We have talked about organic pest control many times before, emphasizing on plants, soil amendments and beneficial insects or flowers that contribute to the reduction of garden pests. However, presented with an interesting challenge from our readers, we realized we didn’t focus much on the introduction of pests’ natural predators in the garden. As we all know, Texas is home for hundreds of pest and insects varieties.
On the other hand, the use of pesticides and chemical treatments is a sensitive subject when it comes to organic horticulture or safe lawn care approaches. This is why today we will think outside the box and consider the introduction of toads in your landscape so they can act as pest predators. Granted, toads are not the most pleasant looking wildlife you can offer your home to, but with the proper care you will enjoy all the benefits offered by toads without having many reasons to complain.
Our lawn care Mansfield, TX specialists consider that the introduction of a toad in your garden should be considered a dream came true. Toads naturally prey on slugs, snails and insects, being able to consume around 10,000 in a single summer. Entertaining the presence of a toad on your property thus reduces your need to use heavy chemicals and other pest control eco-unfriendly substances or labor-intensive natural control methods. However, attracting toads in your garden needs some careful preparations and landscaping makeovers.
First and foremost, toads are amphibians, so they need moisture to live, even if they can thrive on both land and water. In comparison to frogs, toads don’t need so much water to survive, but they do require a moist habitat. Toads favor humid and shadowy hiding places: you can find them under boards, porches, loose rocks or at the basis of trees. You can however encourage them to stay by providing them with a permanent shelter in the shape of a toad house. This will convince the toad to take residence on your property and become an interesting decorative element in your landscape.
Of course, one of the easiest ways to attract and keep toads is to install a small pond in your garden or keep a ditch filled with water for the most part of the year. Toads won’t affect your crops but will make sure the pests populations in your garden have something to fear. Toads don’t live in water like frogs, but need water to reproduce. Besides being a nice addition to your landscape, a small pond will ensure toads’ thriving and promote future generations of toads to thrive in your garden.
Besides attracting it to your garden and offering it a proper environment so it can act as a natural pest predator, you also have to keep the toad safe. It is food for snakes, birds and even your pet (that can kill it), so make sure you offer it some groundcovers to hide and install the toad house or the pond in a slightly elevated area so it can stay safe. Another way to protect the toads is to reduce your use of chemicals and pesticides. Toads are extremely sensitive to toxic materials and chemicals might endanger their life. If you are interested in this organic and innovative pest control method, ask your lawn care Mansfield, TX specialists for more information on the topic.