Regional Gardening Reports :: National Gardening Association

Northern California Coastal & Inland Valleys

May, 2011
Regional Report

Tool or Gardening Product

Studies are being done by the US Government to see if a substance called Nootkatone will be beneficial as an insect repellant. Nootkatone was previously thought to be one of the main chemical components of the smell and flavor of grapefruit. It is totally harmless, has a pleasant citrus scent, and can be consumed in its undiluted state.

Nootkatone is typically extracted from grapefruit. It has been proven to be an effective repellent against mosquitoes and ticks and also may be used as an environmentally friendly pesticide for many insect pests including as ants, termites, and cockroaches. Unlike Deet, Nookatone has no greasy feel or chemical odor. Studies are currently being done on humans. Products containing a combination of Nookatone and sunscreen should be available as early as next year.


Now in its fourth printing, the Beekeepers Handbook by Diana Sammataro and Alphonse Avitabile (Cornell University Press) contains everything you need to know to set up productive beehives, including understanding the amazing world of bee culture and colony activities. The book is clearly illustrated and contains a glossary with an appendix containing fun facts about bees, metric conversions, and the differences between African and European bees. Bee anatomy, pests and diseases, additional reference material, and favorite plants are covered in this extensive yet easy to use beekeeping manual.


Today's site banner is by sunnyvalley and is called "Aster, Bloom and Bud"