Organic Gardening and Pest Control

Pest control is one of the greatest challenges of organic gardening but it is not impossible to protect your vegetables by all natural and 100% organic measures. In fact, pests are not as problematic as they may seem at a first glance and there are several ways to keep your garden pest free without the use of harsh chemicals.

Organic gardening primarily bases on pest prevention because fighting the pests is by far more challenging. For that reason it is crucial to take care for all the preventive measures that will significantly reduce the risk of pest infestation. Firstly, you should make sure that your garden receives at least 6 hours of direct sunlight because most vegetables thrive in sunny areas. The next thing that is the key in pest prevention is to provide your vegetables all the necessary nutrients by fertilizing the soil and adequate watering. There are some differences between different vegetables and for that reason you should always save the plant labels where are typically found the basic requirements such as frequency of watering, sunlight exposure, optimal space, etc. However, if you have thrown the labels away you can easily find these information on the Internet, and gardening magazines and books at the nearest library.

Organic Garden

Plants that have optimal conditions for growth will fight off any pests and diseases on their own a lot easier but it is crucial to focus on vegetables that grow well in your area. If you are not sure which vegetables will grow best in your garden, you can ask other gardeners in your neighbourhood or simply try and see. However, do not draw any conclusions if not achieving success in the first or even the second year, especially if there were unfavourable weather conditions or even hail. On the other hand, you are probably wasting your time and energy if being unsuccessful three years in a row because in this case it probably is not the weather’s fault.

The above mentioned preventive measures not always enough to keep the pests away. For that reason it is highly important to attract beneficial insects such as ladybugs and lacewings into your garden. These insects are predatory and feed on insects that can do a substantial damage to your garden. This means that the more beneficial insects in your garden the less the insect pests. In order to attract these insects into your garden you should plant some plants they are attracted to. For example, ladybugs are attracted by coriander, marigold, chives, dandelion, yarrow and many other plants which are either edible or will enhance your garden with their beautiful flowers. You should also consider building or buying an insect home but if you think that you do not have enough beneficial insects in your garden you can also order ladybugs online.

Organic Garden

Planting the right kind of plants will not attract the beneficial insects only but it will also help you repel the harmful ones which is why it is good to have them in or nearby your garden. Some of the most popular companion plants are marigold, tagetes, onions, garlic and chives.

In case if none of the above mentioned preventive measures work, you have two options. Treat the infested vegetables immediately with organic pesticides or wait and see what happens. Some plants are able to fight off the pests on their own or/and aid of beneficial insects but the others cannot survive without a gardener’s intervention. However, if you intend to intervene you should apply an organic pesticide as soon as possible because it is very difficult to save a plant when heavily infested.