I told you it was going to be a bad bug year. To be fair, I haven't paid much attention to the garden in the last week. A little watering here and there, but no weeding or anything like that. But still, you'd think it'd take more than a week for this to happen
That was a tomato plant. Over in the potato patch, a few of the plants look like this
But the most concerning is that even the onions are being mowed down. Most insects aren't too interested in onions, but I found plenty of this yesterday
Sedona had a grand time picking off caterpillars and feeding them to the chickens, but clearly, something more drastic needed to be done before we didn't have a garden left at all. I looked back in my old blog posts and found the last time we had an insect problem neem oil was helpful. So I made up a batch (1 tbsp of concentrate in 2 liters of water, but read the directions on the bottle if you decide to use it) and sprayed all the plants in the garden with it. I plan to reapply next weekend and then see where the damage is still popping up. We do have tons and tons of caterpillars (and butterflies, another post is coming up with those) out, so I think that's the main problem right now. I'm dreading the grasshoppers that I know are coming.
One very interesting note is that we have one bed lined in garlic that our renters planted last year. The plants in that bed are untouched. A lot of organic gardening sources suggest making up a spray based on fresh garlic. I've tried it and it didn't work for me. It seems quite plausible this garlic growing at the edge of the bed is protecting the nearby plants from pests though. I think we will likely take this garlic and replant it rather than eat it. Maybe if we line all of the beds, we will have built in pest control.
Anyone else out there facing pest problems yet?