No one has said it this way, so I will.
There are three integrated subjects: Pests, soil, environment. If you
ignore any of these in considering this year's problems you may be beset
by them again next year.
With regards to the pests, clearly what you've always done has failed or
is failing miserably.
The people you've posed the question to have all given their perspective
and many responses have been quite correct.
They may not answer what you see as the urgency of your situation, but
you would be served better by following up on some of them as part of an
The one consideration I'd like to present with regards to your
particular insect problem is pesticide resistance. If they are
resistant, the only long term practical solutions, are likely organic
With regards to the soil, iron is a micronutrient and unless something
is seriously out of whack with your land, you don't need it. If this
year's analysis says you do, kelp as a soil amendment should answer the
issue with relatively little work and with 60 or so other micronutrients
as part of the package.
If you are going by an analysis done in years gone by, you need a new
In response to your comment about organic matter in the soil I'd like to
say that the healthier the soil, the healthier the plants, the less
tendency for the plants to attract garden pests.
If you've been consistently using both pesticides and herbicides over
the years, your garden's soil has probably lost some or much of the
biodiversity that builds soil, and when you build up the biodiversity
with compost each time you use the poisons, you kill it again.
Right. That's why we try to use as much organic matter in the soil as
possible. Raise our own seedlings or carefully choose well grown, insect
free ones from the Nursery in town. Blood and bone meals are now too costly
for us so we switched to 10-10-10, surfer and Ironite. The west garden, like
the other two, had lush beautiful plants until the WF and SPs infested them!
Which organic ones since Pyrethrum and the hort' oils don't work.
It's needed because the natural high calcium, the high PH prevents plants
from obtaining it. This is a poor limestone clay soil I have to work with.
It's naturally poor in nutrients and high in PH and calcium. That's another
reason I stopped using the bone meal for phosphorus and woodash for potash.
These organic products were adding to the problem. The cost of blood meal
for nitrogen put it out of reach now.
I just had a new one. Everything was fine again this time but nitrogen. They
recommended 5 lbs of Ammonium Nitrate per 1000 sq. ft. of garden or 1 to 1.5
lbs per 100ft of row. I was happy to see the PH at 7. We have no idea what
that would be in an organic product.
I've heard that since the 1960s and haven't found it to be true. Insects and
bugs will attack any plant they find that's part of their food preferences,
be it healthy or sickly and stressed. To them it's FOOD or part of their
reproductive cycle. That healthy squash will be as quickly infested by SVBs
as the sickly one in your neighbor's yard. That gorgeous Impatiens will be
as infested with spider mites as that half dead one on your friend's porch.
Insects and bugs don't discriminate and have no immunity to infestation.
There was no poisons in that garden. Why would I waste time and scarce
money spraying a new garden plot that never had a problem before and just
laid fallow for 2 years? It was gardened for one season, laid fallow for two
due to my accident, and planted this spring. I must have already posted this
10 times already. The two older gardens became infested AFTER the new
one,... but not with SPs, just the WF. One of the old gardens is now
totally infested with WF. The organic sprays were useless in that garden
i'm sure that any reputable garden center can and will get greensand for
you. if you local home depot walmart and lowes don't have it, that is all
the more reason to demand it.
you don't say where you are from, in my state CT the local NOFA has an
annual sale you can also try peaceful valley if you are in CA
www.groworganic.com or Fedco seeds in ME www.fedcoseeds.com should have it.
Actually, as my nephew is fond of saying, that's not correct. Garden
centers generally have to order a set amount of a product, so they're
not going to order a pallet of greensand if they don't feel like
there's a market for it in their area. I've had a very, very
difficult time getting organic products since my favorite nursery
owners retired. I actually ordered 15 5 lb bags of my favorite organic
tomato and pepper fertilizer last year because none of the local
garden centers and nurseries would order it. I figure I got about a 4
or 5 year supply for my garden and my sister's. I had to call almost
every garden center and nursery in the yellow pages before I found one
that carried a good quality potting soil that has no fertilizer in it.
I was very interested in trying some of the Pro-Mix products, and we
even have a wholesale distributor locally; but I couldn't get any of
the nurseries to get some for me. The cost of shipping makes ordering
it on the web prohibitive.
"Maybe you'd like to ask the Wizard for a heart."
"ElissaAnn" < firstname.lastname@example.org>
If iron is such a scarce mineral, chances are it is scarce for others as
well. You say I am incorrect. How do YOU know there is no market?
the dealers and apparently the buyers too have been duped into thinking that
the only market that exists is for quick fixes. a reputable garden center
would educate it's consumers.
On Tue, 19 Aug 2008 20:32:20 -0400, "polecanoe"
<egregious top posting corrected, as is only civilized>
My, but haven't the sensitive lettle fleurs sprouted in my
Whether you or I think there is a market is irrelevant. Whether
nursery or garden center owners do or don't think there is, or
choose an alternative to either greensand or Ironite is their
prerogative. Those who know their market on both ends stay in
business, those who misjudge it don't. Insisting that they'll
indulge the whims of every single customer is just plain silly.
Ah, I see the problem. You're defining "reputable garden center"
as only those garden centers who adopt business practices
approved by polecanoe. My definition is a bit broader.
I've had a very, very
You have proven yourself to be the most malicious,
classless person that I've encountered in years.
I doubt that, though organic supplies are often more difficult to find.
It simply requires a little more searching.
Have you called these people? They seem to be in your neck of the woods:
Dicken's Supply, 814 Cherokee Ave., Nashville, TN 37207 (615) 227-1111
Here's another company I purchase from.
5116 Williamsburg Rd, Brentwood, Tennessee 37027
Give Eric a jingle, he'll treat you dandy.
(800) 441-BUGS (2847)
You need to find a feed mill that handles grain and livestock feed. A
50lb sack of cotton seed meal $13.75. About the same price for alfalfa meal
and close to the same for a 50lb sack of Fertrell green sand. Though I'm
still looking for an inexpensive local source for 50lb sacks of feather meal
and blood meal. I imagine I could order from the dealer I buy the green sand
from, though I haven't tried.
It certainly is more difficult if the land doesn't produce the needed
"Steve Young" <bowtieATbrightdslDOTnet> wrote in message
I never heard of them. I'm about 30 miles from Nashville and don't shop
there. I'll call them in the morning and see what their prices are like. I
would need enough for say a 900 sq ft garden. I don't see greensand listed
That's quite a distance from here. I don't see soil amendments at the site.
A 50 lbs sack of any of these products wouldn't go anywhere in my gardens.
I'd need at least 8 to10 50 lb sacks to make a difference @ $13.75 each.
How large is your garden BTW?
Aside from the house and gardens, it's all lawn and woods.
Put together your seasonal needs and make one trip? Perhaps they have a
truck that makes local deliveries? Maybe an employee lives down the street
from you? Get creative instead whining and saying it can't be done. Most
importantly, did you call them?
Adjust your glasses Marie, it's item #6 from the top of soil amendments.
What did they say when you called?
How about 'soil care'? close enough?
Were you fibbing when you said 900 sq ft above? Methinks you are using
these products incorrectly. They are side dressings and mixed only in the
root zone when planting, or scratched into the ground around the plant
during the growing season. They are not used like spreading fertilizer on
Why give weeds a boost? Eventually they will improve all your garden soil.
Did you look up a few grain elevators/feed mills as I had suggested? Or were
you hoping I'd do that for you?
Just a tad under 3,000 square and I use less than $100 of sack products per
season. I don't know why you insist on doing things the expensive way.
Lawn and woods, wow! what a great place to gather organic material. Do you
have leaves that fall? I pull this behind my yard tractor and easily gather
enough material to turn out 12 yards of compost annually.
"Steve Young" <bowtieATbrightdslDOTnet> wrote in message
OK, I looked and they have a place closer to were I live. About 10 miles
from here. I pass there every other week. :-)
No, our out of town company just left about 45 minutes ago. We weren't home
most of the day.
I'm nowhere near Brentwood. That town is known as "millionaires row."
Median Income: $126,800.00. Average home $500,000. I'll check out the
Together, the three gardens come to close to 1000 sq. ft. We're enlarging
two of them next summer, rock allowing.
Methinks you are using
I'll see what the place closer to me gets.
Yep! The closest one, Co-op, is about 30 miles from here. We have to go
there next week for the 5 lbs of Ammonium Nitrate the Soil Test showed was
needed. I have no idea how much organic amendments would be the equivalent
of 5 lbs of that stuff.
How much Greensand do I need for gardens that come to 1000 sq. ft?
We do! Loads of it but it's never enough. It vanishes into the clay soil
like nothing by fall. That's why we're now getting loads from the City mulch
site. All the free mulch you can cart away. They grind and shred fallen
trees and brush and other plant debris. We already got 2 loads. :-))
My husband has a leaf-vac of the "same brand" (pulled by a large mower) but
a different model. He picks up all the fallen leaves and has for years. He
had another one before this one, but it was too small. We dump them on the
gardens to rot down over the winter with kitchen waste, weeds etc. In
spring we start tilling the rotted leaves under. We do it twice and
something I do it a third time by hand with a spade shovel. Despite the
impression some have here we don't use insecticides unless there is a real
problem organics fail to handle... like the WF and SP invasion this year.
I think one of your problems may be you are tilling too much. That alone will
lead to increased loss of organic matter in the soil.
I never even do any tillage (and for me, that's gentle forking) of the soil
adding organic material.
The only upside of sandy soil is that once broken into cultivation, it's easy to
I've created enough of an oasis of fertility that we found (when digging for
the second row of raspberries a few year back) that a neighbor's tree had
managed to send one large root over 50 feet straight for the vegetable
Pat in Plymouth MI ('someplace.net' is comcast)
Tilling too much or too little has no effect on insect pests. The recent
soil test showed plenty of organic matter. OM isn't the problem. Resistant
insects and spiders are. Pests are becoming resistant to everything we're
throwing at them.
Then you don't have the heavy poor fine clay soil we do.
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