Friday, August 28, 2015

Saving your garden.

Maybe. The weather has been unusual for much of the United States and part of the world. If you're trying to garden, it can be disheartening to watch the rain drown your plants or the hail strip the leaves or the sun burn it up. With all of that comes pests and lots of them. Insects and slugs tend to attack plants that are not as healthy as they could be, so plants that have been stressed by the weather seem to attract all kinds.

First on the defense (or offense, if yours hasn't been attacked yet), is a spray made of dish soap and water. Use from one to several teaspoons of dish soap to a gallon of water and spray the plants thoroughly, under the leaves, too. Start with one teaspoon and if that doesn't seem to work, use two and then three or more.

If that isn't working, go to a hot spray made from a couple of cloves of garlic, a small onion and a tablespoon of hot pepper flakes or liquid pepper. Use the hottest you can find. Pulverize or blend the onion and garlic, then add the pepper and mix well. Put it all in a gallon of water and spray the dickens out of your plants.

If it isn't raining where you are (or won't be likely to in the next 48 hours or so, use diatomaceous earth. DE is the skeletal remains of diatoms, with sharp edges. It's so tiny that it looks and feels like powder, but it will kill bugs, slugs and snails. Animals won't be affected by it. Use a dust mask when you apply it, to keep from breathing it in because it could abrade the lining of your lungs or bronchial tubes.

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