Regional Gardening Reports :: National Gardening Association

Northern & Central Midwest

May, 2007
Regional Report

Web Finds

Beyond Pesticides
The National Coalition Against the Misuse of Pesticides Web site has fact sheets on many pests, with advice on how to control them without pesticide use. The fact sheets also give tips for monitoring and selecting resistant varieties. The site also has an extensive selection of fact sheets on pesticides to help educate consumers. It's accessible with or without a membership.

Tool or Gardening Product

Kaolin Clay
Surround is a product made of white, powdered clay that's refined enough to mix with water and pass through most home sprayers. You mix the material well and then spray it on developing fruit, usually starting a few days after petal fall. The fruit should be thoroughly coated and the spray repeated every 7 to 14 days until the growth slows. This coating makes the fruit unappealing to pests, which will then move on. The clay washes off when the fruit is harvested, and aside from giving you "ghost trees" during the growing season, the substance is inert and harmless to the environment. One online source for the clay is Gardens Alive (


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