There’s really no avoiding it: your lawn and garden will always attract weeds and bugs. These scourges of beautiful landscapes can be tough to tackle, which is why so many people turn to pesticides and herbicides like RoundUp and Lawn Guardian.
For those who don’t want to use chemicals on their lawns or flowers, for the people who see a spot of dandelion yellow among their greenery and think “There has to be a better way!” – there are alternatives to pesticides!
Why Not Chemicals?
Pesticides and herbicides might seem like a great idea for their ease, but they can be quite dangerous. Commonly available chemicals can cause adverse health effects if handled improperly, and when you use them, your family can’t spend a lot of time on your lawn. No running barefoot through your thick lawn, no leaving the kids to play. The lawn becomes a no-go zone.
Chemicals also get washed away by the rain, and the runoff carries them into waterways. According to Scientific American, Americans put 75 million pounds of pesticides on their lawns, and these are then ingested by aquatic life like fish, many of which are caught and then consumed by humans.
To protect your family and the environment while keeping your yard lush and green, it’s a great idea to use natural weed and insect killers.
Green Alternatives For Killing Weeds
The greenest solution for getting rid of weeds? Pulling them out by yourself! If it’s still early in the season, tackling the weeds with a spade, gloves, and elbow grease isn’t an unreasonable solution. It’s only when they spread fast that your job gets hard.
Another liquid solution can be made with ingredients right out of your pantry. A concoction of vinegar, liquid soap, and a little salt can attack weeds by drawing out their moisture (the work of the vinegar and salt) and sticking to the leaves rather than getting drawn into the plant (the liquid soap). Use on a warm day and the weeds will wither and die very quickly.
If weed growth in your garden is a consistent problem, you might need to change what your plants grow in. A two-inch layer of mulch will prevent weeds from growing by keeping light away from the soil, which the weeds desperately need for growth.
Green Alternatives for Insecticides
Bugs are a wee bit tougher to deal with than weeds, and not just because they can actually move. Their sheer numbers and aggressive nature can destroy your plants. Your best bet is a set of different sprays that choke and kill off bugs like aphids and various types of grubs and larvae.
You can choke the insects by spraying them with a homemade remedy. Mix up some vegetable oil (a cup) and castile soap (a tablespoon), then add two teaspoons of this to a quart of water. The soap suffocates the bugs similar to how it worked on the weeds – its surface tension really sticks,
To keep bugs from coming in the first place, use a mix of soap and ingredients like pureed garlic or hot chile pepper that have been steeping in water. Spray liberally, and these will repel bugs from making their home in the first place. You can even put in specific plants that attract native predators that eat pests, not your flowers – check out this guide!
If you’re having lawn or garden problems, give Green Ninja a call! We can help you find a solution to weeds that’ll be effective and give you and your family peace of mind!