Pests are uninvited guests to the garden but spraying them furiously is not the right way to remove them. You have to be cautious when selecting a pesticide as most of the pesticides would kill nasty as well as friendly pests. Hence the best way to control pests is to prevent them from establishing and growing in your garden. Spraying insecticide should be the last resort.
The following are some useful and natural ways to prevent pests is your garden.
Keep your garden clean – Always keep your garden free from weeds; they might attract unwanted pests in your garden. Remove debris; it might become safe haven for pests. Do not allow unwanted parts of plants to decay in open. Either remove them or use them to prepare your own compost.
Provide the right spots to the plants – Provide your plants with the best growing conditions. Plants that require sunny conditions should be planted in place where they receive good amount of sunlight for most part of the day. Plants that do not get the right growing conditions are more prone to diseases and pests. Try to grow native plants that are easier to keep healthy and strong; avoid plants that are difficult to grow in your climate unless you can spend time and effort to keep the healthy.
Prepare the ground well – Whether your plants grow in the ground of in containers, provide them with a balanced and well-prepared soil. Whatever is the type of soil your plants prefer, make sure that it contains the right mix and comes from healthy sources. Do not reuse soil that comes from a diseased plant.
Frequently change location – Try to rotate growing spots especially if you grow vegetables or annuals. Growing the same plant is a spot for years raises the chances of insects to invade and establish them slowly.
Keep your plants healthy – Healthy plants are more resistant to pest attacks. Provide your plants with the right amount of water, light and fertilizer. Plants that get scrappy should be removed or at least separated.
Understand and diagnose – Understand growing habits of common pests to prevent them from appearing. For instance, there are some insects that propagated in boggy soil. You can prevent them by keeping the soil from becoming boggy. Pests that grow underneath leaves can be diagnosed by regularly examining your plants. When a branch of leaf is affected, remove it immediately. Spraying insecticide should be the last option. Dispose affected parts off properly.
Attract birds and keep friendly pests – There are a number of garden birds that feed on insects. Place a bird feeder or grow plants that attract birds to garden.
Friendly insects like bees, ground beetle, hover fly and ladybeetles discourage the growth of harmful insects. You can also purchase them to release in your garden.