Saturday, July 9, 2011

Bug Juice

My engineer, mathematics teaching, philosopher, and blueberry farmer buddy, Bob, found this recipe for a minced garlic cocktail bugs love to hate. I think I would add a bit of Cheyenne pepper juice to it for good measure. 

I haven't tried it, but I have a bunch of "imperfect garlic " (if there is such a thing), and I'm gonna bottle some up. Might be a new market for the garlic in my life...and there's a never ending stream of it right now. I look in the mirror and my head is starting to look like a garlic bulb!

The temperature thing is true an engineering phenom. Bob, a retired engineer, if there is such a thing, has too much time on his hands. I'm sure if engineers can get the last space shuttle off the ground, the theory of humidity and temperature has applications to agricultural endeavors.

Credit is given where due... I have not been to GH Organics... but, I suspect they approach organic farming in the same manner engineers approach making rocks fly. I think large batches would be in order here, as most bugs in my garden just keep coming back and back. A sign that they like my product... as my Daddy used to say. "1/3 for the bug, 1/3 for the weather, 1/3 for you, maybe."

Here it is:

 From GH Organics:

To make: Combine 3 ounces of minced garlic cloves with 1 ounce of mineral oil. Let soak for 24 hours or longer. Strain.
Next mix 1 teaspoon of fish emulsion with 16 ounces of water. Add 1 tablespoon of castile soap to this.
Now slowly combine the fish emulsion water with the garlic oil. Kept in a sealed glass container - this mixture will stay viable for several months.
To use: Mix 2 tablespoons of garlic oil with 1 pint of water and spray.
When working with oil sprays you want to monitor the climate conditions so your plants won't get phytotoxic burn. Use this simple equation: Take the current outdoor Fahrenheit temperature then add to this the percentage of humidity, if the total is more than 140 don't spray.
Example: Temperature of 80 degrees plus humidity of 67 percent equals 147, don't spray. You also do not want to spray when temps are above 80F.

Now, for my part in all this, I recommend an organic product called Pyrethrin, concocted from the root of a South American Chrysanthemum. It's pricey, but can be found online. DO NOT substitute Pymethrin, an organo-phosphate that is in no way organic. 

We used to sell Pyrethrin at the hardware store, but " they" sorta' pulled it off the market. I have a feeling its cause Pymethrin is cheaper to make in a chemical plant, more toxic to the world in general, but good for the "bottom line", not for you, or yours, or anyone except the "stockholder".

Try the garlic spread. Plant something, even if it's just an upside down porch tomato. They get bugs, too. Grow something you's a cool feeling. leave off the commercial bug sprays. i promise they will creat more problems than they cure in the long run.

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