Gardening organically has become popular, but how many gardeners truly understand this method of cultivation?
I’m often asked which plant to grow to keep away whatever pest, but this kind of garden practice goes hand-in-hand with organic concepts, which means not using chemicals.
Deterring pests won’t be achieved by planting one specimen.
For example: one chive plant near the roses, which won’t deter aphids (which are prevalent at this time of year) – they will need to be mass planted to see any positive results.
Bees are all important in an organic garden, but even the safest of sprays such as pyrethrum could be harmful to bees.
Always spray late in the afternoon when bees have hopefully gone to bed. Do this even with eco-friendly sprays.
Grow a mass of lavender under fruit trees – this not only repels insects but will attract bees to pollinate the fruit blossom.
One of the most popular herbs grown is basil – this sweet smelling herb is reported to repel most insects.
I must emphasise again that quantity is needed, although a large pot of sweet basil near a doorway could discourage pesky summer flies.
It is interesting to note that many insect repellent plants are also those herbs most favoured for cooking, which does confirm that it’s their strong aroma that repels insects.
Dill is a great example, not only attracting bees but also helping to repel spider mites and white cabbage moths.
Update: during the next week or two, begin preparing beds for summer flowers. Christmas displays should be bedded eight weeks before, which is approximately 30 October.
Gardens should be well mulched, fed with cow manure, and left a week or two before planting.
Traditionalists could plant red salvia, bordered with red and white petunias.
- After climbing roses have finished flowering, if necessary, they can be pruned then.
- Plant tropical fruit trees.
- Give potted plants a boost with Green Flourish.
- Mulch the surface roots of camellias and azaleas with peat moss.
- Lawns are desperate for a good drink, as are deciduous tees.