Help! My garden is dying!
That’s a pretty dramatic statement and it is something I hear every year from exasperated Ottawa homeowners.
If you’ve spent any amount of time in a typical zone 5 climate, by the time mid April rolls around you are ready for warmer days with many hours of sunshine. Those of us who love our flowers and plants hold out hope for the sun filled late spring days to awaken our perennials, trees and shrubs to once again reveal their splendour.
There are steps you can take to ensure your garden looks its best and you do not utter the dreaded phrase that everything seems to be dying. What is even more encouraging is that organic options are cost effective safe and effective.
The spring organic insect and disease treatment and control protocol I recommend consists of preparing a naturally sourced fungicide along with a naturally sourced insecticide. I can’t give away my “secret recipe” but can tell you that whole garden protection is very reasonably priced starting at $125.00. That is very affordable insurance and less than it would cost to purchase and plant a mature 5 or 6 gallon perennial.
Primo Landscaping’s insect and disease control treatment is applied in late April to early May. It helps reduce the number of over wintering insects which have found shelter in your garden areas. The treatment also kills mould and fungal spores which are commonly found in damp areas such as piles of leaves and dead annual flowers left over from the previous year.
If you are a hard core do it yourselfer I will give you some advice on a organic insect and disease treatments you can apply safely yourself. Although I would obviously prefer you call or email us to protect your property, you can safely reduce insect and fungal issues yourself.
If you have pesky insects eating your flowers, perennials or vegetable plants a simple treatment is to get some thick dish soap, the more it resembles the consistency of molasses the better. You will also need a spray bottle. If you don’t have one you can buy one at most hardware or dollar stores. To prepare your homemade insecticidal soap add between 50-100 ml of your dish soap into the spray bottle. Then slowly add lukewarm water to dissolve the mixture. You are now ready to go protect your plants. Spray them fairly liberally with your solution. It is best to apply the soap in the early part of the morning in order to avoid potentially burning leaves. You may reapply the soap frequently as needed as long as you avoid applying it in direct sunlight and during very warm days, a rule of thumb is 28 Celsius or more is too warm.
As far as the homemade fungicide it is one of the easiest home gardener solutions you can use. All you need is a spray bottle and some baking soda aka bicarbonate of soda. The baking soda is a safe and effective fungicide that can be particularly useful in controlling mold and mildew on roses. It can be used for pretty much all flowering trees, shrubs and plants as well. The solution consists of a generous tablespoon of baking soda added to a liter of water in your spray bottle. Once again recommend applying the solution earlier in the day and on days where the temperature does not exceed 28 Celsius. After spraying onto your plants you may notice a mild powdery residue reminiscent of powdery mildew. That is normal and it will go away after you water your plants or the next rain fall.
For more information on any horticultural, gardening or lawn care services please visit our services section or call us at 613.762.1838