You love the plants, flowers, fruits and vegetables growing in your garden.
So do bugs.
And while some insect varieties can be beneficial to your backyard plant life, a lot of them can cause some serious damage.
Before you reach for the inspect spray, New Jersey gardeners, consider these pest control tips for keeping bugs away from your plants.
1. Safe for people, not so much for pests
There are certain household substances – flour, beer and salt among them – which are completely safe for people but can be poison to insects, snails and slugs.
Another natural remedy: Take an empty two-liter soda bottle and add a cup of sugar and cup of apple cider vinegar, and some small pieces of a sliced banana peel. Fill the bottle with water cold water and leave it out to attract and kill pests.
Some pests, like aphids and whiteflies, can be turned away just by adding water. Set the nozzle of your hose to a fine mist and blast them from the leaves.
If water doesn’t work, add some soap. Soap will eat through the outer shell of most insects. Just put a tea spoon of natural dish soap in a squirt bottle and add water, then spray the mixture onto areas that are infested.
2. On dangerous ground
Some pests need to get to your plants on foot, so to speak. But you can fend them off by making the ground around your plants treacherous. Spread a layer of crushed eggshells underneath your plants, and caterpillars, slugs and snails will take their business elsewhere.
3. What’s that smell?
Some plants act as natural deterrents to pests because of the way they smell. Aromatic herbs like mint, fennel, basil, lemongrass and citronella can chase away insects such as potato beetles and aphids. Plant them near your vegetables to rid your garden of pests…and to give yourself a way to season your meals.
4. Turn predators into prey
Do you have pests preying on your plants? Turn them into the prey by attracting their natural predators to your yard. For example, releasing ladybugs into your garden can help reduce the number of destructive insects such as aphids, Japanese beetles and caterpillars.
Read our blog post on more ways you can attract beneficial insects, birds and even bats to your garden to improve the health of your plants.
5. Healthy plants = Pest prevention
One of the most reliable ways of keeping insects out of your garden is to grow healthy plants that can fend off bugs.
Conduct routine check-ups on your plants to look for damage or discoloration. Remove any diseased leaves or plants. Make sure your plants have the right amount of water and are growing in nutrient-rich soil. And by keeping weeds out of your garden, you’re giving pests fewer places to hide.
Are you looking for insect spray in New Jersey, or other ways to keep pests out of your garden? Mendham Garden Center can help.
We carry a number of pest control products, including:
- Merit, a systemic pesticide designed to protect against pests like white grubs, molecrickets and Japanese beetles.
- Sevin, a white crystalline pesticide that can fend off moths, roaches, ticks and mosquitoes.
- Milky spore, a natural bacterium that kills Japanese beetle grubs.
- Captain Jack’s Dead Bug Brew, a New Jersey insect spray that kills bagworms, beetles, caterpillars, gypsy moths, leaf miners, spider mites and more.
Visit one of our three locations for more information on our New Jersey insect spray products, and advice on how to protect your garden against pests.