Aphids, worms… In the garden, how to fight harmful insects?

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Our gardens often harbor unwanted visitors: seedling flies, caterpillars, aphids, beetles and other red beetles which, if we are not careful, can wreak serious havoc.

To fight these invaders there are still authorized chemical insecticides, but the essential protection of biodiversity requires using a more natural arsenal to repel undesirables. Fortunately, there is no shortage of weapons to choose from.

Ladybugs against aphids

Let’s start with the most common pest in the garden: the aphid. It especially attacks young shoots and budded flowers.

There The best fighter against aphids is the ladybug.. As an adult, she can eat 100 per day. The larvae are even more voracious. They can devour up to 150 aphids a day.

Adult ladybugs can be found as larvae or eggs at a garden center or online. This preventive treatment is quite expensive. About 18 euros for 80 larvae.

Ladybugs are effective against aphids. (©Jürgen Kottmann/AdobeStock)

Natural treatments

Another cheaper treatment method: black soap and baking soda. Mix one liter of water with two tablespoons of liquid black soap and one tablespoon of baking soda and spray.

This treatment is also effective against certain fungi such as powdery mildew, which especially attacks rose bushes.

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Rich in nitrogen, nettle manure It is a good fertilizer, but it is also an excellent treatment against aphids, spider mites and beetles.

And you can do it yourself: macerate a kilo of young nettle stems in 10 liters of water for 15 days, filter. Then it must be diluted in a proportion of 1 volume of manure to 10 volumes of water.

natural treatment
natural treatment (©L.Bouvier/AdobeStock)

The right mix of cultures

In the garden, preventive control is better than post-hoc curing. One of the most ecological solutions is to combine repellent plants with your garden and flower beds. The right combination of crops will prevent you from having to intervene later.

Aromatic plants with strong odors have an interesting repellent effect against aphids: marigolds, marigolds, lavender or even rue.

On the contrary, other plants attract aphids. This is the case of nasturtiums. Planting them in a strategic place to divert them from your garden and flower beds.

Crop rotation

To prevent pests from permanently establishing themselves in your garden, practice four-season crop rotation: alternating leafy vegetables, seed vegetables, fruiting vegetables, and root vegetables.

This way, soil-dwelling parasites won’t find their favorite vegetables there. Crop rotation also has the advantage of preserving nutrients.

slug hunting

It was time to talk about one of the gardeners’ worst enemies: the slug, a true devourer of lettuce, strawberries and young zucchini. A real disaster!

The beer bowl: the most famous tip for getting rid of it is the typical example of a really false good idea. Slugs are attracted to beer. They will come in numbers. Some will drown in the container. But most will take a drink before attacking our plantations again. The effect obtained will be the opposite of what was expected.

On the other hand, certain plants effectively repel slugs. This is the case of the comfrey and borage, but also garlic. Make a decoction of garlic and spray it on the base of the plants. And goodbye slugs!

APEI-News. F.C.

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