On to Natural Pest Control or Repellents as we can't completely control them, we can at least make it less hospitable for them. We would love to file as an organic farm but we are surrounded by other farms that aren't as forward thinking as we are when it comes to chemicals. So we bill ourselves as natural farmers. My grandparents farmed in the days before monsanto and roundup and did pretty good, so I figure with a bit of luck we can too.
If you're interested in gardening with less chemicals but don't know how to start, here are a few great home remedies and old fashioned ideas that haven't gone out of style.
Plant so that your garden is less pest friendly, For every insecticide you spray you are not only killing off the bad bugs you're killing off the good bugs too! Welcome those beneficial bugs into your garden and repel the ones that cause the harm. Here's a few ideas for companion plantings, bug repellents and repellent for the larger pests too.
- Borage- is a great plant for tomato gardens, it repels hornworms and cabbage worms too. It is one of the herbs I recommended in my H is for Herbs post too. Check it out for other great ideas.
- Catnip is something we will be trying this year, Not to drive the cats crazy but to deter June Bugs, Japanese Beetles for those of you not from the south. This Lemon variety is one we plan on planting, so maybe the cats won't stay drunk. The fig Tree can use all the help it can get
- Marigolds are a definite old wives favorite. My grandmother planted tons of these all around her gardens every year. You want one that has a strong scent for the best outcome. Mexican varieties are even said to repel rabbits! We have dogs and cats and (knock on wood) don't seem to have much of a problem with them, that could be form the shedding fur that we we place around the garden too. That is supposed to ward off deer also.
- Sunflowers, which are so hardy can be used for many different uses. The tall hardy variety can be used as climbing stalks for peas and beans. And ants find them very hospitable, which could pull them from your other plants.
- Plant Basil with Tomatoes to protect them from certain types of flies, protect you from Mosquitoes while you harvest them together for great recipes.
For those other pests, weeds, sprinkle corn meal around your plants that have emerged and are growing well. It will keep other seeds from emerging.
Check out old Almanacs and talk to old farmers about other great ideas. You might learn a thing or two about gardening and other topics too. Then check back in here on Friday to see what Organic really means. Thanks for stopping by!