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Integrated Pest Management — It's not just for the pros anymore

One of the most effective ways to control pests in your garden is through by taking a systematic approach to problem solving. Known as Integrated Pest Management, IPM involves using a number of ecologically sound alternatives to pesticides or herbicides and working with nature to create a healthy ecosystem in your garden.

Prevention is the first step in pest control, and it translates into good housekeeping:

  • Eliminate wet areas that provide pests with water, such as leaky pipes, damp basement areas and standing water
  • Keep food containers closed, including those containing pet food
  • Dispose of garbage regularly
  • Keep garden tools clean and tidy
  • Seal cracks and crevices to keep pests outside the house
  • Remove infected plant material from your garden
  • Separate plants by an appropriate distance so they don't compete with each other and prevent good air circulation
  • Make sure plants are planted in the correct type of soil
Integrated Pest Management,
(NC)—For many people, time spent in the garden is some of the most enjoyable time spent; a sanctuary from the hustle and bustle of everyday life. However, pests such as ivy, ragweed, thistles, and slugs cause substantial damage to gardens across Canada every year, and can very easily ruin your plants, devour your vegetables, and kill your shrubs.


Some bugs are good

There are bugs that are beneficial to your garden and it is important not to eliminate those that aren't causing damage to your plants. Some bugs are actually predators that keep away pests that are harmful, so look closely to see which insect is doing the damage to your plants. See if you can pick a live bug from a damaged leaf or stem and figure out what it is before you attack it.

Once you determine your pest problem is significant enough to take action, consider all options: tools, naturally-derived alternative products, and conventional pest control products when necessary. When applying a pesticide, use the minimum amount required. To be effective, you must first identify the target pest and choose the right product for the job.

Once you have determined the problem, select a product recommended for your particular pest and spray only infected plants to avoid killing beneficial insects in the garden. Before using any pesticide, read the label and follow the instructions. For more information, check the label for a website or 1-800 helpline.

Safety in the System

Whether made from organic or synthetic ingredients, all pest control products must be tested and registered with Health Canada's Pest Management Regulatory Agency before they are allowed in Canada.

If you have questions about how to solve your pest problem, visit, or ask your favourite lawn and garden specialist.


Article courtesy of:

Toronto, ON, Canada

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DateArticle TitleSource
May 2009  Tips on how to get the perfect lawn 
Mar 2008  Integrated Pest Management 
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