Green pest control: Where we start
A big part of the problem with pest control is where we start. The starting point for most pest management activities is the point at which the pests begin to annoy us. At this point, if we are “green” in our approach to life, we will seek a “green” solution. We want to find a green pesticide to get rid of our pest problem. The problem is that we have missed the opportunity to exercise the most green pest control where it would have done the most good. We have slipped into the mode of thinking that brought about the commercial pesticide usage levels we see today. The tendency to treat symptoms instead of dealing with the problem.
Green pest control products
Don’t get me wrong, there is nothing wrong with green pest control products. There are many fine natural pest control products on the market today, some that rival the best commercial pesticides in effectiveness. The issue is not whether or not to use them. The issue is whether they should be our first line of defense. The issue is that we have failed to change our habits and the way we think about managing pests. If we do the same things that we have always done, only with a different product, we still miss the mark.
Let’s use a toothache as an example. If you have a serious recurring toothache that you have treated in the past with chemical pain killers. One day you realize that these pain killers are doing damage to your system and decide to try something different. You find yourself a supplier of willow bark tea, and use that instead. Each and every time the toothache returns you do the same thing. You get relief for a while, but it always comes back.
What would be a better course of action? We would suggest finding the cause of the toothache, and solving that problem. Then you can stop using anything, or at least use it less often.
Unfortunately, that is the way we deal with pest problems. The key is to change our thinking. To become proactive. To deal with the problem at the root instead of treating symptoms.
Pests are a symptom pest prevention is the solution
We must realize that pests are the symptom of a bigger problem. We should find the primary cause of that problem and deal with it first. We need to alter the situation in such a way that it is no longer a problem, or at least so that the problem is brought to manageable levels. We need to practice the only form of perfectly green pest control: Pest prevention!
Preventing pests is a matter of altering the environment around us to discourage pests. We need to avoid creating habitats that pests naturally prefer. We should stop feeding the pests and providing cover for them.
When we have done this, the use of green pest control products for organic pest control is perfectly appropriate, when and if it is needed.