Garden lore: another use for gingko leaves

Ginkgo leaves

Ginkgo leaves

Bay leaves – from the culinary bay tree or Laurus nobilis – are so widely recommended as a means of discouraging pantry moth that I assume this lore has been tested by time. I have to admit to not having tried it myself but I think the idea is that you strew bay leaves in your pantry. Given that pantry moth can cost quite a bit in spoiled food, it may be worth a try if you are dogged by these pervasive critters.

I had to burn books. so badly infested were they

I had to burn books. so badly infested were they

What I did not know until I read this month’s NZ Gardener magazine is that gingko leaves are reputed to repel silver fish and whatever moth it is that likes to lay its eggs in books. I shall be trying this but I imagine it will take a year or two before I can comment on its veracity. We are in the process of building a designated library area and this has involved removing every book in the house into stacks. I was a bit shocked to find three titles amongst the teen fiction in our son’s bedroom which were disintegrating due to insect infestation. Poor Philip Pullman and Robert Jordan – such an ignominious end to be burned but inspection ascertained that nobody would ever want to read these books again. I shall be placing ginkgo leaves inside the books that were adjacent to these titles and particularly inside one which is only lightly damaged.

Now I guess the question to be asked is whether gingko leaves will also repel pantry moth.

It was only last year when I was still writing for the Waikato Times, that I featured the fascinating gingko trees.

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