Pests are always your worst enemy when you’re planting. They can grow on leaves, branches, and your soil too. As this will leave your plants and roots unhealthy, it is always a must to maintain and keep your garden on the lookout to have a lovely surrounding you’ll never get tired of looking at every single day.
So how do you keep your soil free from pests? Here’s a quick guide you may follow to achieve a healthier and pest-free garden.
Termite colonies can grow on the soil of your garden aside from the wooden structures inside your homes. To battle and avoid a full termite colony, you may need prevention first. As termites can grow on damp wood and surfaces, make sure to distance wood from your garden and treat them to avoid infestation. On the other hand, gutters are also a hotspot for them, so make sure to extend them away from your garden too. Always remember to have moisture control to woo these pests away.
Moreover, you can also use boric acid for this. Boric acid is less acidic than any other pesticide and is plant-friendly as well. Just follow the directions indicated, and make sure to use gloves and a dust mask when intending to pour the acid already.
Ants may also be colonizing your garden soil. When they seem to be microscopic, it will be hard to find them, and spray insecticides just to kill them —— the best way to counter them is to use a bait.
One way to do this is by using baking soda. You may mix baking soda and powdered sugar for this, where ants will be eventually drawn to the scent of sugar and consume baking soda too. When ants consume baking soda, it will disrupt their body function and can cause them to die ultimately. More so, you can also repel them by using white vinegar. The smell of vinegar causes the ants to move away from your garden, where they will immediately move away when they smell it. Just make sure you mix the vinegar with water to reduce its concentration, making it soil-friendly but a good way to repel them in the end.
These pests can be helpful for your soil, but if they grow to a hundred, you will have a problem. As they can feed on plants too, it is best to keep them in a limited number and repel them to avoid infestation.
If you see irregular holes and early seedling death due to decaying roots, millipedes might be present. One way to prevent them from having a colony is to keep your garden moist, thus avoiding decaying roots in the long run which they are much more likely to feed on. You can also have bait for them; place some nearly-rotten fruits and vegetables in one part of your garden (tomatoes, strawberries, cabbage), where they will swarm on and feed. Once they get to a high number, place them where birds and other predators can feed on them.
When you see fat and white worms on your garden soil, it might be a curl grub. These pests can chew on your leaves and even beneath the soils, munching on your roots that can leave plants to die eventually. When you see them hanging around your garden, get rid of them immediately.
Keeping your soil hydrated and healthy is your best possible solution. This prevents curl grubs from laying eggs, and they often only hatch on dry surfaces and soils. Another preventive measure is to use biodegradable and organic detergent. Just pour a mixture of water and the detergents and spray it on your soil, leaving the curl grubs to surface in your garden. You can handpick them if you see them, or better yet leave them for the birds to feed on.
Fungus Gnats lay at least 300 eggs per adult. They can live up to a month when they have something to feed on, most especially on the roots of growing plants in your garden. They are usually attracted to humidity, high temperatures, and decomposing organic matter.
If you see white and susceptible larvae on your plants and soils, you must act quickly. One way to do this is to dry your soil for one to two inches, where it would be less attractive for females to lay eggs. Additionally, Fungus Gnats are also attracted to the yellow color —- so leave a trap. Yellow sticky traps can be a good idea and once eggs are laid and females are stuck in the trap, burn them or throw them away from your garden. Consequently, nematodes can also be used for this for them to feed on fungus. They are garden-friendly but very good at maintaining a healthy and fungus-free environment for your plants and soils.
Perhaps you’ve already found remedies to avoid pests for your leaves and branches. However, you may not know it, but pests can also grow on soil too. When this happens, act quickly and repel the pests from colonizing your plants. This will lead to a healthier garden that looks fresh, well maintained, and lively for days.