There is no way to guarantee pests will not enter your garden from time to time. However, there are a number of low-cost ways that take just a little effort to decrease the pest population in your garden. Most of these techniques involve not allowing for conditions that will attract pests to your garden in the first place.
Give Plants Plenty Of Space
Most amateur gardeners have been guilty of trying to squeeze too many plants in an area that is a little too small for them. This temporary sense of abundance can cause you trouble over time. Your plants need enough space so they can enjoy the air that comes from a breeze. Overly populated gardens will also attract insects that are in search of shade and protection from predators. Once inside your garden, these pests will raise families and eat their way through the vegetation. If it is necessary for you to plant closely, you will have to be extra diligent about watching for pest activity.
Watering your plants in the morning will help prevent pests in two ways. First, your plants will be properly hydrated by the time the hottest part of the day approaches. This will prevent the plant from wilting or turning colors. Insects like to prey on plants which are distressed and will sometimes search elsewhere if your plants are green and healthy.
The second pest control benefit of morning watering is it provides time for leaves to dry before the evening hours. When leaves are damp they will attract pests like snails, slugs, and earwigs.
Make Your Garden Attractive To Birds, Frogs And Toads
Toads and frogs top the list of animals who like to eat insects. You should make your garden inviting to these allies. This can be done with a simple action like placing a bowl of water in or near your garden. You can also place a toad house in your garden and wait for an occupant. Often times, toads will dig themselves a spot in the soil and wait there for unsuspecting insects to approach.
Birds can be a bit of a nuisance themselves by eating at fruit in your garden but will help by eating more than their fair share of insects. They are especially helpful at rooting out odorous ants. In most cases, it will not take much to attract birds to your garden. You may need to add a birdhouse or other shelter because birds like to feed when they have protection from predators.
Attract Beneficial Insects
Not all insects will eat the plants in your garden. Some of them will choose instead to dine on the plant-eating insects. The ladybug nymph, for example, is a virtual vacuum cleaner when it comes to clearing your yard of insects. It is not difficult to attract helpful insects but it will take a little effort to keep them in your garden after they have eaten the insects that are present. Planting flowers that produce the pollen and nectar they enjoy may keep them around to eliminate the next batch of insects that enter your garden.
Harvest When Crops Are Ready
It is not uncommon to fall a little behind on your harvests every now and then. However, when fruit begins to fall from trees onto the ground, this is a great attraction for insects. Fruit that is overripe but still clinging to its position on a plant will cause the plant to weaken and become a target for insects. Be sure to clean any fallen fruit from the ground. And if you are late on a harvest, pick fruits immediately and give the plant extra water to increase recovery time.
It is no big deal for insects to nibble at a plant or two in your garden from time to time. However, insects can wreck your garden if left unchecked for some time. The five tips above will rid your garden of pests quickly and help you enjoy the healthy garden you desire.
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Paisley Hansen is a freelance writer and expert in health, fitness, and growing young. When she isn’t writing she can usually be found reading a good book or hitting the gym. She loves hearing from readers so feel free to contact her through Facebook.
Founder Ray Spotts has a passion for all things natural and has made a life study of nature as it relates to health and well-being. Ray became a forerunner bringing products to market that are extraordinarily effective and free from potentially harmful chemicals and additives. For this reason Ray formed Trusted Health Products, a company you can trust for clean, effective, and healthy products. Ray is an organic gardener, likes fishing, hiking, and teaching and mentoring people to start new businesses. You can get his book for free, “How To Succeed In Business Based On God’s Word,” at www.rayspotts.com.