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Organic pest management for homeowners

Abell Pest Control

While chemical pesticides can be effective for managing pest problems, they can also be harsh and cause problems. Fumigating with methyl bromide, for instance, can lead to difficulty breathing if administered improperly. Another downside of using chemical pesticides to manage your garden? They can runoff into streams, infiltrate the ecosystem and kill off beneficial insects - which is why companies like Health Canada are looking to phase out pesticides that can be used to kill bees.

Chemical pesticides aren't just for large corporations - home gardeners use them as well. For those looking to switch over to organic, we've got you covered.

Spray ants with a cayenne blend
It always feel like ants have a tendency to get everywhere. One stray peel or small spill can quickly turn into an ant infestation. Horticulturalist Estelle Bogoch-Stelmach suggested making a pungent, spicy spray to keep ants away. Blend together one onion, three cloves of garlic, one tablespoon of hot sauce along with a dash of cayenne pepper and chili powder, then strain to remove the solids. Once you're left with the liquid, add 1/2 cup of liquid with several tablespoons of dish soap and water. Bogoch-Stelmach suggested preparing a bottle and always leaving it on the counter, so you'll always be prepared.

If you plan on spraying this blend on your plants, make sure to douse the leaves with water after each treatment. Soap attracts sunlight - and can cause your plants to dry out on a hot day.

Use manual tricks
Sometimes the most effective organic pest management system uses manual tools like a row cover, recommended Zoe Blarowski. Vegetables like cabbage may become the target of flying insects without the help of row covers. Another manual tool you can use to keep slugs away is sandpaper or crushed eggshells. Both of these products create a rough texture, making them more likely to drive away slugs and snails. You can also create shade from cabbage leaves or pots that slugs and snails will take refuge in. Then you can remove them without having to pick them up by hand!

With a few changes, home gardeners can go organic this summer. You'll enjoy fresh produce with no concerns about chemicals. To learn more, reach out to Abell Pest Control.

About the author:

Abell Pest Control is a family owned Canadian company dedicated to providing effective, professional and courteous service in pest management.Started in 1924 with one office, Abell now employs several hundred people with branch offices across Canada and the United States.

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