Mark Cullen on controlling pesky garden bugs
Published Wednesday, July 11, 2012 7:32AM EDT
Last Updated Wednesday, July 11, 2012 8:13AM EDT
Many people get very bothered by bugs. But I pick and choose the ones that I get bothered about.
The truth is 90 per cent of the bugs in your garden are good bugs. They eat other bugs, pollinate flowers to produce fruit and are generally not a nuisance to humans or plants.
However, there are a few bugs that do chow down on your plants or bite and sting people. It’s worth paying special attention to these bugs.
Many bugs like aphids, which are very persistent, can be controlled with a sharp blast of water from the end of your hose. Use a pistol-grip hose end for this job. It’s best to tackle this job in the evening when bugs are quiet and least active. Also, concentrate your water cannon on the ends of the new growth. This is the soft plant tissue that aphids enjoy the most.
Many other bugs can be controlled using insecticidal soap, which has a special fatty acid in it that has insecticidal properties. Soft-shelled bugs like young larvae and caterpillars can be controlled with the direct application of insecticidal soap.
Other bugs are best controlled using traps. Slugs go for the yeast in a "slug saloon." If you run out of yeast beer will also do the job.
Japanese beetles are trapped using a pheromone (or sex) trap. Ants can also be trapped.
There are many solutions to what is bugging you. Visit my website for more answers or drop by your local hardware store or garden centre for more help.