There are occasions when certain pest and disease problems create havoc in all gardens. Fortunately for organic gardeners there are now plenty of low-toxic products available whose use is permitted under national organic certification.

Off-the-shelf pest and disease control

Organic gardeners aim to grow strong pest resistant plants. They also establish a diverse range of plant species and create natural habitats that support a range of beneficial organisms to help bring about natural pest control. When pest or disease outbreaks do occur, national organic standards permit the use of:

● biological controls using naturally occurring cultured organisms such as Yates Nature’s Way Caterpillar Killer Dipel Bio-insecticide (Bacillus thuringiensis var. Kurstaki)

● copper oxychloride such as Yates Leaf Curl Copper Fungicide

● fruit fly baits in enclosed traps

● exclusion fabrics including cloth and paper fruit fly control bags

● boracic acid for cockroach control

● iron-based products such as those used in organic snail bait

● light mineral oil such as PestOil

● lime products including dolomite, garden lime and agricultural lime

● lime sulfur-based products including Yates Lime Sulfur Spray

● powdered or wettable sulfur

● natural pyrethrum

● plant oils such as vegetable oil, neem and garlic

● potassium permanganate (Condy’s Crystals)

● potassium-based soap sprays such as Natrasoap

● plant-derived products including rotenone as found in Yates Vegetable Derris Dust

● vinegar

● seaweed, seaweed meal and seaweed extracts

● sodium silicate and sodium bicarbonate

● horticultural insect barrier glues and sticky traps

This information is from the Yates Garden Guide: fully revised & updated 44th edition, HarperCollins, $39.99. You can have this information and so much more at your fingertips by purchasing the Yates Garden Guide, available at all leading bookstores and Bunnings stores.

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