Daily Archives: May 30, 2009

Natural deterrent to aphids

FeverfewBattling with aphids (greenfly) in the garden?  Commercially available insecticides often contain a chemical called pyrethrum which is derived from nature.  Rather than buying bottles of commercially prepared and potentially hazardous chemicals, you can harness the power of nature in deterring greenfly just by some clever planting. 

Feverfew (Tanacetum parthenium) is a pretty daisy-like plant that contains pyrethrins – very similar to the chemicals in commercial sprays.  Plant Feverfew amongst your flowers and it’s presence will deter the little insect marauders. DaisyGolden feverfew is a pretty plant in its own right – as the name suggests its foliage is a yellow/golden colour – and all plants will readily self-seed all over the garden if you allow them to.  (This plant is also used as a traditional herbal remedy for migraine).

BeeWhilst it is possible to make your own insecticidal spray or powder from these plants I wouldn’t advise it as it is toxic to bees. In its plant form it seems to work well enough for me and does no harm to bees.  Some sources claim that it will deter bees from the garden, although I have never found this to be the case and have often seen bees visiting the feverfew flowers.  

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C'est le weekend

Feet of clayThat’s it, we’re at the weekend and the forecast is good, all the way to Monday (and beyond).  I’m going to take full advantage of it and potter around doing gardening tasks, which will have the knock-on effect of making our older cats very happy indeed.  They love it when we’re outside anyway but with the introduction of the ‘newbies’ have spent more time outside, in the garage and in the utility room, rather than run the gauntlet of Kittendom in the main house.  Gardening outside means they get us all to themselves. 

Daisy_1663What will make them even happier is that my husband is filling in the gaps on our pergola with netting.  It makes for a handy temporary ‘cage’ outside our living room, meaning that we can finally fling open the doors again to allow air into the house and give the kittens a safe taste of the outside, without of course being able to run away.  It also gives the olds a chance to saunter nonchalantly around on the outside of the netting, flaunting the glorious freedom that they are able to enjoy!

What about you, got any plans for the weekend?

Garden_9511

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