A Few Tips On Your Spring Planting

Advice on Pest Control

Here’s a better way to prevent insect invasion than choking your herbs with chemical sprays.

  • Create a balanced, organic soil environment. Use organic compost and amendments.

  • Adjust the soil pH to 7.0.

  • Companion plant to reduce infestation. Plant chives or silvery herbs like silver king artemisia to reduce aphids.

  • Vary the color, size, texture, and scent of plants to confuse insects.

  • Rotate crops, amending the soil biannually, to reduce fungal and viral disease prone to one crop. Amend the soil to introduce microorganisms which will reduce nematode and fungal growth.

  • Use plant traps, colors, and pheromones to lure insects away from your garden. Marigolds will lure spider mites away and yellow or sticky paper will attract whiteflies and catch them.

  • Remove dead or diseased debris and weeds to prevent insects such as grasshoppers from hatching or over wintering in their protection.

  • Row covers and netting deter chewing insects. They are available at feed stores and nurseries.

  • Use biological insect control. Release ladybugs at night to reduce aphids. Dig earthworms into the soil to enhance aeration and reduce fungal disease. Use lizards and frogs to reduce the insect population.

  • Spray with soapy water and plant-derived insecticides only when necessary and after using biologicals, companion planting, and common sense.