|Organic Insect Control|
Nematodes are microscopic insects which attack grubs (and over 250 other garden pests) in your lawn/garden. Nematodes can only be applied when the soil temperature is above 15 Celsius. New grubs are born mid summer, eat roots through late summer and early fall followed by a winter dormancy period. In the spring they start eating again when the soil temperature reaches 15 Celsius and mature by July to repeat the cycle again. The smartest time to apply nematodes to kill your grubs is near the end of August. The second best window is in the spring (usually early May). The nematodes are just as effective in May but the grubs are bigger and take longer to consume. Nematodes need a moist environment and this means that you (may - depends on rain) have to water your lawn for a longer period in the spring to get the same effectiveness. Fall application stops the lawn damage before it gets severe. When you apply nematodes you can seed at the same time as the grubs will be dead before any significant damage can be done to the new grass roots - you will likely have to water anyway - why not get double the benefit. You should give the nematodes a week to work before you apply sod.
A standard package will do 3000 square feet and costs $29.99. Please only apply nematodes on cloudy/rainy days or in the late evening (and water in well) so the little guys don't get fried in the heat!
You can apply nematodes with a watering can. If you are applying with a hose-end sprayer then pour a couple inches worth of water into the reservoir, add the sponge, shake for one minute, fill the reservoir with water, shake for 20 seconds and spray. Shake occasionally while you spray. If you think the sprayer is clogged then try running some clear water through it (remove the reservoir and use a pail or jar filled with water to clear the straw and spray mechanism).
For more information about nematodes or for mail order please visit: www.environmentalfactor.com.
Our every day pricing on organic products such as fertilizer, weed control and insect control has been kept low to encourage more people to try environmentally friendly products which are better than their synthetic counterparts in so many ways. Make It Green conducts this part of our operation on a break-even basis. We feel that the health of the planet and all it's creatures is more important than profit. Many companies that produce organic product feel the same way and work with us to help keep the costs down and to educate consumers about organic alternatives.[Top]
Organic Insect Control
We have always preached about least invasive techniques for insect control. Here are some questions to ask yourself (in order) :
1. Is the damage really that bad? Can your plant afford a few chewed leaves?. If so, leave it alone. If you leave the "bad bugs" alone then there is a good chance that some "good bugs" (or birds) will come along and eat them.
2. Can I pick them off by hand or knock them off with a jet of water. Aphids and other sucking insects can have their mouthparts severely damaged when knocked off a plant with water. Spittlebugs are often killed by predators or dehydration when they try to climb back onto the plant (not that they do much damage anyway)
3. Can I block them from their intended victims? Copper barriers can be used to repel slugs. Teflon tape can be used to prevent caterpillars from feeding on tree leaves or ants from farming aphids on a tree.
4. Have I done everything I can to prevent this problem (or take steps to do so for the future). Companion planting, planting a few nectar producing plants to encourage predators and keeping weeds or grass in the area cut short should be considered. Choosing plants that don't get eaten or are vigorous enough not to care about it can help. Choosing plants whose requirements fit the location helps prevent stress for the plant. Stressed plants attract insects.
5. All else failing, what is the least thing I can spray on my plants? We are great believers in targeted products with low side effects. Elsewhere on this site we talk about using Grub Buster Nematodes for white grub control. Nematodes are also useful for controlling[Top]
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