Bugs don’t normally bug me when they are outside. But when they eat my plants I am not happy. They are pests. Now as you may know I prefer to garden organically. So how do you control pests in the organic garden? Why with remedies from the kitchen of course.
- Spray with Soapy Water with a few drops of hot sauce – you can use a safe soap like a castile soap or even Ivory Dish Detergent.
- Beer – after you take a sip of that beer, pour some in a shallow dish to combat snails and slugs.
- Salt – Sprinkle salt on slugs and pour down ant hills, you can also use salt mixed with water to spray on weeds to kill them
- Potatoes – this tip comes to me via HGTV Bury some in the soil. The potatoes lure all the bad bugs that typically eat root crops. Once all the bad bugs are in one spot remove potatoes and mash tem. Just take a potato and slice it into smaller sections. Poke a skewer through each section. Bury the potatoes a couple of inches in the soil. Space each slice about a foot or so apart in your root crops. The skewers stick up through the soil to help you find the potatoes later. In a couple of weeks, pull the potatoes up to reveal all kinds of bad bugs that would otherwise be eating your crops. Remove the bugs from the potatoes and squash the little culprits.
- Use Diluted Vinegar – for acid loving plants
- Remove them by hand – This is a time tested method for bigger pests like Japanese Beetles. When I was a kid we would remove them to a mason jar filled with water and a little alcohol. We thought it was great fun and I don’t think we were even paid.
- Chili Powder – this can be sprinkled around the garden, or added to a soapy water solution to spray on the plants. You might not want to use it the day you harvest the vegetables.
- Garlic Oil Spray – this is a great one to try. Just put three to four cloves of minced garlic into two teaspoons of mineral oil. Let the mixture sit overnight, and then strain the garlic out of the oil. Add the oil to one pint of water, and add a teaspoon of biodegradable dish soap. Store in a bottle or jar, and dilute the mixture when you use it by adding two tablespoons of your garlic oil mixture to one pint of water. This mixture works because the compounds in garlic are irritating or deadly to many insects. The oil and soap help the mixture stick to plant leaves. What insects does garlic oil repel? Planet Discovery cautions you to not apply this spray on a sunny day, because the oils can cause foliage to burn.
What are some of your favorite natural pest control methods in the garden?