Spring comes, and gardeners have more work, and with the onset of heat changes in the garden occur rapidly. On plants that were sleeping yesterday, buds are already beginning to swell, everything literally comes to life. After the long winter, it can not but rejoice. But along with the garden come to life and its problems - insect pests and pathogens. Weevils, blossom weevils, aphids, moniliosis, scabies, powdery mildew - a long list, but I think you know them by sight. How to make sure that in the garden of these unwelcome guests was not or at least was less?
There are different ways to achieve this goal, but perhaps the most simple and popular is the spraying of gardens with effective chemicals. Of course, I am aware of the harm that these products can cause to the environment, animals and us, but still... How many are willing to give them up? Here, in my opinion, the situation here is about the same as with mineral fertilizers. One can argue about it for a long time, but for many it is simple and effective, the main thing is to apply "wisely". So, when and with what to spray in the spring to be "with reason"?
When to start spraying the garden against pests and diseases?
The first thing to understand is that you are unlikely to solve the problem with a single spraying. After all, all the "problems" wake up not only in your garden, but also in the neighborhood. Get rid of at yourself for a short time, but the breeze will bring a new portion of both pests and diseases. Therefore, it is worth spraying 4 times in spring. It is worth to start fighting immediately with the onset of the first warm days (it varies from region to region and specific dates are meaningless to name). If you miss the first moment, and all this "filth" will start to sprawl and spread throughout the garden, then it will be harder to fight it. And now specifically.
The first spring spraying - the most important
In my opinion, the first spraying of the garden is the most important, and it is necessary to do it. It is done in early spring before the buds start to swell up on the plants, when the average daily temperature is about +4. At this moment, the tree is still sleeping, just as overwintered pests and disease spores sleep. And you can use preparations of fairly strong concentration, without fear of causing damage to plants.
But you should look closely to different plants, not all of them are in the same phase. For example, if the apple tree is still asleep, the black currant has already swollen buds and strong solutions can harm it, simply burn. So we approach the first spraying very carefully.
What to use? Classic, a hundred years already popular solution - "Bordeaux liquid". It is a mixture of two aqueous solutions of lime and copper sulfate. Someone prepares it himself (and you need to do it right), someone buys in a garden store ready-made set for preparation ("Bordeaux mixture"). For the first spring spraying you should use 3% Bordeaux liquid.
You can use iron vitriol, diluting it in water (300-500 grams per 10 liters). What does the concentration depend on? On the degree of infestation of your garden. If the infection is weak enough and 300 grams per bucket of water, with clearly diseased garden is better to dissolve 500 grams.
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Some gardeners for the first spring spraying use the good old "Nitrofen". Do this, in my opinion, is not worth it. It is "kind" in the sense of its effectiveness, but not "kind" to our health.
Much more interesting is the recently popular concentrated solution of urea (urea). Take about 700 grams of urea per 10 liters of water. You can also add 50 g of copper sulfate. Such a solution is effective against overwintered pests, and against spores of many diseases.
This solution has two additional "bonuses". On the one hand, it slows down a little the vegetation (7-10 days), which can save flowers from spring frosts. And on the other hand it is a nitrogen fertilizer, which is exactly what our plants need in the spring. Here are such seemingly contradictory and, nevertheless, working properties.
There is a good option - "Preparat 30-in". It is considered safe for us and the environment, because it simply creates a film on the surface of the sprayed plant, and pests have no opportunity to "breathe". But it is worth remembering that it fights insect pests, but not diseases. And it is worth to use it in the gardens which suffer from the pests.
There are also other preparations... When choosing the one or the other the main criterion is whether it is suitable for the early spring and processing at low temperatures (I remind +4 degrees).
The second spraying of gardens in the spring - "on the green cone"
The second spraying is called "spraying on the green cone". Already from the name it is clear that it is carried out after the buds of the plant begin to develop and emerge in the form of green, still tightly curled cones. The unfolding buds become vulnerable to strong solutions, actually, as well as the surviving and revived pests and diseases.
What to use? You can use the same Bordeaux liquid, but in a much lower concentration - 1%. But in my opinion, it is much more effective to use modern preparations, and to prepare from them so-called "tank mixes". Meaning that in one bucket of water, you can mix two different preparations: one for disease control and another for pest control.
For example, you can mix "Horus" (from scab, powdery mildew, moniliosis) and "Actara" or "Decis" (insecticides). There are other options, the main thing is to carefully study the instructions, whether they are suitable for mixing with other preparations and whether there are no restrictions on air temperature. Using preparations in the form of tank mixtures allows you to reduce the number of treatments. Instead of separate control (pest first and disease later), you have one comprehensive treatment. I hope you will do less harm to the environment.
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The third spraying - "on the rosebud"
The third spraying is carried out at the moment of flower buds promotion (they are still closed). As the majority of trees in our gardens have pink buds, this spraying is called "on the pink bud". I will not tell you about it at length. You can apply the same tank mixtures of fungicides and insecticides.
The only remark - buying this or that preparation, pay attention not only to its name, but also to the active substance. Often different manufacturers hide the same thing under different names. And it is desirable to alternate products so that the active ingredient is different so that there would be no addictive effect.
Fourth spring spraying of gardens - after flowering
Fourth spring spraying of gardens is also conducted with tank mixes right after flowering.
Now some, in my opinion, important notes:
- For spring spraying to have an effect they must be done in time, guided not by reference books, Internet resources or tips of video-bloggers, but only on the weather conditions and phases of plant development in your garden.
- To treat with this or that solution it is necessary to treat the plant completely from top to bottom, and by the way it is good to sprinkle also the root zone. If you miss something or are just lazy, it can destroy all your efforts, and the disease will break out again (or the pest).
- If the first spraying often allows treating all plants in the garden simultaneously (they all sleep), then the strong differentiation by development begins further. It is quite possible that by treating the tree "by the rosebud", there will be a tree already in bloom next to it, and therefore, you can no longer treat it.
- Try to agree with the neighbors around you on simultaneous treatments, so the effect will be more complete.
- Strive to find and use preparations that are harmless to insect pollinators and animals, and there are some. It is my firm belief that if a drug kills an insect, then it is not harmless to us. They usually recommend the use of goggles and respirators, which I find uncomfortable. I prefer transparent face shields, of course, with a hat and gloves included.
Anything can happen, of course, and perhaps spraying may be needed in summer and autumn, but these, the first four, are, in my opinion, decisive and determining the health of your garden this season.
Good health to you and your garden! And a bountiful harvest!
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