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Organic pest control that works.

Hesitantly, i typed each of the title words with fear of backlash in regards to the effectiveness of my next few paragraphs.

Yes, organic pest controls that work. No, I'm not crazy. Yes, I've tried them and stand behind every word that follows. The key to great organic pest control is regular application. Pest control, is exactly that. The act of continuously limiting the nuisance of a pest.

Many are responsive to pest invasion rather than preventative. Once a pest is seen chances are it isn't day one of them inhabiting your plant or garden. They've probably been around wandering beneath the radar living in the accidental well furnished bungalow you've built for them. Only now have they've gotten a little greedy and you notice severe damage. Leaves adorned with holes, brown and black spots, others wilted and dying. Looks pretty bad i know but, it's not over in most cases.

Luckily, there's a few solutions to both problems and today we'll take a brief look at prevention and reaction aid for your plant babies. It's important to understand the levels of plant protection and where pests are attacking your plant. Soil, foliage, stem and roots are all areas of vulnerberity. Based on the location of the attack, is where we will begin elimination.

Your plants are resilient. The first line of defense is actually themselves, however the fight is long and even they become weary. Let's get some back up for the little guys. Companion planting is one of the most natural defenses you can provide your plants. In fact, it is the addition of other secondary beneficial plants used around your primary plants creating a natural fortress. For example basil and mint are pollen attractors as well as insect repellents. When planted near bell pepper plants the bees will keep the flowers busy eliminating pests roaming areas during the day on the plant while the basil and mint ground cover make a moat that makes it almost impossible to reach the castle that is our bell pepper plant. The best thing about companion plants is that you can eat them also!

After taking care of the first wave of attack you're all set to add your next level of protection. This tip is more of a decoy than a defense. Let's talk about the addition of a "banking" plant. These plants are just that, a safety net. You're hoping these plants will take the hit for your investment. For example, you've just planted several beautiful tomato plants. You notice a few holes along the leaves, it's hornworms but not to fear. We've noticed early and have exterminated our pests using our trusty neem oil spray and our focus is prevention. A trip to our local nursery or big box store to the fresh herb section is all we need. We aren't here for basil, mint or even parsely. I could give several more guesses but I'd still feel confident it wouldn't be a top 5 herb choice but we're here for DILL! Yup, fresh dill will attract hornworms giving them a desirable breeding destination that does not include your tomatoes. Simply plant the dill in bunches away from your primary plants and monitor it's effectiveness.

Dooms Day! This how we refer to all acts further discussed. You've tried to leave the ecosystem intact but there just isn't enough garden for the few of you and one has to go. Direct sprays are the most effective form of pest control but often disrupt the natural balance of our ecosystem. Also, there are very few truly organic options available. While neem oil is most popular it's not always the most effective, luckily there is a cheap alternative. Insecticidal soaps work great at eliminating pests by coating them and the plant leaves in filmy solutions. Some homemade versions call for dish soap and vegetable oil and while these work, vegetable oil versions must be applied at night or risk burning foliage. Here's a trick! Neem oil is pretty solid to start and its good for the plants foliage, it just lacks umph! In a 32oz bottle, increase the film consistency by adding 1 to 2 drops of dish soap. This in conjunction with the existing neem oil will provide a longer lasting film coat. Secondly, add 2 or 3 drops of mint essential oil or if in a rush some Castile mint soap works just fine! Pest hate mint, the strong aroma will assist in warning pests from a far.

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