Thursday, July 1, 2010

Organic Pesticide

We have some new friends in our garden.

I noticed the first one clinging to our breezeway window screen, looking at me like "Wuz up?" everytime I walked outside. Then, there was another on my patio plants.
When I watered my garden after having been on vacation for 2 weeks, they started rising up the stalks and branches, conjuring up images of a locust-infested Egypt. There were a LOT of them.

Normally, I'd be really excited about seeing one of these, and very excited about spotting 50 in such a small yard. But, they are feasting on my sad little remnant garden that's weathered a dry summer, my 2 week absence, and a recent weird deluge.

Remember how I declared there would be tomatoes? Well, there won't with these guys around.


I don't think I'd be a very good farmer.

I remember a little neighbor girl squishing one once, saying an unemotional, "They ruin our garden."

She'll be a good farmer.

I can't kill a grasshopper. My grandparents still tease me about the time I was 4 or 5 and begged my grandfather to let a cockroach go in the street, rather than kill it.

My other option, then, is to make a repellant. The first recipe I found online required a 24 hour steeping time. Then there was the whole "What about my ladybugs and bees?" issue to consider.
Like Scarlet I said I'd think about that tomorrow and just do something about the ones I saw in front of me. So my son and I hatched a plan.


(365 Day 175 Photo)

That's right: Operation Capture and Release

He held the bug box while I caught them and slipped them in quickly so the others wouldn't push out. It took quite a while, and we probably put too many in that small space. Looking through the magnified top, I think my son was getting a little weirded out by the increasing buzz and numbers.

When I caught all that I could find, I'm embarrassed to say, we got in the car and drove miles down a country road, where there was plenty of green food, and dumped them out. I know they migrate, sort of like birds, but I figured I'd taken care of this little group and had time to prepare for the next swarm.

When I finished the day's work, I never did get that spray made.
And guess who was hanging out by my backdoor to greet me the next morning?



So, on my step-mother's advice (she had a big organic garden before organic gardening was cool) I'm doing this:


Organic Bug Repellant-
blend 1 - 2 Tablespoons cayenne pepper with 1 Cup water in blender
strain thru a coffee filter,
pour strained cayenne mixture into empty spray bottle,
fill almost to top with water
add 1/4 cup dish liquid (to help it adhere to plants/also deters bugs)
swish it around and it's ready to go immediately


and if this doesn't work, maybe God's trying to tell me something.

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