Why spend a lot of money on commercial organic pesticides when you can easily and cheaply make your own at home? You will be surprised to know how many items that you have around the house can be used for organic pest control in your own garden. Here are just a few ideas.
Garlic is technically not a pesticide because it does not usually kill but it repels many pests. They just don’t like the taste or the smell. You can use garlic for pest control in two ways.
First, planting garlic around other plants will keep many pests off. Garlic planted around tomatoes can prevent red spider mite. (Salt water spray is also good against spider mite.) Around fruit trees, garlic plants can repel borer beetles whose larvae would bore into your tree trunk, damaging or even killing the tree.
Second, you can make an organic pest control spray from garlic blended with water or oil. Use the water mixture directly on growing vegetables or flowers to prevent rabbits and other invaders from snacking on your plants. Use the oil mixture to spray onto ponds. It will form a film on the surface of the pond that can kill mosquitoes.
Boric acid (known in other forms as boracic acid, borates or borax)
This was a common product found in most households until recent years and you can still buy it in drugstores or online. It is often used as an ingredient in industrial pesticides, but it is a natural product mined in the Mojave desert.
Boric acid has anti fungal properties so it can be used to get rid of mildew and other molds and fungi. In powdered form it can be very effective against ants, termites, ticks, fleas, bedbugs, slugs, earwigs, beetles, roaches and even scorpions. It will also kill crickets and grasshoppers.
Boric acid is mildly toxic to humans or pets, although not much more dangerous than table salt. A pet would have to eat a lot to suffer symptoms, and humans even more. However, do not take internally and do not use in large quantities on plants that pets will lick or eat.
Liquid detergent and other soaps can be effective sprayed onto roses and other plants that suffer from aphids or other small fly infestations. It can also work well against slugs. For extra punch, add equal quantities of hot chili peppers, horseradish (roots and leaves), spearmint and green onion tops to your soapy water.
Many home made organic pest control products do not kill the insects and other pests, but simply prevent them from coming near your plants. This will be important to you if you prefer not to kill any living beings for religious or ethical reasons – or just for good karma. However, other products such as boric acid are true pesticides. You can also find many commercial organic pesticides for sale either online or in your local area.