Even if you have the world’s greenest thumb, garden pests present a serious challenge for your tomatoes. The truth is, pests like your tomatoes every bit as much as you do and there are a variety of pests that can damage them. If you had a problem managing your garden last year, the West Palm Beach pest control experts at Empire Pest Defense can ensure the area around your garden is kept free of pests likely to harm your beautiful tomatoes.
Methods of Protecting Tomatoes
There are a number of excellent ways to protect your plants from harmful insects that destroy the dreams of many home gardeners each year. Below, we’ll discuss some of the most common ways to protect your crop this year.
- Tomato cages and cones – These protect against cutworms and other insects that access your tomato plant at the base of the stem. They provide a perfect shield around the plant preventing cutworms and other insects from attacking the stems. They also keep out bunnies and rats. Tomato cages and cones are a must-have for tomato gardeners.
- Companion plants that ward off harmful insects – There are certain types of plants that act as a major deterrent to the types of insects that destroy tomatoes every year. These include basil, which wards off flies and mosquitoes. Cabbage, that wards off whiteflies and moths. Collard greens, that ward off beetles. And geraniums, marigolds, and mint. Among these, marigolds are the most effective. They provide the best overall protection from the worst tomato predators.
- Companion plants that attract helpful insects – There are plants that keep tomato killers away and then there are plants that attract the tomato killer’s natural predators. Both can be effective at protecting your tomatoes. These include basil, borage, and parsley.
- Garden pest baits and traps – There are a number of common baits that you can purchase that will prevent many of the most common tomato predators from destroying your luscious tomatoes. These include sticky traps that you can place around your tomatoes that lure tomato-killing insects to their demise using pheromone baits.
- Water regularly – Healthy and well-nourished plants are less of a target for tomato-killing insects as drooping sad tomato plants are. Additionally, the force of the water spray will knock weaker insects from your tomato plants preventing mortal damage
- Insecticides – Insecticides are always an option to safeguard your plants against common insects.
- Add natural predators – While attracting wasps may seem counterintuitive, they provide an excellent means of defending your tomato plants against tomato predators. These wasps will fly around and lay eggs in the body of tomato pests and, then—well you can probably figure out what happens from there. It’s yucky, but your tomatoes won’t be.
Empire Pest Defense Can Help
If you’re worried about your tomato garden this year, a broadscale assault on the types of insects that destroy gardens can help prevent your juicy tomatoes from falling prey to common insects. Empire Pest Defense provides our clients with personalized solutions that ensure their individual needs are met. Talk to us today to set up an appointment.