Plant Health, Care and Protection: Removing Pests and Plant Disease

Whether you like it or not, and whichever type of garden you’re growing, your plants are bound to attract damaging pests at some point. If you don’t try and get ahead of it, your beloved plants may even get a horrific disease or two. But don’t worry! With decades and decades of research and study by gardening experts, we are light years away from doing the ancient method of experimentation with plant care and pest control.

Today, we have developed plenty of solutions to pest problems and quick fixes to plant disease, and it’s not odd to see shelves upon shelves of pesticides and bug sprays when you go to supermarkets and grocery shops. However, there has been a fairly recent trend of more organic ways of protecting your plants from pests and curing them of unwanted diseases – also known as “going green”. These organic pest control strategies have been gaining popularity in the worlds of gardening and floristry, and for good reason – they are much more budget-friendly and get you healthier plants than artificial chemicals and solutions ever would.

In this post, we explore three important elements of plant health, care and protection with an emphasis on organic methods and which of these techniques are practical for your garden. First, we go over a couple of basic tips of keeping your garden healthy and filled with nutrition from the time you choose your seeds and buds, until you harvest their produce and seeds. Next, we discuss the best pesticides to defend your plants from annoying, destructive bugs and insects, with specific solutions for pesky weeds the most common pests. Lastly, we learn about using particular flowers and plants to repel pests, another effective and organic way of pest control that doesn’t involve chemicals that could harm your garden over time.

If you are interested in a formal program or want to get certified as a specialist on all things about gardening, we recommend looking into professional bodies and schools in gardening and floristry such as the American Institute of Floral Designers of the AIFD (www.aifd.org), the National Gardening Organization (www.garden.org), the American Floral Endowment (www.endowment.org), the American Horticultural Society (www.ahsgardening.org) and other similar organizations offering courses specializing in floristry and horticulture.

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From AARP

Raising a Healthy Garden

Take it from the experts – you’re going to want to ensure your plants are healthy and nourished from the minute you plant them as seeds in your garden to the moment they blossom into gorgeous flowers, fragrant herbs, or fresh vegetables. Here are a couple of handy tips for raising a healthy garden. You’ll thank us later!

Inspect your plants closely for rotten roots and bug-infested leaves or stems before you even buy them.

Make sure to use only fully composted waste and mulch to stay away from disease and infection.

Do you homework on which fertilizer best suits your garden and stick to it.

Keep mindful watch of insects in your garden to avoid unwanted infestation.

In the fall season, make sure leaves don’t pile up too much or you’ll get an unequal balance of green and brown materials for your mulch.

Water your plants with the right amount and time intervals.

Late winter is the best time to prune sickly limbs back to healthy, living tissue to prevent further infection or acquire new diseases.

Whatever you do – Avoid. Overcrowding.

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From Stock Photos

Eco-friendly Pest Control and Herbicides

Synthetic pest repellents may be a tempting quick solution for stopping or outright stopping a pest problem, but remember – the more artificial solutions you give your garden, the less nutrients your plants receive from the soil, and ironically, the more vulnerable they will be to plant disease and infections. The basic idea is to keep your garden as diverse as possible, with different varieties of annuals, perennials, bulbs, shrubs and trees, all nestled in the soil with a balanced mix of aged compost and brown and green mulch.

Here is some professional advice on how to protect your beloved garden from weeds, diseases and insects and bugs infesting it.

Weeds

– Stop these annoying things from ever starting up in your yard by fertilizing your new planted plot two to three inches deep with corn gluten and watering it thoroughly.

– If weeds have already sprung in the soil, drench them in a solution of vinegar and a couple drops of liquid soap. Keep neighboring plants and flowers safe from the acidic spray by covering them in newspaper.

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From My Decorative

Diseases

– Give your bed of roses protection from powdery mildew or “black spot” with a special tonic, a mix of 2 tablespoons of baking soda, half a tablespoon of liquid soap in about 2 liters of water.

– A fact not known to most people, chamomile tea is an all-encompassing treatment for fungal diseases. Infuse 16 tea bags or about 2 cups of dried flowers in hot water and use the cooled product to water your infected plants.

– For an easier, less time-consuming solution, dissolve 2 aspirin tablets in 1 quart of water and spray on any plants with black spot, powdery mildew, rust, and other fungal diseases.

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From UMN Extension

Insects

– Usually, blasting small insects like aphids and mites with water will efficiently get them off your plants. For more stubborn bugs, remove them with scotch tape [tm].

– Brew a handful of basil leaves and fragrant herbs (e.g. lavender, rosemary, sage, mint, etc.) and use them to get rid of creepy crawlers.

– For slugs and snails, construct a barrier of thin copper wires to give them a rather discouraging shock and a shallow perimeter of pine needles, coffee grounds, cracked eggshells to make a scratchy border that will throw them off the path.

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From Food and Thought 

Pest-Repellent Flowers and Plants

After talking about the more natural pest control solutions, we now take a look at the list of different plants and flowers that were discovered to have natural resistance against pests and illness. A garden of beautiful blooms or delicious herbs is no easy task and indeed impressive, but these fragrant plants often attract bugs and other insects that will sap them of their nutrients and needless to say, aren’t great for their growth. These useful little beauties of nature not only saves you the time and expense of artificial pest control solutions, but it helps keep a great sense of balance and diversity in your garden, regardless of whether it’s a bed of flowers or a plot of vegetables.

That said, here is a short compilation of organically pest-repellent plants and flowers that keep your garden safe from nasty diseases and bug infestations. Luckily, the majority of these are also beginner-friendly and won’t give you a hard time caring for them.

Marigolds

Chrysanthemums

Dahlias

Sunflowers

Petunias

Borage

Lavender

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From Nitty Gritty Life

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