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Timely protection


Meat-free pet food is already available. But insects aren’t so popular with fruit and veg.

Now, a team from NC State University has developed a fabric that protects plants from small insects without using pesticides.

Key to their approach: time. If insects don’t find food quickly enough, they either give up or die.

The team sandwiched a structured, knitted layer upright between two layers of clear netting, creating a maze-like path for insects to navigate.

Potted cabbage plants housed within the cover were completely protected from hungry, young caterpillars. Open-air plants grew almost three times heavier.

Yarn from recycled plastic could make the water- and sunlight-permeable cover even more sustainable.

This paper is a natural protection for potatoes.

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