cross-posting: Anyone up for Experimental Organics?
Hi, everyone. I am doing a poll on who is going to be doing Organic experiments for 2010, LOL! I posted an identical post at a wonderful site in England so that we can do a cross-comparison. It seems so far, however, that Americans are the ones going hog wild with all kinds of homemade recipes so far, LOL! Here is what I wrote on the English rose site:
I thought this would be a fun post for those who are up for experiments with organics and how their garden is progressing with those organics....Sometimes with organics we have to a test-and-try whenever we hear about certain organic remedies. We have to figure out is this really hearsay, personal anecdote, what works and what doesn't in our particular organic garden.
There are two main things which people drive people crazy---blackspot and insects.
My friend Jim and I have heard a couple of hearsay methods and am willing to give it a spin for the year 2010.
My experiment with blackspot is this...using a foliar feed of fish emulsion oils with Greencure (potassium bicarbonate) all mixed in together and seeing how well the buffer works. Again this may only lessen blackspot about 45%-70%. My application will begin tomorrow. Last year I only used Greencure. My roses remained pristine until the heavy rains fell at the end of August. Blackspot gradually kept attacking because the rains kept washing everything out. So I'm upping the amp now with the fish oils/Greencure combo.
I had scented geraniums below my Lincolns. They were the slowest to get blackspot and had the least blackspot out of my roses, but I'm not sure whether this was because Lincolns are pretty resistant to blackspot. Geraniums are supposed to help buffer against blackspot. This year I won't be growing the scented geraniums, because I'm too lazy! I only like perennials because I don't have to keep replanting over and over again. Anyone up for a geranium experiment and can report???? Since I'm not growing geraniums this year I will let everyone know if I get more blackspot on my Lincolns compared to last year.
Jim's experiment will be using cornmeal on his soil as well. We heard that this was a good deterrent from blackspot overwintering in the soil. I would like to try the cornmeal but I keep forgetting to do this.
My year 2009 experiment against thrips was this and it worked for my hybrid teas. I use hot pepper wax spray as a repellent just for the blooms themselves. I spray in incremental measures as the bloom is developing up until the point when the bud opens and the color starts to show. Once the sepals open I stop spraying the buds with the hot pepper spray because I want the bees to continue visiting my flowers. This has proven to be 65%-100% effective. I have pretty heavy thrips infestations because I made the huge mistake of planting gladiolus (thrips magnets) with my roses last year. I'm quite happy with the hot pepper wax spray.
Anyone up for a black citrus fly experiment using ginger??? I heard this from a very nice gentleman who works for Walmart. He grew orange trees when he lived in California and at first he had a problem with black citrus fly (aphids) and those caterpillar types of worms. Now every season he'll spray this ginger root liquid and he says all those aphids and caterpillar worms will fall off immediately and won't bother his trees for the rest of the season.
Anyone else doing any organics experiments? It doesn't necessarily have to do with just insects and blackspot. Just as long as it's an experiment! I'm going to also place this experiment list on the American side so we can do a side-by-side comparison with what's going on in Europe and abroad and their ideas.