Many gardeners and consumers are concerned with the quality, purity and safety of the food they eat. With soils becoming tainted and water sources polluted, it is a valid concern. In the farming industry, use of pesticides and herbicides has grown for years as farmers have attempted to control the pests and weeds that challenge their crops.
With consumers demanding safer produce, there has recently been an active movement away from excessive pesticide use. One way to achieve this is by the use of Biological pest controls rather than chemical pest controls. Biological controls consist of insects, mites and micro-organisms which, as natural enemies, keep pests under control.
Many commercial hydroponic growers who produce their crops within a controlled environment greenhouse exclusively use biological controls for problem pests. When bringing biological controls or beneficial insects into the greenhouse a natural balance can be achieved.
It is possible to control pests in an open field with biological means but it is not as effective as within a greenhouse or other closed environment.
Virtually all insects have a predator or enemy and that is what makes biological control work. There are insectaries (facilities that raise insects) throughout the US and Worldwide that breed and sell beneficial insects. Beneficials are shipped as eggs, larvae or adults and are usually sent overnight to the user who quickly distributes them to the problem areas.
Listed below are some growing tents and boxes you can use to protect your hydroponic gardens from pests and predators.