the season, before the animals find their orchard or fruit trees. You can teach animals to avoid the fence by baiting them with peanut butter.

After a few harmless blows, they'll likely avoid the area completely.Unlike its heavier and more toxic cousin, latent oil, horticultural oil is a lightweight oil based on petroleum or vegetables that coats insect eggs, larvae and adults and suffocates them without damaging the foliage. Use oil in the vegetable garden to kill aphids, leafhoppers, mites and whiteflies. A few drops of oil on the tips of developing sweet corn cobs will control the corn worm. Oils pose little risk to both gardeners and desirable species and integrate well with natural biological controls.

They also quickly dissipate by evaporation, leaving little residue.However, oils can harm plants if they are applied in excessive amounts, on sensitive plants, or on particularly hot (above 100°F) or cold (below 40°F) days. Sometimes you just have to get down to business with the pests. Nets or row covers on cabbage will prevent moths from laying eggs on them, making them a good organic method of pest control. Crushed eggshells can be placed around the base of plants to keep slugs away.

Metal cans (with both ends cut off) can be placed over the tender seedlings and pushed them a little into the soil to keep cutworms at bay.There are several organic pest control techniques you can use to keep your plants safe and at bay from pests. Around 1,300 gardeners from across North America responded, providing new, region-specific information on orchard pest control. The pests are listed from the most to the least problematic, and the highlighted squares indicate the two worst plagues in the region.Fortunately, there are ways to control pests without the use of dangerous chemicals such as pesticides. Relying on larger predators such as chickens, garter snakes and ducks seems to be the most reliable way to achieve long-term control of garden slug pests in orchards as well as various types of beetles, cutworms and many other pests.

Likewise, flea beetles don't make the list of worst pests because most gardeners get good control by covering rows and growing susceptible vegetables in fall instead of spring.If you use an all-inclusive commercial pest control powder you'll kill all bugs and beneficial insects in your garden which you don't want to do. The best control methods include generously spacing plants so that soil dries quickly and removing mulch where these pests like to hide.Numerous respondents said that chickens ended their problems with Japanese beetles while guinea fowls and ducks were also recommended for pest control in orchards by eliminating larvae and adults of Japanese beetles from areas. It can also kill beneficial insects such as bees and ladybugs so be sure to work with pest control companies before applying diatomaceous earth (DE). In fact DE is more of a mechanical control than a chemical control since its mode of operation consists of cutting open insect bodies causing death by dehydration.Of these six critical steps it is key to decide on a control method (appropriate management technique) to minimize pest disturbance which will be discussed in detail throughout this column.

Incorporating natural pest control measures into your cultivation plan is a good start but there are several artificial options available to grower to keep pests at bay.

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