18 Surprisingly Effective Gardening Tricks That Keep Away Pests, Fight Disease And Improve Your Soil
Organic gardeners go to great lengths to keep their plants safe without the use of fertilizers and pesticides. This article presents a couple of tricks with common household substances that can make a gardener’s life easy and keep the plants happy and growing. They may seem odd, but trust us – the measures surely work!
To improve the soil
-Use urine as a fertilizer
The nitrogen content of human urine ensures lush foliage growth and is best for plants like corn. Peeing directly on the plants may scorch them due to the high salt content, but peeing away from the base or collecting and diluting the pee with water is a great way to keep your plants growing.
-Bury your kitchen waste in the garden
Whether you own a compost pile or not is your own choice, but you should know that you can also bury kitchen waste in your garden and make your plants grow. Make foot-deep ditches between rows of veggies and dump the waste in. The soil from the ditch will cover the waste and keep it deposited, so you shouldn’t be worried about odor.
-Weed tea as fertilizer
Make some weed tea to kill the weeds in your garden. Cut the weeds you pulled from the ground and soak them in a tub of water left in the sun. In a couple of days, you will have nitrogen-rich green tea which can be used as a soil fertilizer. Comfrey can be used in the same way to create a powerful fertilizer. You can use the whole plant for tea – its deep roots bring up nutrients from deep within the soil and provide it to other plants.
-Vinegar as a weed killer
Vinegar is an environmentally-friendly and efficient weed killer. Pour some in a spray bottle and apply it on weeds on a sunny day, and they will be gone in just a couple of days! Sprinkle some baking soda afterwards to neutralize the acid.
-Add oyster shells and eggshells to your garden beds
Adding crushed oyster shells as well as eggshells in your garden beds is a great way of keeping your soil healthy. The calcium carbonate in the shells is alkaline, so make sure you use them around plants that require alkaline soil.
-Adjust the pH with wood ash and coffee grounds
If you grow different types of plants in your garden, they surely have different pH. Large-scale soil treatments should keep the pH close to neutral, but spot treatments can make individual plants happy. Wood ash can alkalize asparagus, broccoli, beans and beet soil, while coffee grounds should work around plants such as roses, azaleas and rhododendrons.
To improve the plants’ health
-Play music to your plants
Yes, it might seem strange, but playing music to your plants can have amazing results, according to several biologists. Plants show their affinity to music by growing better, and if the experiments by Dorothy Retallack are true, they even lean towards the source of music when they like it. Plants have been found to prefer classical and jazz music, while hating country and rock music. The DeMorgenzon vineyard in South Africa plays baroque music and Paradiso di Frassina in Tuscany Italy plays selected classical pieces to their grapevines to aid their growth and maturity
-Drive a nail into a tree to make it yield
This is an effective method to make a tree flower. Old apple trees that stopped producing fruit could be persuaded to flower again by driving a nail in them – this is what Indian people do to their coconut trees. Try this trick if your trees aren’t blossoming.
-Improve the fruit set with Epsom salt
Spray your pepper plants with some Epsom salt to make them fruit. The secret lies in the magnesium content which is an important component of chlorophyll. Add 2 tablespoons of Epsom salt in a quart bottle of warm water and spray your peppers with it until they start flowering. You can also sprinkle some Epsom salt around the plants.
-Rusty nails in watering can help fight iron deficiency
Iron is required for proper plant growth. Iron deficiency results in a condition called iron chlorosis, which can be seen in plants with yellow leaves and green stems. Most often the biggest problem is the inability of the plant to absorb iron from the soil which results in the condition. Excess phosphorus or high soil pH are the usual problem for this occurrence. Spraying the plants with iron-rich water can be a quick fix, but a few rusty nails in the watering can provide steady iron supply.
-Coconut water for root development
The inside of coconuts is rich in minerals and can also improve root development. Use coconut water to increase germination of seeds and root development in cuttings.
-Extend the growing season with tubs of water
You can regulate your garden’s microenvironment simply with tubs of water. The sun will warm the water and soil during the day. And, while the soil will quickly cool down overnight, the water will need more time. The tubs of water acting as heat sinks will keep the garden warmer and give your plants more time to grow before winter. This method is suitable for plant tents – cover the tubs with plastic sheets to prevent evaporation.
To fight diseases
-Fight fungal infections with baking soda
Fungal infections are common problems in the garden, but fungicides are so toxic that they kill the plants as well. However, baking soda can act as a cheap and great anti-fungal spray which can be used on any plant. Mix a tablespoon of baking soda in a gallon of warm water and spray the solution on your plants and the soil around them to prevent mildew and other fungal infections.
-Bury some pennies in your garden
This method will keep your plants and soil safe and healthy, preventing numerous fungal infections. Copper is an excellent fungicide which will leach metal to the soil and destroy fungal spores in the process.
For bug control
-Get rid of aphids with soap and water
These critters can colonize your plants quickly as they multiply far too fast to be exterminated. Thankfully, there is a solution – a bar of soap and some water can definitely clear mild infestations. The oil-cutting formula of soaps will remove the wax coating of the aphids, leaving their soft bodies vulnerable to dehydration. Add 2 tablespoons of soap in a gallon of water and mix well, then spray the infested plants with the solution.
-Let Neem protect your plants from pests
Neem oil extract can keep your plants safe from pests by acting as a repellent and preventive. The oil interrupts their feeding as well as the pests’ developmental process, making them unable to multiply. Add a few drops of detergent to a quart of water and mix it with a teaspoon of Neem oil, then spray the mixture on the foliage and soil. Repeat the process every week for best results.
-Bring in some guests to feed on the pests
An army of pests can devastate your garden, but you can keep their numbers under control with the help of some natural enemies. Ladybug beetles and Lacewings can do the job just fine, and to compliment them, you can grow herbs and plants such as yarrow and mint which they love.
-Control ants with borax and honey
Unless they make anthills and tunnels, ants are not a danger to your garden, but their aphid farms can do a lot of damage. Ants have an interest in the pests which suck plant juices and secrete honeydew, which is why they carry them to tender buds and tips of plants where they can multiply. However, you can control the aphids by controlling the ants.
Make a paste of some borax and honey, then apply it on the infested plants and their stems as well. This way the ants will be dehydrated by the borax, and they might carry some of it home which will destroy their colonies.
Source : http://familylifegoals.com/surprising-garden-tricks/?t=THA&W=CC