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Create a Garden to Attract Beneficial Insects

Create a Garden to Attract Beneficial Insects

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To encourage high beneficial insect populations design your garden to incorporate a variety of flowering plants rich in nectar and pollen.  Choose cultivars with easily accessible pollen found in plants with a single layer of petals or a tubular flower form.  Common herbs, wildflowers, and scented plants are all attractive to beneficial insects.  Do not clear out dead foliage in the fall, this is an important habitat for beneficial over…

soil test

Work on the Down Low to Improve What’s on Top

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Horticulturists agree that time spent improving what is happening below the surface of a lawn greatly reduces the time needed to maintain what is on top of it.  The ideal soil for grass meets five requirements: 1) it is slightly acidic; 2) it contains an adequate supply of nutrients; 3) it allows for deep root growth; 4) it supports a thriving population of beneficial microbes, and 5) it retains adequate…

What to Wear For Pest & Weed Control

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Whether you’re using insecticides and herbicides derived from botanical, biological, or synthetic materials, take all basic precautions, including the use of goggles, disposable dust masks (for pesticide dusts), and tight-fitting respirators when using liquid sprays.  Use National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) approved respirators containing activated charcoal cartridges that filter pesticide vapors from the air. Read all product labels thoroughly, and apply the products with great care.  Completely…

Amend soil

What is a Soil Amendment?

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Adding a soil amendment, also called a soil conditioner, helps improve plant growth and health.  The type of amendment or amendments added depends on the current soil composition, the climate, and the type of plant.  Some of the various amendments include: Lime (makes soil less acidic) Fertilizers for plant nutrients (i.e. manure, peat, or compost) Materials for water retention (i.e. clay, shredded bark, or vermiculite) Gypsum (releases nutrients and improves…

Underground pests - Japanese Beetle

Integrated Pest Management (IPM), an Eco-Friendly Approach

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How Should I Manage the Bugs in My Lawn? Too often, when insects are spotted, they are instantly seen as invaders that must be attacked with various toxic chemicals. While such actions may take care of the immediate problem, they usually create a host of others in their wake. Today, an ecologically sound concept called Integrated Pest Management (IPM) is receiving serious recognition and support among home gardeners, professional landscapers,…