Homemade Codling Moth Trap with Bugs
Cheap Organic Pest Control for Fruit Trees
By Erin Huffstetler | 04/26/2017 | 7 Comments
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We planted a small orchard in our backyard several years ago (tour my garden here), and it’s finally starting to spring into action. Last year our apricot bushes fruited for the first time, and our apple trees produced their second harvest. This year, it looks like our cherry bushes are going to get in on the action, too They’re flowering now.

It’s pretty exciting to see all of our hard work coming together, but with each stage comes new obstacles. The first year our apricot bushes flowered, there weren’t any bees out to pollinate them, so we built mason bee houses to attract early pollinators to our yard. That worked like a charm, and we had lots of apricots last year. I’m sure the pests that ate them really appreciated our efforts.

Just like the codling moths appreciated our first crop of apples and the birds appreciated our first two crops of grapes. It’s enough to make you want to give up, but we’ve stuck with it, and we’ve found ways to address every one of our pests. Now we bag our grapes to keep the birds off, and we stick codling moth traps out as soon as we spot the first leaves on our apple trees.

This year I’m hoping to build on that success by finding a pest control solution for our apricot bushes and a cheaper pest control solution for our apple trees. Here’s the scoop on what I’m trying.

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Build a Carpenter Bee Trap
How to Build a Carpenter Bee Trap
By Erin Huffstetler | 04/19/2017 | 264 Comments
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I’ve done a lot to attract bees to my garden – planting flowers that they like, building them houses, etc. But carpenter bees? I’m not a fan. They do too much damage to our house, tree house and swing set each year for me to be on good terms with them. I’ve read article after article that says they only go after non-treated, rotting wood, but that hasn’t been my experience at all.

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How to Make Bug Spray
How to Make Bug Spray
By Erin Huffstetler | 06/01/2016 | 3 Comments
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Make your own bug spray, and skip all of the chemicals found in commercial versions. My recipe uses just two natural ingredients.

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Koi Pond
How to Get Rid of Mosquitoes Naturally
By Erin Huffstetler | 07/23/2014 | 5 Comments
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Mosquitoes are annoying, but you know what else is annoying? Most of the advice on how to get rid of them. Do a quick web search for “get rid of mosquitoes” and you’ll get two basic pieces of advice:

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How to Make Bug Repellent Sticks
How to Make Bug Repellent Sticks
By Erin Huffstetler | 05/30/2014 | 16 Comments
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Last weekend, my family went on a camping trip, and it reminded me of a project that I’ve been meaning to get to for a while: turning my bug repellent bars into bug repellent sticks.

I’ve been saving our empty deodorant containers for a while, with the intention of making our own deodorant, but one day while I was storing our empties, it occurred to me that bug repellent in stick form would be genius. It would be faster to apply; you could keep your hands clean; and it would be easy to throw into a bag for trips.

So, that’s just what I made yesterday. This is the same all-natural, no-junk recipe that I shared before, just in a different form. Want to learn how it’s made?

Here are my step-by-step instructions:

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