One of the biggest problems in the garden at this time of year are pests. These pests can either be insects or mammals. Both of them can decimate a garden and neither one is necessarily better than the other. In light of this problem, I found a great article and post for you by Debra Roby. Here is some of what she had to say:
My approach to pests in the garden or landscape is usually to adopt a technique that is least harmful to the general environment while being highly destructive to the pest itself. So I often use soap, dusts, hot pepper and young men to deal with my pests. Except for muskrats. They actually drove me to buy a .22. But let’s hope your garden invasions don’t end up resorting to that degree of destructive power.
More than likely your invaders this time of year come in one of two varieties: insect or mammal. What can you do to discourage, or eliminate the problem if each case?
In many of the spring/fall vegetables, planting time is the most important factor in preventing damage. If you plant brassicas, broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, spinach, beets and swish chard as soon as the soil can be worked but before the first frost-free day, the plants become established and you can pick a crop before warmer weather brings on insect invasions. So it’s too late for early spring plantings, keep in mind that any open garden space come mid- to late-September might be prime territory for a fall crop of these goodies.
Good commercial organic pest controls include Safer Soap, (dehydrates the dasterdly things) diatomaceous earth, (cuts softs bodied insects to shreds. like mini-glass shards) horticultural oils, (smothers those suckers!) and floating row covers (if the pests can’t get in they can’t eat it). ‘Bacillus thurengiensis’, or Bt and it’s known to gardeners everywhere is a bacteria you can apply as the insect worms are appearing. It is deadly to the invaders, but does not harm humans, birds or other animals. Look for it commercial by name or as Dipel.
To read the rest of what Debra has to say, please click here. Now, while you are reading her advice, I’m off to rid my garden and lawn of some pesky grasshoppers. I’ll tell you more about that later. What pests drive you crazy in the garden?
Photo provided by almogaver