No garden can ever be completely free from pests. Garden pests like aphids, Japanese beetles, spider mites, caterpillars, cutworms can be a challenge in any garden. After years and years of experimenting, there have been a few ways discovered to keep garden pests away that don’t involve harmful chemicals. Some methods involve creating blocks that don’t let pests reach the plant, others involve setting their natural enemies to fight for your pests, and some include DIY recipes that are easy to make.
5 Ways to Control Garden Pest
One of these below-mentioned pest control methods is bound to work for your garden. Depending on what you are growing and the size of the plant, you can choose your preferred method. You can also use fo combination of these methods if the pest problem is out of hand.
1. Cutworm Collars
Cutworms are pests that crawl out in the night to visit your plants and chew through their stems at ground level. They are commonly found in young transplants of cauliflower, broccoli, and their relatives. Making collars that are 3-4 inches and placing it around each transplant and pushing it an inch deep into the soil will keep cutworms away from the plant stems.
How to make cutworm collars?
- You can make a collar out of large index cards. Make sure the diameter is 2-3 inches
- Use a can opener to remove the top and bottom of a tuna can or any other small can. You could also use soda cans by cutting a few inches off the top. This makes a sturdy cutworm collar
- Fold aluminum foil into a 4-inch-wide strip and fold it into a circle
- Cut the bottom off paper or plastic disposable cups
- You can also cut newspapers into 4-inch strips and place them around the stems. In time the plant grows and the newspaper disintegrates and nourishes the plants
Paper cutworm collars are likely to move out of place and breakdown after sometime. Tin cutworm collars are the best.
2. Sticky Traps
Sticky traps are used to attract small insects like aphids, whiteflies, leaf miners, leafhoppers etc. The color is the key for the effectiveness of a sticky trap. The traps are placed in the garden, close to the plant that is being affected. The bugs are attracted by the color and get stuck to the adhesive on the trap.
How to make a sticky trap?
- Find a material that is the right color. You can use colors like yellow, red, light blue or white. Each color attracts a different type of bug. Yellow attracts aphids, leaf miners, apple maggot flies, leafhoppers, and whiteflies as well. You can use paper, plastic, paint, or card stock, as long as the color is bright and the material is sturdy
- Place a thin sheet of plastic wrap over the material. This makes sure you can re-use the base
- Cover the wrap in an adhesive and leave the trap in the garden
- Once the flies and bugs stick to it, remove the wrap and discard it. Repeat the process
3. Parasite Nematodes
Parasite Nematodes are small microscopic organisms that destroy pests that live underground. Beneficial nematodes move through the soil and enter the body cavities of their targeted garden pests and release bacteria that kill the pest. Beneficial nematodes are completely safe for people, pets, the environment and other beneficial insects as well. You can buy beneficial nematodes from the Walmart or The Home Depot nearby.
Beneficial nematodes can eliminate more than 230 different kinds of soil dwelling and wood boring insects. They include Japanese beetles, wireworms, cutworms, white grubs, weevils, fungus gnat larvae, flea larvae and subterranean termites.
4. DIY-all Purpose Spray
This DIY all-purpose spray is a combination of different effective home remedies from the kitchen that have properties to keep pests at bay. This spray contains a mix of onion, garlic, hot pepper, and castile soap.
The ingredients can cause irritation to the skin and eyes. While preparing and spraying the mix, make sure to wear gloves and keep the mixture away from your face.
1 small onion
1 garlic bulb
1 teaspoon of cayenne pepper (powder)
1 tablespoon of liquid castile soap
1 quart of water
How to make it?
- Grind the onion and garlic together
- Add the cayenne pepper and mix the solution with water
- Leave it for an hour then strain through cheesecloth, add the castile soap and mix well
Spray the liquid on the leaves of the plants that are infested with bugs only. Use sparingly as this solution is slightly strong. You can store it in the fridge for up to a week.
This method is usually used to safeguard berries and fruits from pesky animals and birds. Thin net can be spread over the plants to prevent animals and birds from nibbling at them. You can use lightweight bird netting that’s available in stores. This way you have healthy whole fruit without the risk of harmful chemicals.
Pest Control for Your Home
Always resort to natural remedies to control pest in your garden. If you have tried all the possible methods to keep pest out of your garden and still have pests haunting it, you might have to resort to chemicals. However, using chemicals in your garden requires knowledge of ecology. Using insecticides and pesticides in your garden, if not done right, is harmful to the soil, the fruits and vegetables growing and it can also kill useful bugs that help with pollination. This could affect your garden adversely and prevent the plants from producing fruit. If you have pets and children, it can also cause harm to them. If the spraying of chemical insecticides and pesticides goes wrong or is in excess, it could cause a toll on your family’s health and your garden’s health. Why expose your family’s health to the dangers of insecticides. Call a professional and make sure the entire process is smooth and safe. Get a free quote from a top pest control service in the nation today and keep your garden pest-free.