Preventing Pests From Getting Your Outdoor Grow

    Growing can be a very rewarding hobby but it’s not without challenges. Pests can be a major factor in whether or not your outdoor grow will be successful. Let’s look at various methods of pest prevention such as companion planting, beneficial insects, netting, and more.

    Companion Planting is an excellent way to naturally fend off bugs by creating a polyculture. Polyculture – meaning the plants work together to create a better growing environment.  A polyculture minimizes a lot of risk by attracting predatory insects and can also act as a pesticide due to the chemicals or aromas certain plants give off. Excellent examples of companion plants include Chamomile, Sunflower, Lavender, Marigold, Lemon Balm, and/or Dill.

    Beneficial Insects
    can be deployed onto your garden as a way to try and get rid of non-beneficial insects. Many of these good bugs feed on the bad bugs. Praying Mantis, for example, seem to prefer caterpillars as their bad bug of choice. There are also beneficial parasites, such as ichneumonids (parasitic wasps), who lay their eggs inside caterpillars. The eggs eventually hatch and consume the caterpillar. Beneficial Insects come in a lot of different forms. The target species will dictate what insect or parasite to use and in what stage of life such as eggs, larva, or adults.

    Diatomaceous Earth is another tool you can use against pests in your garden. This type of earth is made up of razor-sharp microscopic pieces of fossil that damage insects when they come in contact with the soil. It’s mainly used to create a barrier for ground-dwelling insects like snails, ants, and slugs. It can be applied wet or dry but when is it’s wet it will not work until it dries again. Always look for food-grade Diatomaceous Earth. Neem Oil can be used to fight against certain insects and fungus and doesn’t harm good bugs. Regular use will suppress spider mites, whiteflies, fungus gnats, and nasty nematode infestations and it won’t harm ladybugs and butterflies, bees, earthworms, and others. Sticky pads can also help catch airborne bugs like gnats. They won’t irradiate the pest problem but it will certainly reduce the number of pests. Netting or fencing can be used as not all pests are bugs. Rabbits and other plant chompers can ruin your outdoor grow plot overnight and don’t forget there is always the quite common case of your dog trampling or doing their business on your plants.

    In addition to everything mentioned, there are sprays and other chemicals that can be used safely. Doktor Doom or Safers Insecticidal Soap will eradicate your entire pest problem with just a few applications. An important recommendation when using sprays or chemicals is to use it during vegetative growth only as you don’t want it to remain on the buds you will be smoking.

    Using a pro pest management program is always beneficial to your crop whether indoors or out and will help you get the most out of your grow. All of the suggestions discussed in this article are available at any Garden Centre.

    41 Cannabis Budtender – Ryan McPhee

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