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Gardener shows off the beautiful secret weapon they use to fight off pests: 'I'm trying [this] for my garden'

"Aphids like to suck the juices from succulent types of plants."

Gardener using Nasturtiums to fight off pests

Photo Credit: @jerrasgarden/ TikTok

Sometimes, pest control doesn't always mean pest extermination. One TikToker showed off her garden full of beautiful nasturtiums, which not only look great but also serve to keep her tomato plants free from swarms of aphids. 

The scoop

The TikToker explains in her video, "Aphids like to suck the juices from succulent types of plants."

Using this knowledge to her advantage, she decided to plant 'bait' species of nasturtiums, which the aphids also like. This ensures a greater likelihood that the aphids will leave other plants (like tomatoes) alone.

@jerrasgarden The aphids are coming, so be prepared by planting a lot of nasturtiums. Aphids like to suck the juices out of succulent plants, like tomatoes. Nasturtiums are a succulent flowering plant that will attract the aphids, so they leave your other crops alone. They are my top favorite trap crop for aphids and help me achieve my organic gardening goals.  I'm expecting the aphid population in my garden to surge within the next few weeks as we move into spring. If you are past your last spring frost date, then go ahead and start direct sowing seeds. Not only are nasturtium plants gorgeous, but the flowers are edible too! They have a nice peppery flavor that provide a gourmet touch to salads.  I have seeds for nasturtiums on my website. #organicgardening #growvegetables #beginnergardening #gardeningtips #growyourownfood #eatwhatyougrow  #gardeninglove #gardenlife #gardening101 #vegetablegarden #garden #urbanfarm #smallgarden #floridagarden #orlandogarden #zone9 #zone9b #gardenhacks #gardentips #homestead  #aphids #nasturtium ♬ original sound - Jerra's Garden

How's it helping

This pest control hack is an instance of companion planting, in which different varieties of plants are grown together to offer a specific benefit to the other plants in the garden. There are countless different kinds of companion planting options, though it's particularly helpful when growing your own produce. 

Companion planting is a fantastic alternative to more conventional (yet environmentally destructive) forms of pest control, such as toxic pesticides, which have been connected to global, catastrophic effects on insect populations. Fighting pests with plants is a sustainable and beautiful way to keep your veggies safe.

There are all kinds of unique herbs, flowers, and vegetables that can be planted to confer some kind of benefit to their garden neighbors. If you want to try a different approach to pest management, try planting garlic, which is known to repel aphids and other insect annoyances. 

However, not every plant will play well with every other plant. If you want to try companion planting yourself, see which kinds of plants grow well together before you sow an entire garden's worth of seeds. This step will save you disappointment when your harvest doesn't turn out quite right.

What's everyone saying

The comments were full of praise for the bait plant of choice. "Love them! And it's another edible, woohoo!" said one, drawing attention to the fact that the nasturtiums themselves can also be at home in the garden or the kitchen.

"And you can use it to make a healthy herb tea and add it to your salads. very healthy spicy flower," another added.

"Great tips I'm trying for my garden," another added.

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