Organic Gardening Tips

Natural Pest Control

You don't always needs pesticides and other chemicals to eliminate pests from the garden. These tips offer alternative ideas that won't harm the environment.

A toad house is an excellent natural pest repellant.
A toad house is an excellent
natural pest repellent.

  • Add toad houses to the garden to attract toads for natural pest control. Just as fairy-tale toads can be turned into handsome princes with just a kiss, ordinary toads become plant protectors just by hopping into the garden. They may not be pretty, but toads eat plenty of bugs, so you'll be glad to see them.

    To encourage toads to come to live in your garden, try the following: 1) Put several broken clay pots in the garden for toads to hide under. 2) Water when the ground gets dry to keep the environment pleasant for amphibians. 3) Avoid spraying toxic chemicals on the garden. 4) Watch out for toads when tilling, hoeing, or shoveling.

  • Use organic repellents to chase away rodents and deer. Sprays made out of hot peppers, coyote or bobcat urine, rotten eggs, bonemeal, or bloodmeal -- even castor oil -- can make your garden plants unappetizing to herbivores. Reapply the repellents frequently, and always after rain, to maintain high protection levels.

  • Grow French or American marigolds to kill any nematodes in the garden soil. Nematodes -- microscopic wormlike pests that can damage tomatoes, potatoes, and other crops -- are killed by chemicals that are released by marigold roots and decaying foliage. You can plant marigolds in and around other nematode-susceptible plants. Or just till marigolds into the soil and let them decay before planting potatoes or tomatoes.
  • Organic gardening can be great for you and for the environment. Follow the tips outlined here, and you'll be well on your way to a healthy garden.

    Want more gardening tips? Try:

    • Gardening Tips: Learn great helpful hints for all of your gardening needs.
    • Annuals: Plant these beauties in your garden.
    • Perennials: Choose great plants that will return year after year.
    • Gardening: Discover how to garden.