Tips for a Naturally Pest-Free Garden

STOCK PHOTO/Observer-Dispatch/Observer-Dispatch, Utica, N.Y./TNS

There’s no greater joy than a garden full of perfect-looking plants.

Unfortunately, many pests use our gardens as their own salad bar. However, with a few simple adjustments, you can stop problems before they start.

Here are some garden-natural tips to help you this season.

Start with Quality Soil

Tilling in organic matter such as compost will keep your soil “clean” and provide the beneficial elements to keep pests away.

Look for Disease Resistant Plants

It’s easier to prevent problems than it is to get rid of them. Many vegetable and ornamental plant varieties are bred to be more pest and disease resistant.

Water in the Morning

If you water later in the day, the foliage will be damp during the cooler nighttime air, which creates an ideal condition for promoting fungus and disease issues.

Keep Your Garden Clean

Remove weeds, faded blooms or plant debris that can be breeding grounds for problems. Cut off dead or infected leaves as soon as you see them so they don’t contaminate the whole plant.

Use Traps

Yellow “sticky” cards and other natural pest traps are available at garden centers. Use those first instead of reaching for a pesticide.

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