Natural Pesticides For Your Yard


natural pesticides

As spring arrives and crocuses and tulips begin to pop up in your yard, less desirable visitors of spring will be arriving as well. If you tend to get fleas, fireants, grubs or mites in your yard, you might be tempted to call an exterminator. Pesticides can be applied to your lawn and should, in most cases, greatly reduce or eliminate the problem. Unfortunately, toxic pesticides create some problems of their own. First, they will be killing the insects that aren’t pests. These are the insects that will tend to keep the actual pests in check, so your efforts might actually be counterproductive. Secondly, pesticides are toxic and can get into water supplies. They can be dangerous to small children and pets, neither of whom can read the “pesticides recently applied” signs, and both of whom might walk on your newly treated lawn.

If you want to remove yard pests from your landscape but don’t want to use toxic chemicals, is there an answer for you? In many cases, yes, you can use natural pesticides on your lawn. Here are some ideas:

Cedar Cedar chips can keep many pests at bay.

Using cedar as mulch and sprinkling cedar sawdust in your grass will repel fleas, ticks, mites and chiggers, among other unwelcome guests. Cedar can also repel venomous snakes and rodents, if you have issues with these pests. Many people find the smell of cedar to be pleasant. It won’t affect butterflies and bees, so you will still be able to enjoy your pollinated fruit trees, flowers and vegetables.

Beneficial Nematodes

Beneficial nematodes are a type of worm that you can add to your lawn and garden. While you might balk at adding more creepy crawlies to your property, remember that the vast majority of insects, worms and bugs are actually either beneficial or harmless! Nematodes fall under the “beneficial” category. They will feed on cutworms, grubs, ants, fleas, beetles and more. An added benefit is that if you can rid your yard of grubs, then moles that might be burrowing in your lawn will most likely move on to someone else’s yard, because you’ll be removing their food source.

Milky Spore

Do you get swarms of Japanese beetles in your yard? Kill them at their larval stage with milky spore, a natural bacteria that is host-specific. When the Japanese beetle grubs ingest the spore, then will contract a bacterial disease and die. This stops the life cycle of this particular beetle. Even better, the spore only needs to be applied every fifteen to forty years! As the grubs die and decompose, they will release more spores into the soil, ready to be eaten by more grubs and spread the same way. It’s best if you can get several people in your neighborhood to treat their yards with this safe bacteria, which will not affect humans, water supplies, other insects, birds or pets. This way, an entire community can be Japanese beetle-free within a matter of weeks or months.

Talk to your landscaper about different types of safe, organic or natural pest control options. Many homeowners are concerned with the health of not only their families and pets, but also the environment, and these products are becoming increasingly popular.

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