A study out of the University of California in Berkeley this week indicates that low doses of a worldwide top-selling weed killer (banned in the EU), Atrazine, can turn male frogs into females. Even the pesticides and herbicides used in a small-scale home garden can have negative effects on the surrounding ecosystem, killing off helpful insects and making their way into your food. In this week's tutorials: safe, natural pest-deterring potions and other tips for a chemical-free garden.
Organic Pest Control
In this video from Howdini, the editor of Organic Gardening Magazine give lots of natural pest-control tips, beginning with the most important: Get over your pest phobia. Many bugs are beneficial to your garden, and the tips in this video will show you how to ward off pests big and small while welcoming birds and beneficial insects.
15 Homemade Organic Gardening Sprays and Concoctions That Actually Work
On Discovery's Planet Green site, find recipes for 15 products meant to deter pests, fungi, and weeds, using benign ingredients such as garlic, pepper, vinegar, and citrus rinds.
From Organic Gardening, this online guide provides some ideas for companion planting: that is, growing two plants that benefit each other side by side. A tomato plant besides a cabbage, for example, will repel the moth larvae that gnaw on the cabbage's leaves.
Learn to keep pests away by attracting their predators. Grinning Planet provides an often-referenced guide to beneficial insects - what they keep away, and what plants you can grow to attract them.