Happy Earth Day to all. I thought we could start out today's festivities by offering you some Natural alternatives for keeping critters out of your garden.
Until a few years ago, I kept a vegetable garden every year. I have always been a "natural" gardener, feeling that anything I put on my veggies would find its way into ME. Since I tend to be kind of fond of ME, I chose to use natural solutions to fertilize an deinfest my bounty.
Some of the tips below are supplied by me, while others, you will find a link to their respective sources.
Garlic pesticide spray
Soak 3 to 4 ounces of chopped garlic bulbs in 2 tablespoons of mineral oil for one day. Dissolve 1 tsp of fish emulsion( you can get it at a plant store) in a pint of water and add it to your solution. Stir. Strain liquid and store in a glass container - not metal! Dilute 1 part solution to every 20 parts of water. Kills aphids, mosquitoes, and onion flies.
Garlic pest control and insect repellant
1. If you plant garlic with tomatoes, it will keep away red spider mites.
2. If you plant garlic around fruit trees, it will repel borers.
3. Spray garlic pesticide on sweet potatoes to repel rabbits.
4. Spray ponds with garlic-based oil to kill mosquitoes.
An insect repellent spray made of tomato leaves
Add four or five pints of water and 1 tablespoon of cornstarch to tomato leaves crushed in your vegetable juicer. Strain it. Keep the unused spray refrigerated. Works good on roses too.
Here is the link:
Composting your own garbage is an excellent way to fertilize. I will not beging to explain how, but the below link can get you started:
From Me, from my years of gardening experience:
Plant Garlic, marigolds, mint or onions as borders around your garden to keep out a multitude of pests
Sprinkle chili powder or cayenne in places you wish to deter ants. NOT in the house if you have kiddies or pets.
Keep aphids off your p[lants by spraying them with a mixture of plain old dish soap and water. One good squirt into a spray bottle filled with water should do the trick. SPray once a week or so, more often if it rains,
Repel caterpillars with a water and cayenne mixture: 1tsp cayenne per pint of water
If you lay a border of copper flashing around your garden, you will have little problem with snails and slugs.
If you DO have an existing slug problem, place containers (I use plastic margarine container lids) with beer. If you are now planting, you can take it a step further by "planting" small jars(salsa jars work well) into the soil at intervals around the garden. Leave the opening just above ground level. Add beer to fill about 1/3 full.Â They slither in, but don't slither out. (Hey, maybe that would work for Harry Potter?)
Spray your lawn with beer,YES beer to fertilize. Make sure it is a chemical free beer, such as "Rolling Rock" The yeasts and sugars kill fungi and and act as a fertilizer.
I hope these tips might help you to have a more nutritious, healthy garden. Just remember, if you use them...I live in a loft apartment and have no garden..Send me some when its harvest time! Lets just call it..royalties.
In honor of Earth Day, this article is Recycled from 2006, but YES! it is mine!