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Home Improvement  /  January 6, 2021

How to Keep Pests Away from Your Landscape

When winter comes, frost may not be the reason for your garden’s failure to thrive. Pests invading your lawn are also likely culprits. Rodents, insects, worms and other critters may sneak under your plants for warmth and shelter. Some of them even use your plants for food. These pests are especially troublesome if you have a backyard farm. The produce you should’ve been using for your own food or profit gets ruined by large bite marks and rot.

If you want your plants to survive every season, you need to protect them from pests. Even if you think your landscape isn’t vulnerable to them, you don’t want to get blindsided by a sudden infestation.

Here’s how you can deal with and prevent pests from taking over your landscape.

Inspect Your Gardens for Signs of Pests

Before devising a pest prevention plan, you need to know what you’re dealing with. Assess the damage on your plants and soil and look for clues as to what kind of pest is rummaging through them. Aphids, which are tiny, soft-bodied insects that feed on plant sap, often leave honeydew, which encourages sooty mold to grow.

If you see large bite marks on your crops and leaves, you may be dealing with larger pests like gophers, groundhogs, mice, mole rats, and more. If you identify holes and small bite marks, you could be dealing with beetles and worms.

Grow Plants They Hate

If you want to prevent pest problems, the best thing you can do is grow insect-repelling plants. These emit scents that bugs absolutely hate.

Here are a few examples:

  • Basil – House flies and mosquitoes hate the smell of basil. Plant them around your garden to keep it fly-free when you’re hanging out on the porch.
  • Mint – Mint repels a variety of bugs, including flies, mosquitoes, spiders and ants, among others.
  • Onion and garlic – Want fresh produce while also repelling fleas, beetles, rust flies, aphids and other bugs? Plant some onion and garlic. The sulfur compounds in these crops help in repelling these pests.

Attract Friendly Critters

If you want to keep pests away while also minimizing the use of chemicals in your garden, team up with the natural predators of those pesky critters. Just make sure your lawn’s irrigation system isn’t as aggressive with sprinkling, so you don’t scare them off.

Here are some animals that keep pests away but also keep your plants unharmed.

  • Frogs and Toads – These amphibians are natural predators of insects, spiders, slugs, and worms. Larger species of toads and frogs can even eat mice and other small animals. They’re relatively harmless to plants and humans, too. Attract them to your garden by leaving a bowl of water on the soil. You could also make a small hut with a hole in the soil and an upside-down clay pot with an opening.
  • Birds – Birds feed on all sorts of insects. You can attract them by erecting a birdhouse with a supply of bird seeds and water. They like eating their prey privately, so having a shed or even a weeping cherry tree that they can rest under is essential. These creatures tend to snack on small fruits. So, if you have berries and tomatoes planted, you may not want to attract them to your yard.

Pests, like squirrels, aphids and beetles, may visit your garden this winter to seek shelter and even food.; You can’t do anything to prevent them from chowing on your shrubs now, but you can always set up your pest prevention plan in the spring. With these effective methods, you’ll have a healthy and clean landscape all-year-long.

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