rewards of evening harvest time in the organic garden
When it comes to gardening without using cosmetic pesticides,
there are four areas of prime importance. These include plant
choices, knowledge of plant enemies, managing environmental
conditions (that are within our control) and preventive measures.
To a certain degree, plant choices can determine gardening
success. I suggest researching potential plantings beforehand
to save future heartache. For information, look to reputable
websites, gardening books, the experiences and knowledge of
gardener friends and neighbors, garden center staff and your
local master gardeners' group. Choose plants that are disease
and bug resistant, that are strong enough to compete with
troublesome weeds, and that are zone appropriate.
Toads prey on insects, slugs and snails and are some of
the best helpers you can have in the garden.
plant choice is important, so is being able to identify your
plants' opponents. When it comes to insects, this can sometimes
be tricky, as some, such as lily beetles and their larvae,
are outright enemies, while others, such as ladybugs and their
larvae, can be beneficial in the garden. Other insects can
be both detrimental and beneficial, depending on the circumstances.
In great numbers, earwigs, for example, can destroy your plants,
but in lesser numbers, they can help them by consuming rotted
materials and aphids. It's important to remember that of the
more than 2,000 different kinds of bugs in our backyards (not
counting the soil organisms), most are harmless, and many
are outright helpful. Tachinid flies, ladybugs, parasitoid
wasps, assassin bugs, honey bees, butterflies, lacewings,
mantises, spiders and syrphid flies are just a few of the
wonderful little bugs, along with creatures such as frogs,
toads, birds and snakes, that can help our gardens flourish.