Pesticides are a leading culprit of bee and other pollinators declining. Most of the overuse is by well-meaning home gardeners who may not realize the pursuit of garden perfection is at the cost of links in our ecosystem.
Easy Bug Repellent
Beekeepers use a few drops of dishwashing, or antibacterial, liquid in a spray bottle for most unwanted bugs. Spray again after a rain. If you want to ramp it up, add a few drops of hot sauce. Use glove when applying.
Know Your Bugs
Those caterpillars on milkweed are Monarch butterflies so get to know what are good and bad bugs. Ladybugs, praying mantis and parasitic wasps are all good friends in the garden.
Use Your Hands
Hand-picking bugs off plants also works well. Wear gloves if you don’t want to touch them and enjoy the time you get to spend outdoors doing it.
Companion planting is another technique that works well to reduce bugs in your garden. Some plants are a natural bug deterrent such as marigolds, and basil.
Hang Bird Houses
Birds are bug eaters so add a few bird houses to your property to encourage birds to nest and patrol your property.