Backyard Biodynamics - grasshoppers and california thistle

This forum is for airing research, impressions, concerns and other related aspects with others interested in minimising weeds and pest issues using peppers and remedies.
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Backyard Biodynamics - grasshoppers and california thistle

Post by Mark » 01 Feb 2012, 09:59

http://backyardbiodynamics.com/?p=647

I tried the peppering method for grasshoppers in my garden last year. The grasshoppers had been eating everything down to the soil. I invited 5 kids over to help catch the hoppers and then fed the kids omelets with veggies from my garden and eggs from my chickens. (Who would rather eat the sprouting lettuce than chase grasshopper and eat them.) I roasted the hoppers over my kitchen electric stove. Making a wood fire outside in our high fire danger area was an offense of the law last summer. Then I sprinkled the ashes around and on top of half my squash and bean plants. I didn’t have enough for all. The plants that were peppered produced almost twice as much as the ones that were not. Their flowers were not eaten back and neither were the leaves. I had no idea of timing like I do now, but I must have been very lucky to do it in the right time. It worked great.

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I have used Peppering to control weeds here in New Zealand. California thistle has been controlled well in peppered areas, and none has come back in treated areas after many years. I noticed the first year after treatment, some plants grew in those areas, but strangely enough, they never formed flower heads or seeded.
When burning the seeds, I make sure the fire consists of only branches, sticks etc,- no newspapers or anything man made. I used dried hay to start the fire [took a bit of effort!]. Next project will be those pesky rabbits and possums. If I could just get someone else to skin them for me! [bit squeamish about that part]