Organic Pest Management Tips

Organic cultivation requires natural methods of dealing with pests. Organic pest management methods should take into account the preservation of soil microbiome and biodiversity in general regardless of the pest you may be dealing with. For my first tip, I'm going to lump 3 common but nasty leaf sucking pests into one management process. Thrips, spider mites and aphids. First of all, ensure all environmental practices such as watering and temperature are optimal for soil health and plant growth. Unhealthy plants send signals to pests to be eaten. Once you have determined your pest is one of the ones mentioned above, make a foliar spray consisting of an all natural neem oil product at the rate of 2-3ml/L and spray all leaf surfaces top and bottom at sundown every 3 days for at least 4 applications to break the breeding cycle. Then, order some cucumeris predatory mites from Bugs for Bugs at www.goodbugs.org.au and stop foliar spraying. These highly effective, all round predator mites will feed on the larval stages of thrips and mites. Additionally you can introduce californicus predatory mites if spider mites are a more severe problem, however after 4 foliar applications of neem oil there should only be a small pest population left. In a living organic, probiotic garden, introducing beneficial predatory insects is an excellent way to not only control pests but to increase the biodiversity of your garden which is what we should strive for with organic cultivation practices.

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