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Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Attack the Weeds

Was your weekend wonderful?  Mine was except that our a/c broke Friday night and is not being fixed until this afternoon. That's what happens when something breaks down on a three day weekend. 

I am going to give you a couple of homemade recipes for week killers.  It seems that it is better to have something that is easy, cheap and not made of chemicals.  Take a look.  These are from MSN Money.

The target: Lawn weeds

How to do it: Got weed troubles in your yard? Douse those weeds with a 50/50 mix of vinegar and water, according to The Daily Green. The targeted weeds will be dead within days. This is a good method for attacking unwanted plants with long taproots, such as dandelions, dock and plantain.

Vegetable oil
The target: Soft-bodied insects — aphids, spider mites and caterpillars

How to do it: A little natural oil "just sort of smothers" soft-bodied insects, Bradley says. No need to use your pricey olive oil here; regular vegetable oil will do the trick.

Mix together:
1 tablespoon dishwashing liquid
1 cup vegetable oil

Take just 2.5 teaspoons of the mix and add it to a spray bottle with a cup of water. If you're targeting a small area, "often a cup is all you really need to apply," Bradley says.

For really big jobs, put ¾ cup of the mix in a gallon of water in a backpack sprayer.

A caution: Oils like this can damage some plants — suffocating or "burning" leaves, Bradley says. If you've never used this before, apply a small amount to a few leaves "and wait a day and then go back and see how they look," Bradley says. If they are wilted or look burned, the plant is too sensitive for this concoction.

Hot pepper/garlic spray
The target: Caterpillars, leaf hoppers, spider mites and whiteflies

How to do it: This recipe works by repelling — sometimes even killing — insects with its strong natural compounds. "It's so effective that there are some companies making this," Bradley says.

Here's how to make it. (It's best to devote an old blender to this and other homemade mixtures.):
Put several cloves of garlic and one or two hot peppers, or a few teaspoons of ground cayenne pepper, into the blender.
Add a quart of water. Blend.
Strain the mixture through cheesecloth. Let sit overnight before using. Add a few drops of liquid soap if you'd like; it might help the mixture stick to the plants. But be cautious using soap; it can strip the waxiness from plants — that's why it sticks — and harm them.
When it is ready to apply, don plastic goggles and rubber gloves; the spray can be highly irritating. Use a pump spray bottle available at a garden center.

"You want to get the spray everywhere — even on the underside of the leaves," Bradley says. "If it is not rainy conditions, it might be effective for up to two weeks."

So, go forth and kill those weeds.  Meanwhile....keep it simple and make it real.


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