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Organic Pest and Weed Control

Since organic gardening, by definition, means avoiding harsh chemicals to control pests, weeds and diseases in your garden, care is needed when picking products for these uses. While hand weeding and picking of insect pests, along with fences and barriers against larger pests, are the traditional method used by organic gardeners, there are times when other methods make good sense. Interior Gardens has found the products you need to make your disease, weed, and pest control easier.

Pest Control

Birds, ladybugs and praying mantises are the gardener's best friends when it comes to insect control. Birds can be encouraged into the garden by feeding, hanging a birdhouse providing a bird bath or by planting plants that provide berries for them to eat.

Ladybugs are now for sale by the pint, quart or gallon. The average-sized garden can get by on a quart or less, as there will be about 25,000 to 30,000 bugs per quart. The cost is generally less than five dollars a quart. The average adult ladybug consumes between 40 and 50 aphids a day.

Praying mantis cases are also available and each one hatches up to 400 young. The cost is rather nominal for a case. A few gardeners have reported that this insect disappears rather rapidly from the garden, so you might want to experiment with just a few to begin with. They will eat any insect they can catch.

Weed Control

Get them before they start... Weeds compete with garden plants for nutrients, space, and sunlight. Weeds can make your otherwise tidy organic garden appear scraggly, and weeds harbor insect pests that carry diseases. The best way to control weeds without chemical herbicides is to prevent them from establishing themselves in your garden.

Adding a 3-inch layer of organic mulch is one of the best methods you can use  to prevent weeds. Mulch prevents sunlight from reaching weed seeds, preventing them from germinating. Mulch retains moisture in the soil and keeps it from compacting, so that you can easily pull young weeds as they sprout.

You can choose bagged wood chips or shredded bark for your garden mulch, but compost makes excellent mulch. If you use compost or other finely textured mulch like grass clippings, replace it as frequently as once a month, as it breaks down quickly.

If you are preparing to dig or till a new plot of exposed earth, devote a day to removing as many weeds as possible first. Many perennial weeds, like bindweed and thistle, spread by means of rhizomes or creeping stems. If you leave root segments behind, your tiller could distribute these viable plant parts throughout your garden, multiplying your weed problem a hundredfold.

You can make the greenhouse effect work for you by baking weeds and their seeds in situ, before you plant a barren plot. In the summer, cut all existing weeds to ground level. Water the area thoroughly, lay a sheet of clear plastic over the entire plot. Old shower curtain liners work well for this chore. Pin the plastic down with metal u-shaped stakes so the wind doesn't move the plastic sheets. If you use a single large sheet, weigh the center portion down with rocks to prevent cooling air pockets from forming.

After 8-10 weeks, the suns radiant energy will have sufficiently raised the temperature of the soil so that all weeds and seeds are no longer viable. As an added benefit, solarization kills many soil-borne diseases and pests. Your organic plot is now ready for a fall planting of cool weather vegetables.

No matter what you need when it comes to Organic Gardening, we have it all. So whether it be soil, nutrients, gardening idea or just information you be assured of getting from us. Most importantly, you will always get correct information and just what you need.


Miscellaneous Information You Might Need to Know

Organic Gardening Home

About Organic Gardening

Benefits of Organic Gardening

Start an Organic Garden

Organic Gardening Tips

Organic Soils

Organic Composting

Organic Herbs and Vegetables

Organic Fruits

Organic Flowers

Organic Heirlooms

Pest and Weed Control

Featured Video

Organic Gardening Made Easy
This video is an introduction to Organic Gardening.

We Can Help

We take great pride and in helping our customers start, maintain and produce healthy and productive plants.  Our experience with all gardening technology means that we will be one of your best sources for proper guidance and information for all your gardening needs.

Plus the products that we offer are all chosen for their quality and over-all value. Our knowledgeable staff will help you choose the right products for your garden and can assist in any of your gardening problems. Whether you visit our retail store or shop online, you can be sure that you will always find the products and the wealth of information you need for a successful garden.

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