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8 ways to cut pesticide use in the garden

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Pests can make your little piece of heaven in the backyard into a nightmare faster than you can say “aphid,” but if you’ve started feeling uneasy about spraying your future salads with pesticides, Denise Ellsworth of the Chicago Tribune has a few tips to reduced your use of chemicals, so your environmental conscience can be as clean as your veggies.

Insect traps: To manage apple maggot on apple trees, sticky, red spheres can be hung in trees. The adult flies are highly attracted to the spheres, which trap and kill them. On the other hand, Japanese beetle traps are not effective, because they draw more insects into the yard, not all of which are killed by the trap.

Manage weeds: Weeds don’t just look unsightly; they also provide places for diseases and insects to survive from season to season. Many weeds are alternate hosts for viral, bacterial and fungal diseases, providing a safe location for pests to winter — even though the weeds may not show symptoms. To keep pests down, mow or remove weeds as much as possible, particularly near vegetable gardens.

Full story at Chicago Tribune.

Tips for better gardening.

Photo credit: Fotolia

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