Submitted by Joan Regan
WEEDS: 1 C salt, 4 lt. White vinegar, boil till salt dissolves, adding 1 tbs. each of blue Dawn and vegetable oil. Keep in a spray bottle and spray weeds completely covering them. Repeat as necessary.
BUGS: 1 tsp. blue Dawn, 1 tbs. vegetable oil, ½ tsp. baking soda, 2 lt. water. Spray leaves remembering the underside as well. The little darlings do like to hide when the soap comes out. Repeat, repeat.
ANTS: Scuff up the soil then sprinkle equal parts baking soda and icing sugar on the soil. Repeat. Keep my mixture in a mason jar with holes punched in the lid. DO NOT use anywhere near Peonies; they need the ants to help their buds open up.
EAR WIGS: In the evening I lay a rolled up newspaper (wet) on the ground where there is a problem. The little buggers will crawl into the paper during the night. In the morning submerge the paper in a pail FULL of water and drown the darlings, making sure the water level is not high enough for them to crawl out. A 12” piece of garden hose also works well.
SLUGS and SNAILS: Orange, tangerine, mandarins, any orange citrus peel works fine, placed in the garden around plants. Hostas especially. The peels attract the slimy little brats and it kills them. No need to pick up the peels or slimies; they will be gone in a day or two. Early morning or at dusk when they come out to feast is the best time.
APHIDS: Are slow moving, so a good shot of water from the hose will stop them and they’re so slow they die before climbing back up. Chives are another deterrent because they spread so fast. I pot them up and place the pots in the garden where there is a problem. With Roses one pot of chives to every 3-4 Rose bushes will keep them away. Make sure you don’t let the chives seed out.
SQUIRRELS and CHIPMUNKS: Nothing is more maddening than spending time potting up our annuals only to discover the Squirrels or Chippies have dug out all the plants. I’ve had great success with the green plastic fencing. Once the pots are full of planting mix/soil I lay the fencing flat and cut holes large enough to poke my annuals through. No need to cover the fencing; the plant will fill in over it and the fencing will keep the critters from digging. With planters already store planted – just cut a few strips long enough to hide in the pots, tuck them hiding up and down. The critters will feel them and stay away.
These Natural remedies have worked well for me over the years, and being all natural, we might have to be persistent but it sure is better than using chemicals. Now if only I could find a remedy for that #*%#@%$#and* Garlic Mustard. It is growing 6 inches a night I swear.
Soon it will be warm enough to stay in our gardens and enjoy Mother Nature and try to forget all the CRAP going on in our world.
Happy Spring Gardening,
[email protected] 519 596 2389