Organic pest control methods are generally less environmentally damaging, and less toxic to non-targeted insects, mammals and aquatic life. Unfortunately, in our time-starved world, many people simply want the most potent, one application product—no matter what the consequences.
Pest control strategies in the eco-friendly garden seek to use the least toxic method first. There are some very effective natural control treatments available. The good news is, with the proper preparation, and cultural practices, rarely if ever will you need to get beyond these measures.
The first step in controlling pests, before even applying the most benign treatment is to create the most hospitable growing environment for your plants. A healthy garden is the single best natural pest control there is. Healthy plants are less attractive to pests in the first place, and when they are attacked, the plants are better equipped to defend themselves and recover
An advantage to the “no-spray” method of control is that beneficial insects have the best opportunity to establish populations in your garden and do the work for you. You may need to exercise a little patience and put up with some cosmetic damage initially. But, they are incredibly effective at natural pest control.
With any pest control treatment, the first step should be to identify the offending pest and target a control method that only affects that pest. Don’t apply a non-selective chemical that kills beneficial insects as well! There are a good number of organic options available, and some are more specific to certain pests than others.
If there’s a downside to natural pest control methods, most people would say they are not as fast-acting, and yet can be every bit as effective as synthetic controls over time. To me, that’s an acceptable tradeoff!