Non-Toxic Pesticide Alternatives

  • Use Your Hands: If you see one or two bugs on one of your plants just flick them off. If you have an infestation of bugs this will not work, but it’s a fine solution if you have a minor problem. Also, to prevent the bugs from getting right back up and attacking your plant again just drop them into some soapy water. Washing your plants with a hose can knock a number of pests loose, though once again there’s no guarantee they won’t be back. A more permanent solution is to vacuum bugs off your plants. Using row covers or even lines of soap of copper flashing can help keep pests away. As far as weeds are concerned, you can always try putting them up by hand. Some are too resilient or too deeply entrenched, but it never hurts to try. Just make sure you pull them up by the roots. If you see a branch or leaf which looks wrinkled or diseased simply pull it off before the issue has time to spread. There are plenty of things one can do with their hands without having to rely on pesticides.
  • Using Heat: A great way to kill a wide variety of weeds is to simply pour some boiling water on them.  Bear in mind that this will damage just about any plant in the vicinity,  so if a weed is growing in close proximity to a plant you actually want in your garden this might not be the best approach. You can also use this same trick to get rid of ants by pouring the boiling water onto their mounds. But you don’t necessarily have to use water. A propane torch or, indeed, any portable heat source will do the job nicely. Another way to use heat against weeds is to cover them in plastic. If you secure it to the ground tightly enough  the plants will eventually overheat and die. It might take 4-6 weeks, but it’s an effective method for clearing out a large patch of weeds.
  • Using Traps and Lures: At night, many insects are drawn to light. To prevent being swarmed by them, set exterior light sources away from sitting areas, windows or doors. That way the bugs will go to the light and leave you alone. If you want to attract slugs, simply put a teaspoon of yeast in a cup of water and place it in a container outside. The slugs will move to it, allowing you to remove them with ease. Fly paper lives up to its name by trapping and disabling flies. Yellow fly paper is an especially good choice, as some varieties are attracted to the floor. Hang your fly strips in areas commonly used by flies, generally contracted vertical areas.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *