Saturday, February 21, 2015

Pests

I was strongly against using pesticides in our garden. I became a broken record when Joel would bring it up. I'd repeat, "What is the point of having a garden if we are going to put the same poisons in it that are in our store bought vegetables?" I was very stubborn on this point, especially since we were able to score some heritage seedlings. I was high and mighty about this until something started eating our squash and zucchini. 



We somehow invited a vine-bore to start killing our precious plants from the inside out. Once this happened, I began listening to the men in my life. 

There is an organic pesticide called Diatomaceous Earth. This is a powder that you can sprinkle on your plants and it gets under the exoskeleton of beetles like the vine-bore. It's kills the bores without poisoning your plants. You can eat this stuff. In fact, according to a skin care specialist I know, she eats a little bit everyday. We used this for a while and felt good about it,then we started attracting the cabbage moth. We planted cabbage,
 broccoli, cauliflower in our fall crop which brought in these beautiful, dancing, white moths of death. Once this happened, I was ready to try something synthetic. 



Joel's dad helped me to understand more about pesticides. The trouble with buying vegetables and fruits from the grocery store is that these plants have pesticides encoded in their DNA and they are sprayed with pesticides. There is no way to wash that stuff off. If you use pesticides in your garden and you are tending heritage plants, you are able to wash a lot of the pesticide off when you harvest your food. That made me feel better.



In the end, we settled on a product called Sevin Dust. You can do your own research, but this product has upset the organic world because it kills all bugs that come in contact with your plants. Obviously, that is a serious problem when you need bees and butterflies to pollinate your plants. However, my father-in-law is using this pesticide and he supports 4 healthy beehives in the same garden. He hasn't noticed a negative impact on his hives or in his yard so we felt pretty good about going for the Sevin Dust. It is up to you, but this is how it evolved for us. We use pesticides sparingly and they have saved our crop this fall.