With spring on its way, you may already be thinking about putting your green thumb to use and planting a garden. Backyard gardens are a great family activity, good for exercise, and a perfect way to have fresh fruits and vegetables throughout the summer and fall.
Depending on where you live, you may face a variety of garden insects that will threaten your harvest. They can be difficult to identify, much less get rid of.
The information below covers four common garden pests to keep an eye out for. It also offers some ways to prevent or eradicate them.
Slugs are mollusks that live in shaded spots in your garden. They will eat almost any plant, leaving large holes in leaves. They live almost everywhere but are more common in humid climates.
One way to get rid of slugs is to lure and capture them. You may have heard of beer and water traps. These are effective, but can inadvertently attract other pests to your garden.
A better solution is to put dead parts of plants, including orange peels or broccoli stems, in the garden. Then, use another popular slug-elimination method: sprinkling salt on them.
2. Japanese Beetles
Japanese beetles are small bronze or green insects. They like to chew on all varieties of leaves and flowers.
Japanese beetle larvae, which are little white grubs with light brown heads, feast on the roots of plants. These clandestine creatures can kill off your plants from right under your nose.
One easy way to get rid of Japanese beetles is to spray your plants with a soap and water mixture, or a safe insecticide. To get rid of larvae, you can add nematodes, small worms that live in the soil, or milky spore, a bacteria. It can take several years to build these up in your solid, so be patient.
3. Tomato Hornworms
One of the most well-known garden insects on this list is tomato hornworms. These bright-green grubs will wreak havoc on tomatoes, peppers, potatoes, and eggplants.
Physically removing hornworms is an effective way to get rid of them, but you must be diligent. The soapy water spray solution also is effective at keeping them away.
Cutworms are one-inch larvae that live underneath leaves or in the soil in your garden. Since they feed on plants at night, they can be difficult to see. They often go after the stems of plants.
There are a few ways to eradicate cutworms or keep them from congregating in the first place. First, you can protect your newly-spouted seedlings with some DIY paper roll collars. This will force the worms to move along to more accessible plants.
If cutworms are a recurring annual problem, you might wait a little longer to put sprouted seedlings in the ground. Another easy solution is to use a backpack fogger to eliminate the pests, especially for established infestations.
Learn More About Eradicating Garden Insects
Now that you are aware of some of the most common insects to invade vegetable gardens, you can have the confidence that yours will be safe from harm and thriving going into the summer. Keep garden insects at bay with the tips above, or check out some of our other garden maintenance tips.
We hope you found this information helpful. If so, be sure to take a look at some of our other posts on everything from health and well-being to business, finance, technology, and many other topics.
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