Jacobs Farm in Santa Cruz, Calif. was recently awarded $1 million in damages for lost income due to pesticide drift.
Managing Cover Crops Profitably, 3rd Edition, is now available in print and by download from the Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education program. Learn how to make your soil perform at its very best!
Be sure to contact the Environmental Protection Agency and the Poison Control Center, as well as seek medical attention after experiencing pesticide drift.
Check out this expert advice for keeping an organic garden pest-free.
Cover crops are grown between planting seasons as a way to give back to the soil what cultivation takes from it. And cover crops aren’t just for large-scale growers—they can help you get the most out of your backyard vegetable garden too!
This spring when the pests arrive in your garden try this radical strategy - Do nothing!
“Bed bugs” are small nocturnal insects that feed on blood. Here are some tips for keeping them out of your home, and for getting rid of them--without using toxic pesticides/insecticides--if they do show up.
Yellow jackets can pose a threat to honeybees. If yellow jackets have built a nest in your yard, here's a recipe for a natural, non-toxic solution that will get rid of them. Please share your own recommendations too!
The victim of a spray drift incident often finds him or herself on the defensive.
The many problems associated with recognizing, treating and reporting pesticide drift exposures.
Identify the animal tracks and footprints of the critters who visit your garden and yard.
Basil is at its best during hot summertime weather. Pick it, wash it and make it into appetizing, healthy pesto!
The green of summer available right in your freezer year round!
British scientists have found that many pesticides--including those commonly found in food and 16 that were previously considered safe--disrupt male hormones.
Tired of pests? Here are five tips for knocking ‘em back without resorting to pesticides and toxic chemicals.
What is Pesticide Drift? “Pesticide drift” is the movement of a pesticide through the air away from the intended target. You might actually see the drift in the form of a mist. You may smell it. But it can be invisible and odorless. The spray may be applied from the back of a tractor — referred to as a “rig.” Or it may be applied from a spray plane or helicopter.
A MOTHER EARTH NEWS reader survey turned up some interesting findings about stink bugs, imported pests that have now been spotted in 35 states.
Concerned about pesticides in your food? The Pesticide Action Network’s online database helps you understand which carcinogens and pesticides are present in 89 common foods.
Want to know more about the food at your farmers market? Here's some advice from the farmers themselves.
EPA confirms that neonicotinoid treatment does not increase soybean yield.
Fresh pesto is great in the summer, but it's even better in the middle of winter!
A new danger faces unborn babies and children, as exposure to pesticides increases the risk of brain tumors and other cancer-related illnesses.
Leafy greens are among the most nutritious foods you can eat, but what if they contain systemic pesticides like imidacloprid? New pesticides that are taken up by plants mean there may be pesticides in food crops like collards and kale, not just on the surface.
Like many things in nature, the catalpa tree and worm have a special one-on-one relationship.
This post outlines the process when an inspector from your state regulatory agency visits your property to view pesticide damage.
According to a German and Swiss scientific report, terrestrial pesticide exposure may be a cause of the globally declining amphibian population.
The Verdict discusses two possible findings of your spray drift incident after the State Enforcement Agency inspects your property.
This installment explains what complainants might encounter during the time between the State’s pesticide drift inspection and the results of this inspection.
Reporting Pesticide Drift outlines the steps you should take to report a pesticide incident to your state enforcement agency.
What it means to stick up for yourself when you experience pesticide drift.
How to report application violations of herbicide abuse.
Survivalist Gardener Rick Austin offers natural and long-lasting tips for repelling pests and insects in gardens hidden in the forest.
Pennsylvania is under federal quarantine due to the threat of Emerald Ash Borers. Raising awareness and getting the facts are important. However, getting to the root of the problem may be as simple as supporting local food systems.
Cam battles with scarabs in his raspberry patch.
Managing expectations and learning more about your pond or lake are key in being satisfied with the benefits of having a natural body of water on your property.
One of the things you can do this fall to help your fish is to add three-dimensional pond fish habitat, especially if you have a bass-bluegill pond.
How big a woodlot would I need to heat my home with wood for the entire winter?
How can we clean up our rural spaces best. Is it up to individuals or governments?
This year’s Buckminster Fuller Challenge winner is revegetating African grasslands through holistic land management.
Dixie Chopper, the manufacturer of The World’s Fastest Lawn Mower, offers the Zee 2 series, its newest and largest line of residential zero-turn lawn mowers. Ideal for large property owners, Zee 2 mowers include a variety of features for fast performance, quality cutting and comfortable operation.
The different emotions you may experience as you deal with Pesticide Drift on your property or your person.
The California Department of Pesticide Regulation (DPR) has approved the use of methyl iodide, a pesticide toxic to humans, for application to strawberry fields. Methyl iodide is recognized as a carcinogen that can also cause late term miscarriage and permanent neurological damage. Scientists agree that farmers cannot safely use the pesticide, and a concerned coalition has formed to persuade Governor Brown to put a moratorium on the use of methyl iodide.
Learn how to pinch back basil tops for a particularly bushy plant, then make delicious pesto with your harvest.
Basil is a versatile herb that can be used for companion planting, bee forage, year-round herb as well as delicious pesto.
Learn why systemic neonicotinoid pesticides widely used to grow corn are one of the reasons so many honeybees and other pollinators are dying.
Is rotenone organic? The Organic Materials Review Institute (OMRI) sorts out that complicated question about a pesticide being used on some organic farms.
Are organic foods healthier? In the wake of a media frenzy revolving a “study” by Stanford University claiming to answer this question, many people were left wondering. Benefits of organic food go beyond the vitamin content: The overwhelming amounts and types of pesticides in our food play a major role in many shoppers’ decision to go organic.
The dangers of bud nip (Chlorpropham) and the effects of chemical herbicides on the food you're eating come to light in a potato project conducted by a smart, young lady.
After finding the illegal presence of genetically engineered wheat in Oregon, the USDA has found another, similar case in Montana.
Sharp-eyed guineas are among the most useful of all farm fowl for control of crop-damaging insects. Essential to the author’s squash bug control project is ElectroNet (electric net fencing), which he uses to make a perimeter around the squash plot. A small moveable pasture shelter is provided inside the net — in which the guineas roost at night, or find shade or shelter from rain.
Many snakes are actually helpful around the homestead because they hunt rats, mice and other small rodents. But if you have a snake problem, a terrier can help keep them under control.
Blister beetles can be picked up fairly easily; just remember to wear gloves!
Take our Pest Control Survey and read the feedback of hundreds of gardeners that have already taken the survey. Get region-specific advice about the most common garden pests and the best organic control options.
A list of weapons to fight those evil chiggers!
Don't worry about mole damage any longer; here's a nontoxic method of keeping them away!
Diatomaceous Earth (DE) is a safe, effective, organic pest control you can use to kill spiders.
It's hard to get rid of cicadas. But the cicada killer wasps they attract are nothing to worry about.
Keep spiders and other crawling bugs out of your house by using a nontoxic pest control: diatomaceous earth.
Here's a simple method for getting rid of ground wasps or yellow jackets without toxic chemicals.
You can control damage caused by carpenter bees with these nontoxic methods.
Squish the squash bugs in your garden with different methods from our experts.
The author of STAND UP AND GARDEN discusses why it is safe to can and otherwise preserve produce that's grown in an environment in which pesticides are used.
By applying the principles of landrace gardening, you can help your plants win the race against weeds.
From our last post learning about the difference between large and small ponds let’s jump into the large (below ground) ponds to discover what happens to them and what makes each pond unique. We’ll see that the watershed has a great effect on the pond water quality and the pond inhabitants have an effect on each pond even the wildlife that visits our ponds pose some challenges.
There are weeds in the pond, what to do and what to use. A description of what to do with pond weeds and how to manage them with the various pond weed tools available on the market and a description on how they work. In this article we do not discuss chemical treatments and stick to natural methods.
Did you know that you're going to have to make your digester either much larger or much warmer, if you expect to do practical biogas in the US? Well, here's that story...
There are two things that are true about biogas. The first is that biogas wants to happen. It wants to happen like plants want to grow, like fire wants to burn. And that force, that will to happen, has (at least) those two aspects: life, like the plants; and chemistry, like the fire.
Help us determine if a mixture of coffee grounds and eggshells can protect your cabbages from pest damage.
Organic gardeners often need to remove mammal pests such as groundhogs and raccoons. Like many, I use live traps. How to deal with a skunk you accidentally catch, without getting sprayed?
The good, the bad and the ugly of a nice mild winter and its effects on the homestead in 2012.
We may find it overwhelming to know where to begin in teaching others to eat healthily. People attempting to eat healthier find it difficult to know where to begin. "The Dirty Dozen" fruits and vegetables gives us all a place to start.
Intensive grazing management can answer questions regarding field carrying capacity, how much forage your animals need each day and how to manage what you have. Pizza, anyone?
Help our readers solve garden pest problems without resorting to the use of chemical pesticides.
Grow organic fruit trees and harvest bug-free, chemical-free fruit by covering your fruit with homemade bags made from row cover. Use row cover bags as an alternative to plastic bags. Row cover bags are more effective and have fewer issues than plastic bags.
MOTHER EARTH NEWS wins two exciting accolades at FOLIO’s Eddie Awards, one for their article Organic Pest Control: What Works, What Doesn’t and one for their Vegetable Garden Planner tool.
Japanese beetles feed for six to eight weeks, and in that time, they are able to feed on over 300 plant species. Although collecting beetles may seem like an exhausting every day task, you're plants will appreciate it.
A well-thought-out garden design will make your work enjoyable and manageable and will encourage the gardener's presence and attention.
Columbia University's Earth Institute will hold an informational session on its Sustainability Management program on February 10.
Wasting food in the U.S., making biogas, and using food waste to do it ... (Let's not waste all that wasted food!).
There’s a gold mine out back of your local restaurant in the form of wasted food. Learn to think like an ecologist and discover how nature turns “waste” into useable, renewable energy.
Time management tools can help a homestead run smoothly as well as make the work more enjoyable. By focusing on different tasks in different seasons, assigning different tasks to different days and by sharing tasks, the work becomes both manageable and fun.
Summing up: How much food waste makes how much biogas to power what functions around the farmstead?
Temperature is central to biogas production, and warmer is better. Much better. So if biogas is not a hot topic, it should be.
Renewable energy's ugly duckling comes of age.
Managing timbered property can benefit your wildlife and your pocketbook, but beware! Timber buyers are often con-artists. Learn the questions you should be asking about sustainable timber management on your property or homestead.
Learn how to request your “closed” complete pesticide complaint file from the State agency through the Freedom of Information Act.
How one rural county without animal control regulations or a public pet shelter is working to make a better community for all residents — both humans and their companions.
I can deal with a lot of things- floods, frosts, Japanese beetles, but one thing I can't stand is fire ants. Living in the north for a good portion of my life, I was close to unaware of their existence until I moved to the south. Then, everywhere I looked in my yard I saw the same thing; enormous mounds of orange clay filled with irritating stinging ants.
Learn to think differently and you can grow a garden without breaking the bank.
Find out how to protect your hives and honeycomb from wax moths without using chemicals.
Get rid of fire ants — without using heavy-duty chemical pesticides — with these tips for fire ant control.
TEETER PONG! live mouse traps provide a humane solution for removing mice from your home.
Learn how to make a scarecrow from scrap materials that moves and makes noise to keep deer, squirrels, rabbits and crows out of the garden.
How to acquire bat guano.
The best rat trap I have ever owned.
Discover the best mosquito traps to use in your yard. Improving your mosquito control will ensure that you can enjoy your summer evenings outdoors.
Brown marmorated stink bugs have quickly become an invasive insect in the Unites States. Find out how to indentify the stink bugs, control stink bugs in your garden and rid them from your home.
Learn to deal with cabbage worms through organic methods.
Goats are a great way to get rid of weed problems while also reducing the use of chemicals and fossil fuels.
Bird-X, Inc., a leader in producing humane pest and bird repellent products since 1964, is raising the bar even higher for the pest control industry, offering ‘green’ solutions for every pest and bird problem.
I got first bee removal call of the year yesterday. It’s a bit early, but hey, I won’t complain. The woman said that she thought there were three colonies in her wall.
How potentially dangerous chemicals are tested and are they really that safe for humans or not.
Consumer Reports has stated that it recently found arsenic in food, The United States' rice supply is contaminated with this "group 1" carcinogenic.
Simran Sethi writes about the importance of eco-friendly mattresses, bed frames, and bedding.
Our declining industrial system has created a series of environmental and social problems and can no longer produce the wealth required to solve them. That means that ordinary citizens must shoulder the burden of changing the way things are done by creating biodiverse systems. Here is a place to start.
The EPA is now defining a CAFO (formerly confined animal feeding operation) as a Country Animal Feeding Operation.
Horns or no horns, that is the question! Why should you disbud your goats, or is it okay to leave the horns on? This post discusses both options with a link to a great article about horns and their beauty.
A couple of weeks ago, the Adventure Cycling blog called attention to the Roanoke Mountain Campground's threatened closure via the Blue Ridge Parkway's Draft Management Plan (DMP).
Green Builder Media’s Vision and ReVision Houses highlight energy efficiency, water conservation, waste management, indoor air quality and great new green materials.
The mild winter, early sring and continued warm weather are really messing up the normal sequene of bloom and availability of honeybee food. What will happen this summer is anyone's guess. Be Prepared.
Find out what your options are for getting orange Asian lady beetles out of your house.
Fly season is upon us. Here are some helpful and easy hints to control those buzzing beasts at your homestead this year.
A recipe for a grease patty that doesn't use hydrogenated oils.
Fleas and ticks can bring severe itching, allergic reactions, discomfort, and even serious diseases (such as lyme disease) to your pets, so it’s important to protect your pets from them. However, studies have found that many common flea and tick control/treatment products aren’t just toxic to those bugs; they can actually poison your pets, as well. Find out which ingredients and products to avoid, and some safer alternatives to use.
A ladybug reminds us to pause, take a look around, and appreciate our surroundings.
Learn how to rotate crops with this helpful crop rotation video.
As you can guess from their name, cabbage worms primarily attack plants in the cabbage family, but are not exclusively cabbage feeders.
Keep your pet safe by learning the dangers posed by certain flea- and tick-control products.
Forget pesticides or kerosene. Instead, smother badly placed yellow jacket nests with a translucent cover.
Tips for keeping your summer garden producing at top output. This is the time of year that warm season crops are at their peak. These 7 tips will give you continued bountiful harvests through the heat.
Check out Annie B. Bond's list of 11 easy tips for making your kitchen more healthy and safe, from Care2.
A new study has uncovered a link between food and environmental allergies and chemicals found in pesticides, herbicides and other agricultural products and drinking water.
These sources can help you locate organic and other natural options for plants, seeds, and weed and pest control products.
University of Florida entomologist Russell Mizell investigated ways to attract stink bugs to trap crops rather than cash crops—with great success. His experience can help you learn how to design trap crop scenarios of your own.
Simran Sethi comes to terms with getting rid of the mouse in her home.
Advancing their commitment to helping homeowners protect their lawns and gardens from damage caused by moles, Sweeney's, a leader in DIY pest control products, introduces the Deadset MoleTrap.
Simran Sethi balances her love of nature with her fear of mice in her home.
A birdbath in the garden does much more than a birdfeeder. Attract birds to the garden with water, and they will help with pest control, soil aeration, and much more as they get the water they need for drinking and grooming. Wasps love a drink too.
Learn how bats can be beneficial for organic farmers, dramatically reducing the need for costly and harmful pesticides.
Giving your ornamental and vegetable garden a thorough cleaning in midsummer not only leaves the landscape looking better, but can help prevent damage from diseases and pests by removing the conditions in which they thrive.
Rachel gets a scare with Daisy the goat - is it bottle jaw or something else? A trip to the vet provides some lessons.
As part of the Obama Administration’s all-of-the-above strategy to
expand safe and responsible domestic energy production, the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management announced Nov. 7, 2012, a lease for commercial wind energy development 11 nautical miles off the coast of Delaware.
Home energy management, electric cars and solar gadgets take starring roles at consumer electronics industry’s biggest trade show.
Black bears and rural living go hand in hand in many parts of North America. So how do you keep bear/human conflicts to a minimum?
For those of us who hate to use chemicals in our gardens, in our homes, or with our livestock and pets, diatomaceous earth may be a safe and efficient substitute. It may worm your animals, rid them of fleas and lice and even handle indoor pests.