Overuse of pesticides can have detrimental environmental impacts, but there are easy ways to stop your workplace alfresco or office outdoor view from being destroyed by hungry insects and aphids. At Alpha Environmental, we offer a range of environmental services to promote healthy soil for commercial sites.
We are experts in suppressing pests without damaging your soil and the natural ecosystem by risking chemical contamination. We’ve explored some more environmentally friendly alternatives for carefree use in your workplace surroundings to promote bright, natural scenery for your office space.
The problem with pesticides
Pesticides often linger on plants as residue, posing health risks to your plants, your health and your soil. The poisonous layer is also harmful to friendly bugs that enhance the soil and plants, like worms and pollinators, which in turn damages the natural ecosystem. These chemicals can be detrimental to your office landscaping long into the future by affecting the pH balance of the soil.
Healthy, well-balanced soil helps to grow stronger plants to fight off intrusive insects and the diseases they carry. If you’re concerned about contaminating your environmental area, Alpha Environmental can help with some easy ideas for insect management around your office space.
1. Plant flowers to attract beneficial insects
For long-term, natural insect control, try encouraging beneficial insects like ladybugs and praying mantises by introducing some of their favourites to your commercial site, like flowering mint or sunflowers. These insects will control aphid and mite populations without eating the beautiful landscaping of your building! Ladybugs can also be purchased to quickly help with an infestation, although the helpful, winged insects will quickly relocate after their food source is depleted.
2. Trap crops and sacrificial crops
Trap crops are specifically planted as a sacrifice to lure pests away from your main plants and flowers. Your choice of trap crop is dependent on the targeted insect and the timing of the year. For common garden bugs, nasturtiums are a great choice as they need little care and thrive in poor soil. They attract aphids, luring them away from the alfresco area that you’d like to protect.
When you first notice insects gathering on your trap crop, simply remove the leaves where the pests reside with a pruning tool and throw it in the bin to prevent them from further encroaching into your building’s landscaping. It can also be useful to practice companion planting and place your trap crop alongside flowers. Bright flowers will also attract those beneficial insects to take care of the pests on your sacrificial crop, providing extra protection and beautiful office surroundings with no maintenance needed.
3. Garlic and chilli sprays as a general pest deterrent
Garlic and onion have a strong scent that deters bugs and can be safely sprayed across your office grounds without harming the earth. To create this natural deterrent, take a couple of peeled cloves of garlic and a peeled onion and leave them in a spray bottle filled with water overnight.
Mixing in a chopped chilli will also add a spicy taste to all the plants that won’t be appreciated by hungry insects. This spray will create an off-putting odour that wards off many garden pests. For sustained bug control around your commercial space, spraying the scent of garlic and onions is an easy method of driving insects away and maintaining your inviting office views.
4. Detergent sprays for aphid infestations
The dreaded aphid always seems to strike just when your landscaping is looking its best. Aphids are small insects that feed on the nutritious liquids of plants and tend to quickly multiply and overrun their surroundings. They appear in a multitude of colours including white, black, or light green, and cause significant harm to your plants and hedges.
By ingesting sap, these pests stop the plant from transporting valuable nutrients along the stems and also spread disease. If you begin to note brown or curling leaves, look for these invaders in your office garden in clusters on the underside of leaves and stalks. Aphids are a common pest, but they can be removed without needing to resort to harsher chemicals. A simple and cheap option is to mix one litre of water with one tablespoon of insecticidal soap and spray this mixture directly on the bugs.
Ensure the soap is made from natural oils and fats and not from synthetic chemicals which will remove the protective coating of plants. If you fear the pests are quickly getting out of hand, trim the stems where the aphids reside and place them in the bin to prevent the spread from taking hold of your office surroundings.
Premium environmental services in Melbourne
Alpha Environmental offer a range of environmental services which can be used to identify and manage the presence of pesticides on a property.
To learn more about our capabilities, contact the dedicated team of Alpha Environmental by calling 1300 039 181 or filling out our online enquiry form.