Campus News

Practice integrated pest control

Many home landscapers and gardeners see pests eating their azaleas or tomatoes and immediately grab a chemical pesticide for defense. Tim Daly, a Cooperative Extension agent in Gwinnett County, said using a combination of pest control methods is a better option for your plants and the environment Use chemical pesticides as a last resort, said Daly, who offers these tips:
• Prune plant material away from structures at least 12 to 18 inches and prevent vines from growing on the sides of them to keep insect pests to a minimum inside homes and businesses.
• Pull mulch 18 inches away from the foundation.
• Don’t allow pet food to sit outside overnight. It can attract raccoons, rodents or other animals.
• Select plants with pest resistance to discourage landscape pests.
• Don’t over fertilize.
• Too much water can create disease problems like root rot.
• Routinely monitor lawns and gardens to detect pests while they are in their early stages.
• Select the right pesticide for the problem and read label instructions carefully before usage.