Lady bugs are an extremely effective way of controlling pests in a greenhouse or garden.  They are voracious predators of aphids and white fly and will seek and destroy pests where sprays often cannot reach.  I find lady bugs to sometimes be more effective than sprays and use them extensively and weekly at our Bayfield greenhouses.

Safer products provide non-chemical insect control and protection for virtually all outdoor and indoor plants.  Safer Soap has been the standard insecticidal soap for many years; safe, reliable, and very effective on soft bodied insects.  Insecticidal soaps work by washing the insect’s protective cuticle away causing the insect to desiccate and die.  This type of control is very effective and organic.  Too much insecticidal soap can also wash the protective cuticle away from some plant leaves so care must be taken when applying these products repeatedly.

Other quality Safer products include bioneem, tomato and vegetable spray, and BT spray for caterpillars.  All of the Safer products are organic, safe, and effective.


Horticultural oils control insects by smothering them with a fine oil film.  These products work well in cool temperatures and in shady conditions where soaps are less effective.  Horticultural oils do not wash away plant cuticles but can burn plants if applied on sunny, hot days.  We stock horticultural oils year round.


FertilomeFertilome products are available in organic formulations this year.  Native Roots is pleased to carry the Natural Guard line of organically formulated insect control products from Fertilome including their insecticidal soap and horticultural oil.  Natural Guard Crawling Insect Control is a diatomaceous earth product for repelling crawling insects.  Its active ingredient is silica sand which irritates the underside of crawling insects.

As in the fertilizers, the Hi Yield line of pesticides offers the same great quality as Fertilome for less.  Native Roots carries some of the more generic Hi Yield products such as dormant oil spray  chemical for house invading

BobbexOrganic Repellants 
We have found that Bobbex deer and rodent repellent is a product that really does what it says it will do.  Bobbex is a mix of naturally repulsive organic products that repel deer and rabbits as well as protects flower bulbs from gophers and ground squirrels.  It is effective for up to two weeks per application on surface plants and will protect treated bulbs for a full season.  It also has a slight fertilization component that will green up annuals and young vegetable plants.  Native Roots carries both the ready to use Bobbex as well as concentrate in quantities from one quart bottles to five gallon pales.

Nolo BaitGot grasshoppers?  That is a common question during the summer months in La Plata county and the answer is usually YES!  Nolo Bait is the answer to grasshoppers.  Locally produced, Nolo Bait is a wheat based product laced with a bacteria that kills only grasshoppers and will have no effect on other organisms especially other insects, pets, and humans.  The beauty of Nolo Bait is that it will persist in the environment for several months controlling grasshoppers through out the summer and even into the following spring.  We carry small containers for the homeowner and we can special order large bags for those of you with acreage.  We use Nolo Bait at our Bayfield greenhouse farm and have had terrific results. It may seem expensive but well worth every penny in the long lasting control it gives of grasshoppers.

SluggoHere’s a product we stumbled across several years ago to control slugs at our Bayfield greenhouse farm.  Sluggo slug bait is nothing more than pelletilized  iron phosphate fertilizer but boy does it control slugs.  Most chemical slug baits are very toxic to the environment and can be absorbed by edible vegetable plants, so we were very excited when this product first came on the market.  Slugs seem to be attracted to the pellets so Sluggo can be lightly broadcast through out the garden between irrigations. You’ll get fertilization and slug control in one step.

Don’t forget to monitor pest populations with yellow sticky traps, another great Safer product.  Insects are attracted to yellow and blue, therefore they get stuck on sticky cards when they fly or crawl onto the card.  Why spray when you don’t have to?  These cards let you actually see what the pest population is doing in your greenhouse or garden