As the weather gets colder, you may not be thinking about bugs and rodents. After all, how do pests even make it through the winter in such cold temperatures? One thing is for certain, once springtime hits, they’re back. It’s bad enough to have pests in the yard and garden, let alone having spiders and other bugs inside the house. In this case, a pest control service may be your best option. For your garden, here are three do-it-yourself ideas for keeping pests away.
1. Spice it Up!
Surprisingly, some common spices can be excellent insect deterrents for gardens. Garlic and hot peppers, for instance, create an unappealing flavor for various leaf-munchers. Simply blend up a bulb of garlic with a hot pepper (or sauce) and mix it with about a cup of water. Strain out the chunks and use the liquid in a regular spray bottle to cover the leaves you wish to protect from bugs. Viola!
2. Save the Squash
One of the most frequent (and frustrating) parts of growing squash, grapes, and other similar plants is getting powdery mildew on the leaves. It’s basically a white, sticky fungus that looks nasty and spreads to other leaves and attracts different pests. In short, you don’t want it anywhere near your produce. The easiest recipe to rid your plants of powdery mildew is a mixture of milk and soap. It may sound strange, but it has worked wonders for garden plants. Use ¼ cup of milk and a few drops of dish soap, double or triple the mix if you have many plants affected. Use a spray bottle to douse the plants, but since the product is milk-based, you’ll need to use the whole thing at once so it doesn’t spoil. Just make sure your toddler doesn’t get a hold of your concoction!
3. Use The “Bubbly”
No, not the champagne- save that for your anniversary. Spraying water with a few drops of soap can be used as an effective defense against mites, scales, thrips, and aphids. When you have these pests around, it attracts a host of others, including different species of ants and spiders. When you control certain pests, it creates a cascading effect on the ecosystem and prevents further damage and potential contamination to your veggies.
Maintaining a healthy yard and garden is not only important from an aesthetic point of view, but key to harvesting great vegetables. Enjoy your greens!