Pests are a common challenge, but that doesn’t mean they need to gain the upper hand. In fact, it’s very easy to prevent pests altogether. Prevention is better than a cure, and it’s kinder on nature, too. In this short video, we’ll share seven simple strategies for effective pest prevention. They’re all natural, organic, and proven to work!
7 Simple Ways to Prevent Pests
Here are seven easy ways to prevent garden pests ruining your crop.
1. Grow Resistant Varieties
2. Confuse Pests with Interplanting
Interplant crops to make it harder for pests to locate their preferred crop. Try interplanting different types of vegetables, or mix in herbs or flowers. Also try growing vegetables with unusual colored leaves, such as red or purple cabbages, that insects won’t expect.
3. Plant Outside of Peak Times
Pests are problematic at specific times, so it’s worth growing vegetables before or after peak season for their pests. For example, flea beetle activity peaks in midsummer so growing vegetables such as Asian greens and mustards in the fall, when fewer beetles are about, sidesteps the problem. Or try growing early peas, which usually escape the attention of pea moths.
4. Grow Out of the Way
Grow carrots and cabbage family crops in pots that are 18 inches or more above ground to keep them safe from low-flying carrot rust flies and cabbage root flies. Raised pots also reduce damage from slugs and other soil-dwelling pests.
Start seedlings off in pots or trays under cover helps avoid early setbacks from birds and slugs. Once they’re bigger and sturdier they can withstand minor attacks, and can be safely transplanted.
5. Use Barriers
Use insect mesh or floating row covers on hoops or frames to protect crops from pests such as cabbage white caterpillars, carrot rust fly, aphids, and squash bugs. Secure them around the edges to prevent pests from creeping in.
6. Attract Beneficial Bugs
Ladybugs, hoverflies, parasitic wasps, and lacewings are just a few of the beneficial bugs that help keep pest numbers low by eating them or hatching their young inside them. More beneficial bugs can be tempted into your garden by growing lots of the flowers they love, like cosmos, sweet alyssum, dill, and yarrow, among or alongside your veggies.
7. Keep Plants Healthy
Strong, healthy plants are less likely to succumb to pests. Make sure to grow plants in the right conditions, fertilize them, and water well in dry weather. Feed the soil with plenty of compost or other well-rotted organic matter to encourage a robust root system that maintains healthy growth.
Try Out the Almanac Garden Planner for Free
As a courtesy, the online Almanac Garden Planner is free for 7 days. This is plenty of time to play around on your computer and try it out. There are absolutely no strings attached. We are most interested in encouraging folks to try growing a garden of goodness!