Monday, March 17, 2008

Things to Try Before Resorting to Natural Insecticide

Some gardeners or crop growers tend to use natural insecticide or other pesticides as a matter of course. They don't even consider trying to grow crops without them. Others use any such product only after exhausting all other methods. There are things you can try before you commit yourself to using a natural insecticide.

First of all, you might just try growing your crops without any preparation. One wine grower recently tried this. He decided to try it, but to have natural insecticide on hand should he need it. As he waited for his crop to come in he watched the crop.

Surprisingly, the crops showed no more insect damage than usual. He never needed to put on the natural insecticide, or any other for that matter. What's more, he noticed that the numbers of beneficial insects were increasing.

In fact, one way to save on natural insecticide is to bring in, or encourage the growth of, natural predators. These natural predators feed on the very insects you wish to destroy. They may be snakes, spiders, or other insects. If you can boost their population to an acceptable level, they will do their jobs without natural insecticide.

An example of this happened in Africa in the 1970's when 80% of the cassava crop was being destroyed by the cassava mealy bug. They found its natural enemy, a tiny wasp. They let it loose in the region, and the threat of famine went away.

A way to use the properties of natural insecticide without buying the products is to simply grow them. These are grown next to your other crops as companion crops. While they are actually a natural insecticide, they aren't one you buy or prepare as such. However, the close proximity of the natural insecticide plants lets their active ingredients protect your food crops.

Several bugs can be eradicated mechanically or manually without the use of natural insecticide. For instance, you can trap wireworms by using a large can such as a tomato juice can. You poke holes in it and fill it with vegetable peelings. Put it in the border of you garden. After it's been set for a couple of days, you empty the trap and reset it.

You can hand pick many different types of bugs off of plants. One such bug is the squash bug. This avoids using natural insecticide. All you have to do is drop the bugs into a pail of soapy water.

Where you grow your plants makes a difference in whether you will need natural insecticide or not. If you put your plants up off the ground, they are less likely to get bugs on them. It is good to put them up on trellises if possible.

There are a lot of other ways to keep from using natural insecticide on your crops and plants. The more natural you can make your garden the better, right? Besides, buying natural insecticide is often costly. However, if you find that you do need something extra, natural insecticide is the safest way to go.

By: Simon Tay, the author of Your Personal Development Website:

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