Home Forums Cannabis Cultivation Pest Control Tips Reply To: Pest Control Tips

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Pest control is a complex topic as most people fix on reactive solutions like using sprays, beneficial organisms or predators instead of considering cultural/preventative practices we can use to keep bugs out in the first place. Filters on intake fans or better yet a plenum box with a hepa filter,, sterilization between crops, simple procedures like sterilizing your scalpel between taking clones from different plants and ensuring adequate watering/fertigatiom are just some examples of things to consider around pest control.

Fungus Gants for example are never an issue if you use a BTi product when watering, the cheapest usually being mosquito dunks added to the reservoir which will wipe out any larvae before the grow and prevent an infestation from happening. Obviously proper watering is key but if you’re growing in a medium like coco which ideally is kept at a constant, optimal saturation to balance the availability of water/nutrients without limiting the oxygen supply; using BTi will eliminate the possibility of gnats getting established. Pathogen management really comes down to understanding as much as possible about that specific pathogen and using targeted strategies to eliminate it.

I personally always talk to a company supplying predatory pests for advice on which I can use. While ladybugs are voracious mini-cows, the conditions in your room and pests you’re dealing with really determine which is the best to use. Reading about the different predators is also invaluable as some will be able to survive off pollen from things like peppers which make them more functional in the right conditions. I don’t know enough about them to be giving specific advice, which is why I ask the pros who sell them. I’ve used Natural Insect Control before and highly recommend them for any Canadian/Ontario growers.

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UV lights (I assume you mean UV-C, which is used as a control for fungus as well as pests) is a tricky one as there are very specific risks due to the fact it’s carcinogenic so you need to be fully covered and have proper eye protection as well, or have the light contained as part of the ventilation system or come on when the room is empty. It’s also hard on the plants if they’re over exposed to it but if used correctly and safely is definitely an interesting option.

Personally I use a weekly spray of neem oil and potassium bicarbonate as a preventative until we’re well into winter and there’s no worries about bugs catching a ride inside. If there’s an infestation of mites then I’ll alternate with safer’s end all (pyrethrum and insecticidal soap). Thrips are easily managed with the weekly spray combined with using mosquito dunks in my res to eliminate any larvae in the soil, a commonly over looked step when dealing with thrips.

There’s as many was to manage pests as there are growers. I know a lot of people avoid neem because of the fear that it’s poisonous and related to CHS (cannabinoid hyperemesis syndrome), which is where educating yourself to understand the issues comes into play considering the garbled state of info about dope and how to grow it. I personally have no problem with neem used in veg, it shouldn’t be used in flower as there’s better solutions which won’t affect the taste. I’m looking forward to hearing other peoples strategies or tricks on how to keep their rooms clean and growing all the greenery.

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