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Fall Clean Up for Pest Control

A bit of fall cleanup can save time and energy controlling pests next season. 

Leave healthy disease- and insect-free perennials stand for the winter.  They provide winter beauty, habitat for beneficial insects and food for the birds.

But do remove any diseased or insect-infested plants from the garden.  These serve as a source of disease infection and pest infestation in next year’s garden.

Continue to weed the garden.  Removing weeds now and especially before they drop their seeds will reduce the number of weeds you will be pulling next spring.  And mulch the soil with evergreen needles, shredded leaves or woodchips.  Mulch prevents many weed seeds from sprouting.

Destroy and do not compost these materials.  Most compost piles do not heat up sufficiently to kill off insects, disease organisms and weed seeds.

A bit more information: Regulations for managing disease and insect-infested yard waste as well as weeds varies from one community to the next.  Contact your local municipality or Extension office to find out the best way to dispose of invasive and troublesome weeds, as well as diseased or insect-infested plant material in your community.

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