Natural Pest Control

  • Added:
    May 08, 2013
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Mauritian mosquito
Mauritian mosquito
Photo by John Tann

One of the key things to think about in organic gardening is natural pest control. This is particularly important if you're growing fruits and vegetables, although this also applies to any type of garden. Not only does this protect against a reduced harvest, it prevents toxic chemicals from contaminating your stock. There is almost no point inpursuingnatural gardening if you're going to spray everything in chemicals anyway. This article aims to cover the basics about natural pest control to help you get started.

The way to organize natural pest control is to imagine you're building a fence around your crops, your home and other outbuildings. However, instead of having wood to build your fence, you'll be using nature for protection.

To keep pests such as ants, mice and fleas away from your home as well as your garden shed, plant lavender, basil, mint, as well as marigolds and tansy. Tansy has the added advantage of attracting ladybugs - they love to eat aphids and mites. Cucumber peels areparticularlygood to repel ants. If snails are are a problem too, lime, ashes or sand will stop them in their tracks.

Now for the vegetable garden itself. First of all, remember the basics of organic gardening. Keep your garden uncluttered. Use natural, organic composting methods to have a rich, healthy soil and pull out weak plants as that may already be infected. This will solve most problems before they even start. In addition, marigolds are a key tool in your armory for natural pest control. Just plant a row of marigolds for every three vegetable rows. They will fend off all sorts of pests and insects. Planting lavender as a border will also ward off rabbits.

After the harvest, you'll need to protect your pantry. Bay leaves are great to deter roaches, mice and moths. They are also great for stored flour - use one for every 50 pounds. This will work for grains too. If you have a particular problem with roaches, mix powdered sugar with equal parts of baking soda, and spread it around. They'll be gone in a couple of days.

These tips should give you a great start in natural pest control. It's not expensive - in fact you'll save money by not wasting it on expensive chemicals. Give it a try and you'll soon reap the benefits from organic gardening like nature intended.

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