so, today i was poking around in my garden a bit. feeding my worms here, planting a few spinach seeds there, nothing major.
i happened to look at my cherry tomato plant (which came up all by itself last year, and incidentally was pretty much the only plant in my garden that produced anything) and noticed something that looked black and furry. upon closer inspection i saw that it was an infestation of spiky black bugs!!
nooooo. i thought. how can this be? i am not immune to the bug infestations that all my gardening books talk about like i was hoping??
so i went inside and googled "black spiky bug tomato" and found out that they were tree hopper nymphs. (seriously, how did anybody do anything before google??) relief! the problem is named. but how to rid my prized tomato plant of them?
almost everything i read suggested picking them off and squishing them by hand.
now, if you know me, you know that i CANNOT squish a bug (except for ants... i hate ants...). its not because i feel sorry for the bugs, but because i absolutely hate the crunchy sound/feeling under my fingers when i have to squish one (even thinking about it makes me squirm!).
so what to do??? i went outside again, and noticed that most of the branches they were on were probably dispensable (they didn't have any flowers or tomatoes on them), so i considered cutting them off and throwing them in the trash.
and then the brilliant idea came! i carefully cut off the branches and took them into the house, and tossed them into our chicken box. at first the chicks were a bit scared but eventually they started to peck... and soon they devoured all of my tomato pests.
bugs are very nutritious for chickens. so, not only did i get rid of the bugs, but i also helped to nourish our chickens. two birds with one stone... yeah!
sarah + chicks = gardening WIN!!!! :D