pest management

  • Follow the trails of slime. Slugs and snails sometimes leave behind glistening paths, enabling gardeners to find where they come from and where they feed. This information helps when trying to control or eradicate the local populations.
    Article

    The Keys to Battling Slugs and Snails

    Silvery trails give them away: snails stalking the garden, using their single foot to glide along. Like footprints, slime trails provide clues to the behavior of these mollusks: where they’re…

  • chilli thrips damage
    How-To

    Pest Alert: Chilli Thrips

    The chilli thrip (Scirtothrips dorsalis) has become a serious problem in Southern California. This is a small insect native to Southeast Asia that has made its way to the United…

  • How-To

    Pest Alert: Kudzu Beetle

    There’s a (relatively) new bug in town, and its favorite hangout is the plant not so affectionately known as “the vine that ate the South”—kudzu (Pueraria montana, Zones 6–10). The…

  • How-To

    How to Be Safe With Bt (Bacillus thuringiensis)

    Bt (Bacillus thuringiensis), a soil-dwelling bacterium, produces proteins that are toxic to certain immature insects. Several types of Bt-based insecticides have been approved for use in organic gardening and farming,…

  • How-To

    How to Manage Pests Sustainably With IPM

    Integrated pest management (IPM) may sound complicated, like something only professionals can do. But this commonsense approach to maintaining garden health is actually something we all can work into our…

  • How-To

    Midsummer 2019 Insect Update

    In the Midwest, gardeners are generally an optimistic lot. If consistent heavy rainfall is the topic of conversation, a typical response is, “At least the weeds are easy to pull!”…

  • How-To

    Emerald Ash Borer Damage and Prevention

    Change happens, especially in nature. The predictable type of change, like the rhythmic cascades of the seasons or caterpillars reinventing themselves as butterflies, are reassuring, even inspiring. But catastrophic changes,…

  • How-To

    Pest Alert: Agave Snout Weevil

    What is an agave snout weevil (Scyphophorus acupunctatus) you ask? We asked the same thing a few months ago when we noticed one of our American century plants (Agave americana,…

  • How-To

    The Fight Against Japanese Beetles

    When summer begins in your garden, whether on the patio or in the landscape, an ecosystem of living organisms brings insects to the front and center. The appearance of Japanese…

  • Design

    Take a Walk on the Wild Side

    I came to gardening through strictly utilitarian desires: the desire to eat and the desire to nest. My first garden was an urban pea patch, which produced a surprisingly abundant…