There are 2 things that I'm sure you know about me by now.
1) I'm frugal
2) I prefer to do things as natural as possible.
Pretty simple right? I try to do things the way my great-grandma did. She lived on a farm in the 1920's, and raised 6 kids on 1 income! Everything did double duty and it was done the cheapest way possible. I'm just like her! So I'm often looking for simple solutions instead of the expensive commercial crap the media tries to convince us we need now.
That type of search is exactly what led me to cinnamon as a remedy for what ails my plants. I mostly use it for seedlings, to prevent dampening off disease but it can be used several other ways. Here are my most common uses for cinnamon in the home & garden.
1) Seedlings. The term dampening off covers a range of diseases and that attack a seed/seedling either before or after germination and cause the seedling to die. They can be caused by several different fungus and soil conditions. A few years back I read that if you dust the soil with cinnamon it will prevent dampening off. I've been doing it since with great results! (this also gets rid of those little fungus gnats that somehow appear around seedling trays)
2) Wild mushrooms. Nothing worse then having to waste a beautiful day pulling mushrooms from the mulch in my flower beds. Mushrooms are fungus though, and by dusting cinnamon all over the mulch it helps to control mushroom growth.
3) Rooting hormone. Much cheaper then the chemical stuff they sell in the big box store and just as effective! Just apply cinnamon powder to the stem when you plant the cutting.
4) Ant deterrent. Ants do not like cinnamon! Sprinkle it in your greenhouse or around your garden beds to deter garden pests. It will not kill the ants, but they will stay away from it. Sprinkle it by your doors if ants are coming into your house. They really hate to cross a line of cinnamon!
5) Plant wounds. Overzealous pruning or a slip of the weed whacker and you'll have a plant with a wound that needs fixed up. Simply dust cinnamon on the wound to encourage healing and prevent fungal infection at the same time.
6) House plants. Cinnamon get's rid of molds and mildew in house plants too. Simply sprinkle a bit of cinnamon on the soil. It will also get rid of gnats if you happen to have them buzzing around your house plants. These are the same gnats seedlings get, the cinnamon destroys the fungus they feed on and they will die.
Cinnamon also has some amazing health benefits and best of all, I always find it at the dollar store! If your dollar store doesn't carry it or you just use a whole lot, you can get 5lbs of it here for $10.99. (cheapest I've found it anywhere) At that price and with these uses, what's not to love about cinnamon?
Want more frugal gardening tips? Check out: 7 Ways To Use Beer in the Garden.
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