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Discussion in 'Growing Organic Marijuana' started by lighterfields99, Jun 12, 2013.
What is the safest organic pesticide?
I mean safe as in it will not burn the plant when applied.
I don't really have an answer to this question, but I think you would be best off labeling what pests you are attempting to remove, if you're unsure you could always show a picture of what's happening to your plants. It might make it easier for them to help you.
If you're having problems with caterpillars or budworms you can use BT. It's about as mild as you can get IMO. Treating for on the ground pests is easy with diatomacious earth. Things like mites are the hardest to treat. I personally like to use neem oil at the lowest recommended dose, and I spray at night just as the sun's going down. No direct sun on the plants or you risk burning them. Use the neem 3 times in a single week, and repeat each month. Spray 3 times 1 week, then take 3 weeks off. If you have a bad infestation you may need to spray more often, but this should be enough for more growers.
mites are easy mode when you start looking into the effects of essential oils from herbs on cannabis.
Rosemary, Lavender (laitfolia), Peppermint, Basil, Cilantro, and others are very useful in prevention and eradication.
I linked a ton of information in the organic pesticide sticky here, just go to the last page and read.
Other than stuff above the soil line, I rely on certain properties of materials to help establish healthy beneficial soil fauna, which should out compete the "bad guys".
Crab shell meal, neem seed meal, karanja seed meal are wonderful amendments for the source of elements but they really shine when you examine how they interact with the soil fauna. Short story is they help prevent and maintain a healthy population of desirable soil life.
Diatomaceous Earth and a cultured source of bacillus thuringiensis (Gnatrol) for fungus gnat larvae if needed.
I rarely use neem oil as a foliar anymore, I find no need to since the introduction of oils in my grow for mite control once a week. If I ever get a bad infestation I'll up it to every 2/3 days to help break the cycle faster, though I have yet to see any mites in over 6 months of usage.
3 very excellent answers!
Leftleys first to suggest posting what pest you are attempting to eradicate; not all pesticides are meant for all pests (by any means), and not all "organic" pesticides will be safe and not cause burning -
Which brings me to MjMamas suggestion to spray right before lights go out or the sun goes down. Trust me - this is SO important when spraying anything - I've burned the living hell out of my garden because I sprayed during lights on.
I figured I knew better...lol
GiMiK and the essential botanical oils - wow can these be fabulous pesticides! It doesn't take much either - these oils can be strong and very effective.
You won't get much better advice than these 3 posts Lighterfields - lets start with Leftleys advice on pest ID and go from there...
I am trying to prevent/eliminate any threat of spider mites.
I went ahead and picked up some organic neem oil and mixed it at minimum dilution in water.
Also I will no longer be spraying anything during daylight hours.
Are you using an emulsifier? Oil and water won't mix without one - what a mess...
Garlic and capsaicin (hot peppers/chiles) are also options. As is tobacco. Do your research first.
My cousin has had great results with a few drops of habenero hot sauce mixed into water, but I haven't tried it myself. Planting lots of garlic and onions, and mixing neem meal into your soil will help tremendously in future grows.
I've been using fresh mint to kill mites. I take a sprig with 4-6 leaves, put it in a silver bullet blender with some water, aloe vera juice and liquid silica and then puree it. I strain it into my 1 gallon sprayer, add warm water and then spray the plants liberally at lights out.
I use this on flowering plants only and spray 2x a week. For veg, I use a 2x a week application of neem oil.
would the neem oil or whichever pesticide you chose cause harm to mycorrhizae?
You're not adding actual neem oil to your soil - any oil isn't a good additive to soil. Neem meal, however, which contains small amounts of oil is an excellent soil additive, and worms love it too.
I think it depends on what product is in/on your soil. Neem is great for a number of reasons.
Here's a great start to learn about neem.
Aw, jerry beat me to it.
That's the one that persuaded me to further investigate the material I use.
Does it leave any minty taste on the buds? I've always been very weary of spraying anything with a scent (like mint, garlic, rosemary, etc) because the flavor of my meds is a huge part of how well they work for me. Low flavor meds and hash hardly help my condition at all. Whereas a single hit of something stinky like sour diesel will melt my woes away. I think it's got to be something in the turpenes. But I'm very interested in home remedies like you mentioned. I have mint growing already, so that would be handy.
The compounds (secondary metabolites) in mint that create the smell are terpenes that have insecticidal properties. http://sun.ars-grin.gov:8080/npgspub/xsql/duke/plantdisp.xsql?taxon=618
Fortunately, these compounds are broken down (de-constructed) with exposure to light. I personally have used many different varieties of mint as well as lavender, thyme, rosemary and cilantro (a mint) with no distortion of taste or smell. It is really convenient to pluck a sprig of this or that mint and puree it into a slurry and then spray your plants without dropping a lot of $$$.
I've also found that you can make a big batch of the mint slurry and then strain it and freeze it in ice cube trays. A couple of cubes in a 1 liter sprayer works great for a small scale indoor garden. It makes it even easier than whipping out the blender every 3-4 days and making it fresh.
If you really want to put a hurtin' on the spider mites.....look in to getting or growing some epazote. ( also called wormseed, Jesuit's tea, Mexican tea, Paico or Herba Sancti MariÃ¦) It's a culinary herb that's popular in Mexican cooking but is also well known for it's insecticidal properties. There is a commercial product on the market called Requiem that is made from epazote. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dysphania_ambrosioides http://sun.ars-grin.gov:8080/npgspub/xsql/duke/plantdisp.xsql?taxon=618
If I had the room to grow a garden as considerable as yours, I would have several of these different plants growing amongst my trees as companions
That's really great info. Thanks.
^^^ What Mama said. Thanks Chunk.
Chunk, do you have any literature on the effects of airborne "repellency"? Lol, I know, poor expression but I'm tired and lacking the right word for it.
Let me rephrase it this way; Would it be efficient to simply have a few herbs (lavender, rosemary, etc.) situated throughout my indoor op in reference to their insecticidal and fungicidal tendencies? I mean, even though it is only effective on contact in my experience, I was wondering if the dispersal of chemicals could somehow interact with other species; ala that vid on "communication".
Just having a high guy thought, wanted to see how badly off the mark I am with this idea.
Edit; I've used essential oils (steam derived) up to the week before, though I'm quite confidant in stating it shouldn't do anything harmful if applied correctly up to the day before harvest. I have not seen or noticed any significant change from one plant to the other when I did my "tests".
I definitely think that would be beneficial. I planted a ton of garlic and onions around my outdoor garden and I've definitely noticed less pests. If companion gardening helps outdoors, there's no reason it shouldn't work at least as well indoors.
I am subbed as mites are kicking my ass at the moment. I have a pineapple chunk that I will probably hash out the whole plant. I never kew about spraying just before lights out. I am also going to try the mint / aloe
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