How To Treat and Control Indoor Garden Pests
Even though you’re growing plants indoors with your hydroponics gardening system, that doesn’t mean you won’t have to deal with the occasional outdoor gardening issues. For example, though growing indoors provides some measure of protection against insects and other creepy-crawly critters, these pests still have a way of finding their way into your home and onto your plants, munching away and killing your hard-earned growth. If you need a few ideas on how to organically eliminate insects and other invaders, here’s how to treat and control indoor garden pests.
Keep Things Clean
A hydroponic garden seems to take care of itself, with only occasional refilling of the nutrient tank necessary, right? Wrong. If you’re not monitoring your system, you’re leaving it open to attacks from insects, mold, fungus, mildew, bacteria, and more. Set up a cleaning and sterilizing schedule as soon as possible. At least once a day, you should take the time to sweep up fallen leaves and other detritus, wash the floor, wipe down and disinfect the area, and monitor and gently clear your plants of collected dust, dirt, and the like. Flush the system and clean and sterilize it once a week as well to make it an uninviting space for bugs.
Don’t Bring in the Bugs!
Keep your grow room clean and sterile by treating it like a laboratory (which it kind of is). Wear clean clothes and a hooded coverall over your street clothes for extra cleanliness and bug resistance. If you’ve been wandering around in any kind of nature, change your clothes and give them a good washing before entering the grow room. Shoes can be special offenders as well; keep a comfortable pair handy inside the grow room to ensure you don’t track anything inside.
Keep this in mind, especially if you’re bringing in any other plants. Inspect them for insects, odd growths, potential disease indicators, and more. Likewise, organic grow media like rice husks can hide bugs! Finally, ensure your grow room is mostly sealed off from the rest of the house, with no tears in the grow tent walls, cracks or crevices in the walls leading outside, and so on.
Watch the Humidity
Humidity plays a huge part in raising any hydroponic garden. A dryer environment can encourage the development of spider mites, which can damage your plants by draining them of sap. They dislike higher humidity, so that seems like an easy fix. However, you don’t want to go too high because that can risk incurring rot and other issues in your plants. Most experts recommend keeping humidity at around 50 percent, as this encourages many insects to scram without harming your plants in the process.
Get Rid of Pests Organically
If, despite your best efforts, you still have insect interlopers, here’s one final way to treat and control indoor garden pests before they take over and damage your plants: use a natural pesticide. For hydroponic pest control, there are numerous natural pesticides available. You can also hose down your plants or use soap and citrus mixtures or neem oil to discourage insects from laying eggs.