Environmental Tips for Homeowners
Ontario's province-wide pesticide regulation bans the sale and use of cosmetic pesticides. There are many safe alternatives for maintaning a healthy lawn, garden, shrubs and trees.
Wild Parsnip should be reported to the City of Ottawa 3-1-1 or to Rideau-Goulbourn's Ward office 613-580-2491. [Wild Parsnip information]
- Weeds: Dig up dandelions before they go to seed. Hardware stores sell diggers, water-lifters, flame burners, etc.
- Weeds: Kill plants between stones with a mixture of 4L (1 gal) vinegar, 1 cup salt, ½ teaspoon dish detergent. Apply before several days of dry weather.
- Weeds: Use corn gluten meal on lawns in spring and fall. It's a pre-emergent (prevents seeds from germinating) as well as a nitrogen fertilizer. Do not use before planting grass seed!
- Weeds: Grow moss between patio bricks to prevent weeds. Puree some green moss and water in a blender, then sprinkle between bricks. Keep moist until established and during dry weather.
- Fertilizer: Replace commercial products with seaweed concentrate, mushroom compost, rotted manure, and of course, composted kitchen and yard waste.
- Plant Fungus:
- Water plants with mixture of 5mL baking soda, 5 mL dishwashing liquid, in 1 L water.
- Water plants with water soaked with horsetail weeds for 2 days.
- Bugs: Soak rhubarb leaves in a pail of water for 2-3 days to water flowers and vegetables (cover it as this is poisonous). Wait a week before harvesting food as this is poisonous to humans too!
- Bugs: Diatomatious earth (ground rock) sprinkled where bugs crawl - use only in problem areas as this kills "good" bugs too.
- Bugs: Look around your garden regularly and "pick" off bugs and caterpillars that are eating your plants. Use gloves and drop in soapy water if you are squeamish.
- Bugs: Feed birds in the winter and they will eat insects in the summer.
- Bugs: Grubs in your lawn? Apply Nematodes (they eat grubs).
- Bugs: Chinch bugs live in "thatch" - convert lawn to organic, topdress in spring, and vacuum them up!
- Rodents: Moles or shrews are GOOD - they eat insects, grubs and slugs. Voles (field mice) eat grass, tubers, seeds and insects.
- Fires: You need a City of Ottawa Fire Permit before having a fire outside. Then you must call (613) 580-2880 prior to burning to ensure there is not a burn ban in effect.
"We know for instance, that a brand-new baby typically, out of the womb, has over 230 industrial chemicals in its blood, 190 of which have been linked to cancer." ... Guy Dauncey, 'Prevent Cancer Now'
- Related Pages:
- Rideau-Goulbourn Garbage & Recycling
- Waterfront & Rideau River Health / shoreline work