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Weeds and Pest Control

How can I prevent weeds from growing in my garden?

Raised beds generally require less weeding than in-ground gardens. Soil conditions are more controlled with less foreign seeds, and the planter sides are barriers against invading plants. Fill the tops of raised beds with sterile bag soil and mulch around plants to prevent airborn seeds from taking root. Keep the grounds around your garden free of weeds and mow tall Read more…


What is companion planting and how can it benefit my garden?

Companion planting is the technique of growing crops next to other plants that provide natural benefits such as improved soil fertility, pest control, and productivity. Consult the table below for help choosing companion plants for your garden. Planting Crop Companion Plants Incompatible Plants Effects and Benefits Alliums (garlic, leeks, onions and chives) Tomatoes, carrots, fruit trees, strawberries, roses, beets, cucumbers, Read more…


How can I get rid of slugs and snails in my garden?

An infestation of slugs and snails can decimate a vegetable garden when humid and damp weather rolls in. To thwart these pests it takes a variety of techniques. Barriers and deterrents are your first line of defense. Hard-leafed plants with strong scents such as rosemary, lavender and basil can be used as an aromatic wall that discourages slugs and snails Read more…


How do I keep insects from eating my garden?

You can organically control insect pests by setting traps, by using companion planting with insectary plants, and by using organically derived sprays or diatomaceous earth when necessary. Keeping backyard chickens or attracting beneficial wildlife such as insect eating birds, lizards and amphibians will help to keep insect populations in check. Removing unnecessary habitat such as tall grass, woody debris, and infested Read more…


How do I keep burrowing pest such as gophers out of my garden?

Half-inch steel hardware cloth attached to the bottom of raised beds is an effect barrier against gophers and burrowing rodents. Hardware cloth is available at most hardware stores in 3 and 4 foot wide rolls and can be cut to length using metal shears. Be sure to wear gloves, as the cut edges can be sharp. Bend the edges of the material Read more…


How do I keep deer out of my garden?

Deer fencing made from light weight material such as plastic can be purchased in rolls and secured to tall stakes or posts. Deer fences should be at least 7 feet tall so the animals can’t jump over. Bird netting prevents birds and deer alike from reaching fruits and berries. Drap the material over posts or trellises and secure it to Read more…


How can I keep rabbits out of my garden?

Staked fencing can be used to keep rabbits out of your garden. Use three foot high metal mesh fencing burried underground or secured to the sides of the planter as a barrier against rabbits. Tall raised beds will help prevent rabits from reaching plants from above, while hardware cloth secured to the bottoms of raised beds will keep rabits from digging up Read more…


How do I get rid of mice and rats in my garden?

The trick is to catch infestations early and to be consistent in trapping and killing rodents before they bear more offspring. Mechanical traps are the safest and most effective control method against rats and mice. After setting traps, check them regularly for dead rodents. You can safely bury non-poisoned carcasses in a shallow hole, well away from the home and Read more…


How do I keep dogs out of my garden?

Dogs can dig up plants and soil, contaminate gardens with urine and feces, and generally wreck havoc on delicate landscapes, unless trained otherwise. Besides fencing, there are a number of ways to discourage dogs from your garden. Many sprays and powders made to deter dogs are commercially available. Similarly, numerous home remedies, usually containing mustard powder, cayenne and similar ingredients Read more…


How do I prevent fungal diseases in my garden?

Fungal diseases, such as powdery mildew, are a common problem in wet and humid environments. Raised beds reduce the risk of fungal infection by elevating plants above the ground to increase airflow and lower humidity. Avoid over-watering and watering at night, particularly in cooler weather. Be careful to water at the ground level so infected foliage doesn’t get wet. Trellis plants Read more…