Greenhouse Gardener? Here’s how to keep pests away
Are you a greenhouse gardener? If you love gardening and making the most of the growing season where your home is based, then you also want to optimise your growing environment. Keeping pests away is important so that your seedlings have a chance to reach maturity and produce a great crop of flowers, fruit and vegetables.
How to Keep Pests Out of Your Greenhouse
Greenhouses are a great way to grow fruit, vegetables and tender plants that require regulated climatic conditions. In this way, you have access to longer growing seasons, weather protection, and more plant options. However, a greenhouse can be expensive to build and maintain. So how would you feel if nasty pests destroyed all the efforts you put into your greenhouse?
Top Tips for Healthy Greenhouse Gardening
While greenhouses offer pest protection compared to normal gardens, you also have a role to play. In this article, we examine tips to help you ensure your greenhouse is not invaded by pests, and for more help, hire a pro like those at District Wildlife Solutions.
Proper greenhouse cleanliness
This is arguably the most important rule. For starters, ensure that you empty and clean your greenhouse annually. This involves hosing the floors, washing down surfaces like the windows, and cleaning the pots. Doing so ensures that you start each planting season pest-free.
Regular garden maintenance also involves clearing plant debris out of your greenhouse. But also, ensure that the area around your greenhouse is free from plant debris as well. Garden debris can harbour bugs and other pests, which may find their way into your greenhouse with just a slight carelessness on your path.
Plant inspection before entry
Before you bring any plant into your greenhouse, you have to ensure that it is free from bugs and other insects. Failure to do so might result in you bringing in pests with your own hands. The warm temperature of the greenhouse aids in the proliferation of these bugs, compounding your infestation problem.
Regular plant inspections
Even if you have a pest invasion, it’s always best to find out about it sooner rather than later. By carefully inspecting your crops, leaves, and flowers, you quickly detect signs of insects. You may even sight squirrel nests, suggesting the presence of squirrels. Early detection helps ensure you take control of the situation before the damage done becomes irreversible.
What’s more, regular inspections also help you discover dead animals like dead snails and rodents. Dead animals are a breeding ground for several bacteria and they invite insects, as well as scavengers. That’s why you need to find and get rid of the carcass as soon as possible. Learn how to properly remove a dead animal here.
Disinfecting your gardening tools
If you use or store your garden tools outside of your greenhouse, then you have to be careful about bringing in foreign pests from those tools. For instance, a spade you used to clear a heap on your yard might have some insects on it. If brought into your greenhouse without first disinfecting the spade, then you risk bringing these pests into your greenhouse. A soak in soapy water should be sufficient to disinfect most tools.
Use biological pest control
Several greenhouse pests like whiteflies, weevil grubs, and spider mites can be controlled biologically. These pests serve as food to some harmless insects. Incorporating these harmless insects into your greenhouse can help keep the population of harmful pests in check. As a concrete example, ladybugs feed on pests like mites and aphids. But more interestingly, they consume pollen and nectar, making them great pollinators.
As a homeowner and keen gardener you will no doubt be ready to take care of the plants living in your property. Checking your plant regularly for pests and taking the organic precautions recommended above can extend the life of your plants and the health of your garden.
FURTHER READING AND GARDENING BLOGS
At Housesitmatch.com we often share practical tips and tools that can help our members. Here are some blogs published earlier that offer more information and advice on gardening.
Home gardening to save money – 7 Top tips
Gardening tips – How to stop insects eating your plants
Home gardening safety tips – Green thumb 101