Home Garden Defense Against Pests – Knowing Is Half The Battle
When it comes to home garden defense for pest control, everyone assumes they are capable of the job and that it’s easy. While the application of some sprays and basic traps are simple, there are some common pitfalls that turn an innocent DIY project into one that can hurt you. A handy guide to explore first before you run out and buy the most expensive or cheapest products out there, is this article by the EPA. It covers a lot of topics and frequently asked questions a regular homeowner would want to know before starting any spraying or applying any traps.
Read The Instruction Labels
Step one before doing any spraying: be sure to always read and follow the spray’s instructions and safety warnings. All products should have a chemical list, and in some areas you could be breaking the law if you’re using a chemical not allowed by your local EPA rules and regulations.
The University of California Agriculture and Natural Resources (UCIPM) says an important step before buying a pesticide is to check the label to be sure it is appropriate to use on your plants or treatment site. An article posted to their site explains that you could risk poisoning the food you’re growing if a spray is not properly applied or is too close in proximity to the garden.
The group also says some pesticides applied in the garden can move off target by drifting in the air or washing off into storm drains or creeks, and risk damaging a nearby water supply. To be sure you’re free to use a product, the EPA says you can call your local or a state University Extension office. They are always happy to help anyone with questions or concerns about pesticides before you use them. Safety first!
General Garden Pest Tips
The idea of using pesticide sprays or traps can turn off a lot of people, after all, many grow vegetables and other edibles in their gardens. Our take on this is that while we understand the precaution, hence why we don’t treat gardens using our services, remember that many of the vegetables you buy from the market were also protected with pesticides. We always recommend washing your garden veggies as well as your store bought veggies, but for the most part, you won’t be spraying pesticides directly on the edible parts of your plants. Even so, there are plenty of natural pest control sprays that you can use, just note they won’t be as effective, and you’ll still need to wash your veggies after their use! If you want to go one step further however, you can also plant specific plants to help deter pests, though these aren’t guaranteed to work as effectively as a concentrated pest spray, even a natural one, but they’re still better than nothing for home garden defense against pests and can be found with a quick Google search.
Using The Right Amount
The National Pesticide Information Center next says making sure the pest is properly identified is also key. The article says, quote: “Your efforts won’t do any good if they are not tailored to your pest. Even different types of ants eat different foods and require different control measures.” They say if what you’re trying to keep away from your garden is difficult to identify, locate, access or requires special equipment, that’s your first sign to call a pest management professional.
When you do decide to go ahead with using a pesticide outside, the UCIPM says be sure to check and make sure you’re measuring and diluting the pesticide concentrates. They say the proper measurement is: “Essential for their effective and safe use,” and that you must follow these procedures properly. If this is starting to sound tough and confusing, that’s why it’s always recommended that you call the experts before trying any powerful insecticides.
This last step you can take before trying at-home spraying products can actually save you quite a bit of money. The UCIPM says more often than not, most people imagine, pesticide products are applied unnecessarily. They say this is because there are simple roots of an issue that you can identify with the naked eye. The article says the cause of damage to your garden crop could just be physical. They say damage can come from other factors such as incorrect irrigation, poor drainage, herbicide toxicity, or physical damage.