Effective Ways to Protect Common Garden Plants from Pests

common garden plants

Imagine stepping into your garden, where vibrant colors greet your eyes, lush greenery surrounds you, and the delightful fragrance of blooming flowers fills the air. It's pure magic, right? This picturesque scene is what every gardener dreams of, but keeping it looking this beautiful can be quite a task. As any seasoned gardener knows, common garden pests like aphids and spider mites are often lurking, ready to wreak havoc on your hard work.

We all want our gardens to thrive without resorting to harsh chemicals. That’s where our Natural Plant Protector comes in. This isn’t just any garden solution—it's your garden’s best friend. With our Natural Plant Protector, you can enjoy your garden’s beauty and tranquility, knowing it's safeguarded in the most eco-friendly way, all while staying kind to the planet.

Your garden deserves the best, and with Lost Coast Plant Therapy, it gets just that.
common garden plants

The Harm Caused by Chemical Pesticides

While chemical pesticides might seem like an easy fix for pest problems, they come with a laundry list of negative side effects. They can contaminate the very food you grow, seep into water supplies, and wreak havoc on the environment. For instance, when rainwater washes away these chemicals, it can pollute nearby streams and rivers, harming aquatic life and degrading water quality. Not to mention, these pesticides can be deadly to beneficial insects like bees, which are essential pollinators for garden plants like roses, petunias, and geraniums.

Chemical pesticides also pose health risks to humans. Traces left on fruits and vegetables can lead to chronic health issues if consumed over time. Plus, these chemicals can damage the soil in your garden, reducing its fertility and making it more prone to erosion. 

common garden plants

Why Choose Natural and Organic Solutions?

Switching to natural and organic gardening practices not only helps protect the environment but also promotes healthier, more robust garden plants. Lost Coast Plant Therapy is formulated with natural ingredients that are safe for people, pets, bees, ladybugs and praying mantises. See our ingredients here. Unlike chemical pesticides, which can be harsh and damaging, natural solutions work in harmony with nature, ensuring that your garden remains a vibrant and thriving ecosystem.

common garden plants

Understanding Common Garden Pests

Tiny intruders seem to have a knack for showing up just when your garden is in full bloom. Understanding these pests, how they affect your plants, and their seasonal patterns can make a world of difference in keeping your garden healthy and thriving.


Thrips are minuscule insects, often less than 1mm in size, but don't let their tiny stature fool you. These pests can cause significant damage to a wide range of garden plants. Thrips feed by puncturing plant cells and sucking out their contents, leading to distorted leaves, flowers, and fruits. They often leave behind silvery or bronze streaks on the foliage and petals, a telltale sign of their presence. Thrips are particularly fond of ornamental grasses, hydrangeas, and marigolds. You'll typically find them most active during the warmer months, from late spring to early fall. Their population can explode rapidly, especially in dry, hot weather, making it crucial to keep a close eye on your plants during these times.

See how to get rid of thrips here.

common garden plants


Aphids are another common garden pest that can be found on almost any plant. These small, soft-bodied insects come in a variety of colors, including green, black, yellow, and even pink. Aphids cluster on new growth, flower buds, and the undersides of leaves, sucking the sap and weakening the plant. This can lead to curled, yellowed leaves, stunted growth, and the production of sticky honeydew, which can attract other pests and lead to sooty mold. Roses, petunias, and geraniums are particularly vulnerable to aphid infestations. Aphids tend to thrive in cooler, early spring weather, but can persist throughout the growing season, especially in sheltered, moist areas of the garden.

See how to to get rid of aphids here

common garden plants

Spider Mites

Spider mites are tiny, often less than 0.5mm in size, and can be red, green, yellow, or brown. They are notorious for their ability to reproduce quickly, leading to massive infestations in a short period. Spider mites are often found on the undersides of leaves, where they spin fine webs. These pests suck the sap from the leaves, causing tiny yellow or white speckles, known as stippling. Over time, leaves can become bronze or gray, dry out, and fall off. Spider mites prefer hot, dry conditions and are most active during the summer months. They can cause significant damage to a variety of plants, including hydrangeas and lilacs.

See how to get rid of spider mites here

common garden plants

Powdery Mildew

Powdery mildew is a fungal disease that can affect many types of plants, including flowers, vegetables, and shrubs. It appears as a white, powdery coating on the leaves, stems, and sometimes flowers. This disease can stunt plant growth, cause leaves to yellow and drop prematurely, and reduce the overall vigor of the plant. Powdery mildew thrives in warm, dry conditions with high humidity, often appearing in mid to late summer. Plants growing in partial shade or those with poor air circulation are particularly susceptible to this disease.

See how to get rid of powdery mildew here.

common garden plants

How Our Natural Plant Protector Works

Our Natural Plant Protector is formulated with a blend of seven simple, high-quality ingredients: soy oil, peppermint essential oil, citric acid, soap, isopropyl alcohol, sodium citrate, and purified water. Each ingredient plays a crucial role in making the product both effective and safe. For instance, soy oil coats insects and suffocates them on contact—a method bugs can't build an immunity to, making it a powerful yet gentle pest control solution. Peppermint essential oil acts as a natural bug repellent, while citric acid adjusts the pH of the plant surface, making it inhospitable for fungi like powdery mildew.

When you apply Lost Coast Plant Therapy, it works by suffocating and dehydrating soft-bodied insects. The formulation coats the pests, disrupting their respiration and digestion, leading to their eventual demise. This method is highly effective because it tackles the pests directly, preventing them from causing further damage to your plants. Plus, it leaves no harmful residues, ensuring your garden remains safe and healthy.

See more on How it Works here and Instructions here.

common garden plants

Protecting Flowering Plants

Popular garden plants like roses, petunias, and geraniums are beloved for their beauty and the charm they add to any garden. However, these lovely flowers often attract unwelcome pests. Let's explore how you can protect these flowering plants from common invaders and keep them looking stunning all season long.

common garden plants

Common Pests Affecting Popular Garden Flowers

Roses are classic garden favorites, loved for their beauty and fragrance. Unfortunately, they often attract pests like aphids, which can quickly colonize new growth, causing leaves to curl and flowers to deform. Spider mites are another frequent invader, especially in hot, dry weather. They create fine webs on the undersides of leaves, leading to stippling damage and eventual leaf drop.

common garden plants

Petunias, with their wide array of colors and continuous blooms, are susceptible to pests like thrips, which can cause significant damage by feeding on the flower petals, leading to discolored and deformed blooms. Aphids also love petunias and can spread quickly if not controlled.

Geraniums are hardy plants that are relatively easy to grow, but they are not immune to pest problems. Whiteflies are a common nuisance for geraniums, feeding on the undersides of leaves and excreting honeydew, which can attract sooty mold. Caterpillars and budworms can also pose a threat, chewing through leaves and flowers.

common garden plants

Tips for Protecting Flowering Plants

Regular Inspection: One of the best ways to keep your flowering plants safe from pests is through regular inspection. Make it a habit to check your plants at least once a week. Look for signs of pests such as discolored leaves, curled foliage, or the presence of honeydew. Early detection can help you manage pests before they become a severe problem.

Proper Watering and Feeding: Healthy plants are more resilient to pest attacks. Ensure your flowers are getting the right amount of water and nutrients. For instance, roses benefit from deep watering once a week rather than frequent shallow watering. Feed your plants with a balanced fertilizer to promote strong growth and flowering.

Apply our Natural Plant Protector: Applying our Natural Plant Protector can help keep your flowering plants free from common garden pests. Remember to spray thoroughly, covering all parts of the plant, especially the undersides of leaves where they love to hide.

common garden plants

How to Maintain Beautiful Blooms Throughout the Season

Deadheading: Regularly remove spent blooms from your beautiful flowers. This not only keeps your garden looking tidy but also encourages the plant to produce more flowers. For roses, cut just above a set of five leaves. Petunias and geraniums will also benefit from regular deadheading to prolong their blooming period.

Pruning: Pruning helps to shape your plants, improve air circulation, and remove any diseased or damaged parts. For example, roses should be pruned in early spring to remove dead wood and encourage new growth. Geraniums can be pruned back to promote bushier growth and more flowers.

Mulching: Apply a layer of mulch around your plants to help retain moisture, suppress weeds, and regulate soil temperature. Organic mulches like compost or shredded bark are excellent choices. Mulching also helps improve soil quality as it decomposes, providing your plants with additional nutrients.

Protecting During Adverse Weather: Flowering plants can be sensitive to extreme weather conditions. During hot summer days, provide some shade for your petunias and geraniums to prevent sun scorch. In the event of a cold snap, cover your roses with a frost cloth to protect the buds from freezing.

Proper Spacing: Ensure your plants have enough space to grow. Crowded plants are more susceptible to pest infestations and fungal diseases due to poor air circulation. Follow the recommended spacing guidelines for each type of plant. For instance, roses typically need to be spaced about 2-3 feet apart.

common garden plants

Caring for Shrubs and Vines

Whether you're nurturing flowering vines like clematis or growing hardy shrubs such as hydrangeas and lilacs, these plants can bring vertical beauty to your garden. However, they face unique challenges that require careful management.

Shrubs and vines are prone to pests and diseases due to their dense foliage and, in the case of vines, their climbing nature. For instance, the thick leaves of hydrangeas can create a humid environment that attracts spider mites, while the climbing stems of grape vines can become pathways for aphids and other pests. Ensuring thorough coverage with our natural and organic pesticide can effectively combat these issues, especially during peak pest seasons.

Maintaining soil health is also crucial. Plant shrubs and vines in well-draining soil enriched with organic matter to provide essential nutrients. Adjust soil pH as needed, hydrangeas, for instance, thrive in slightly acidic soil with additions like peat moss or composted leaves. Regular pruning is essential to promote air circulation and light penetration. Properly trained grapevines are less likely to suffer from fungal diseases, ensuring healthier growth and easier inspection for pests. Prune shrubs before new growth begins in late winter or early spring.

Water deeply but infrequently to encourage deep root growth and prevent root diseases. Hydrangeas and grapevines benefit from consistent moisture but need intervals of drying out to thrive.

common garden plants

Caring for Fruit Plants

Growing your own fruits, whether it’s juicy strawberries, zesty citrus trees, or crisp apple trees, can be incredibly rewarding. However, fruit plants often attract a variety of pests and require specific care to produce healthy, delicious harvests.

Aphids on Citrus Trees: Apply our Natural Plant Protector thoroughly to prevent and control aphids.

Slugs and Snails on Strawberries: Handpicking these pests early in the morning or late in the evening can be effective. You can also create barriers using crushed eggshells or diatomaceous earth around the plants.

Codling Moths on Apple Trees: To prevent these moths, use pheromone traps to disrupt their mating cycle. Regularly inspect your apples for signs of infestation and remove any affected fruits to prevent the larvae from maturing and spreading.

common garden plants

Tips for Ensuring Healthy Growth

Soil Preparation: Fruit plants thrive in well-draining, nutrient-rich soil. Amend the soil with compost or well-rotted manure before planting. Citrus trees prefer slightly acidic soil, so adding composted pine needles can help maintain the right pH.

Watering: Fruit plants generally require consistent moisture. Water deeply and regularly, especially during dry spells. For strawberries, avoid overhead watering to reduce the risk of fungal diseases.

Pruning and Thinning: Regular pruning helps improve air circulation and light penetration, reducing the risk of diseases. For apple trees, thinning the fruit early in the season can help prevent overburdening the branches and ensure larger, healthier apples.

Protecting During Harvest Time: As your fruits ripen, they can attract birds and other animals. Use netting to protect your berries and fruits. Harvest your fruits as soon as they are ripe to prevent them from being damaged by pests.

common garden plants

Vegetable Garden Pest Control

Few things rival the satisfaction of harvesting fresh tomatoes, crisp cucumbers, or vibrant bell peppers straight from your garden. Yet, these beloved veggies can fall prey to a range of pests that threaten your harvest. 


Tomatoes are cherished for their versatility and homegrown flavor but can attract pests like aphids, tomato hornworms, and whiteflies. Aphids cluster on new growth, sapping sap and weakening plants. Tomato hornworms, large green caterpillars, can defoliate plants rapidly. Whiteflies feed on leaf undersides, causing yellowing and drop. 

Bell Peppers

Bell peppers are susceptible to pests such as aphids, spider mites, and flea beetles. Aphids and spider mites damage plants by sucking sap, leading to yellowing and stunted growth. Flea beetles create small holes in leaves, weakening plants and reducing yields.

To protect bell peppers, apply our Natural Plant Wash to manage aphids and spider mites thoroughly. Use row covers to shield young plants from flea beetles, and consider planting companion flowers like nasturtiums to naturally deter pests.


Cucumbers face challenges from pests like cucumber beetles and diseases like powdery mildew. Cucumber beetles chew on leaves and spread bacterial wilt, while powdery mildew appears as a white coating, affecting plant health.

To prevent powdery mildew, ensure good air circulation by spacing plants and pruning crowded foliage. Apply Lost Coast Plant Therapy to combat mildew effectively.

See our guide on growing a thriving vegetable garden here.

common garden plants

Enhancing Your Garden Design

Imagine a garden filled with vibrant colors from showy begonias and purple flowers, to the subtle elegance of white flowers and green leaves. With the right care and natural products, you can create a beautiful space that will flourish throughout the summer and beyond.

If you're planning to enhance your garden design, consider incorporating a variety of plants such as dwarf shrubs, climbers, and aromatic herbs. These plants add diversity and visual interest, transforming your garden into a delightful display. Utilizing raised beds can improve plant management by enhancing drainage and accessibility, while potted plants facilitate seamless integration of new additions into your existing garden layout.

For those looking to grow a cottage garden, think about adding herbaceous perennials and ground cover plants. These low-growing plants can fill in spaces beautifully and help reduce weed growth. Additionally, consider adding eye-catching focal points with trees and shrubs that come in a variety of hues and forms.

See how to design a stunning flower garden from scratch here.

Visiting your local garden center can help you find the perfect plants for your garden. From variegated foliage to sweetly scented blooms, you’ll find many varieties to suit your taste and gardening needs.

common garden plants


Creating and maintaining a healthy garden, whether with perennial plants, annuals, fruit trees, veggies, or evergreens, begins with effective pest control practices. By implementing the tips provided for protecting flowering plants, caring for shrubs and vines, and managing vegetable garden pests, you can cultivate a vibrant and flourishing garden. Regular monitoring, early intervention, and the use of natural and organic pest control products like our Natural Plant Protector will ensure your garden remains a sanctuary of health and beauty. 

Remember, the key to a successful garden lies in selecting plants that thrive in your specific conditions, whether full sun or partial shade. Regular maintenance tasks like trimming and deadheading will keep your plants neat and maximize their potential.

Embrace natural and sustainable gardening practices to create a garden that not only looks stunning but is also safe for your family and the environment. Start your planning early, explore the diverse range of plants suited to your garden, and with dedication and the right tools, transform your outdoor space into a year-round haven of beauty and vitality.

common garden plants


What are the best perennials for my garden?

Perennials are garden plants that return year after year. Some of the best perennials include geraniums, which are known for their resilience and beautiful blooms. You might also consider planting roses for their classic beauty and fragrance, or blue flowers like delphiniums and cornflowers to add a pop of color. These plants are available in a wide variety of types, ensuring there's something perfect for every garden design.

Which types of plants are best for shaded areas?

For areas that receive part shade, consider planting ferns, hostas, and impatiens. These plants thrive in lower light conditions and can add texture and color to shaded parts of your garden. Hydrangeas, with their large flower spikes, are also an excellent choice for shaded areas and come in various colors, including white and pink.

What are the best climbing plants for my garden?

Climbing plants, or climbers, can add vertical interest to your garden and are perfect for covering walls, fences, and trellises. Some of the best climbers include clematis, with its stunning flower spikes, and climbing roses, which can produce beautiful blooms all summer long. Jasmine is another excellent choice, known for its aromatic flowers.

common garden plants

What are the benefits of planting in raised beds?

Raised beds offer several advantages for growing a variety of plants. They provide superior drainage, crucial for plants such as geraniums and roses that are sensitive to waterlogged soil. Additionally, raised beds can be filled with high-quality soil more easily and are simpler to maintain.

What should I consider when ordering plants by mail order?

Mail order is a convenient way to access a wide variety of plants, from rare perennials to popular ornamental species. When ordering plants by mail, it's crucial to choose a reputable supplier. Ensure that the plants are available and in stock before ordering. Upon arrival, check the condition of the plants immediately and follow the supplier’s instructions for acclimatizing them to your garden. 

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Additional Resources 

How to Start an Organic Garden - Good Housekeeping

Garden Pests and Diseases - University of California

Powdery Mildew- Almanac

Adding Flowers to Your Vegetable Garden - The University of Vermont

Starting an Organic Garden - USDA

Vegetable Garden Ideas - Architectural Digest

How to recognize and manage spider mites in the home garden - Oregon State University

Thrips - Texas Extension Entomology

Thrips: Biology and Rose Pests - NC State Extension

Aphids in home yards and gardens - University of Minnesota