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Weed Control Sans Chemicals

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Gardening is good for you--but not if you use chemicals. Studies show that exposure to pesticides and herbicides can increase the risk of Parkinson's disease, among other risks. Irksome weeds that relentlessly introduce themselves without welcome into your garden can be controlled without resorting to chemicals..

Gardening is good for you--but not if you use chemicals. Studies show that exposure to pesticides and herbicides can increase the risk of Parkinson's disease, among other risks.

Irksome weeds that relentlessly introduce themselves without welcome into your garden can be controlled without resorting to chemicals. Try these simple steps for a naturally weed-free garden:

  • Cultivate your garden 10 to 14 days before planting. At planting time, hoe the young weed seedlings that have sprouted. Be careful to disturb only the surface of the soil to avoid bringing more weed seeds to the surface. About 10 days after your seeds have sprouted, do another shallow cultivation.

  • Perennial weeds need a patient, persistent approach. As soon as the weed sprouts, dig it up, removing as much of the root as possible. Each time it resprouts, repeat this so that the plant has no opportunity to build up a reserve of food.

  • To keep your garden well weeded, remove any diseased or pest-infested plants and do a good clean-up in the fall. Before you introduce new plants into your garden, check them carefully for diseases or pests.

  • Inspect your garden every few days so that pests or diseases can be dealt with before they become a serious problem. If you do find insect pests pick them off the plant by hand or wash them off with a jet of water.

  • As a last resort you can use natural pest controls such as insecticidal soap, diatomaceous earth, rotenone or natural pyrethrum. Follow the directions on the label and spray at the end of the day as some of these kill beneficial insects such as ladybugs and bees that have all flown home for the evening.



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