One of the reasons many people use synthetic chemicals in their gardens is to control pests that may ravage their produce. Barbara says there are easy ways to control pests organically, such as blasting damaging insects from plants with water from a hose or picking pests off your plants and drowning them in soapy water. There are organic soap and soap-and-oil sprays you can make to kill insects, but Barbara says those should always be your last resort. "In my own garden, I let the pests and the beneficial insects have a war, and if I lose a plant, I lose a plant," she says.
Deer and rabbits can also cause problems for gardeners because hungry animals may think your garden is their personal buffet! Building a fence around your garden before you plant may be the best way to deter wildlife from eating what you grow.
"You really need to fence before you plant, because once they know there is food there, they are going to move heaven and earth to get in there," Barbara says. Many gardeners also swear by special home remedies to keep animals away, such as hanging bags of fragrant soap or human hair from a beauty shop around the garden, Barbara says.