One of the most harmful blights to your vegetable garden, biting holes in leaves and marring the flesh of produce, are bugs or other pests that might target your little patch of greenery.
We all know that commercially available bug spray is one of the best ways to get rid of these pests, but for a safer alternative, try one of these all-natural home remedy recipes to discourage the bugs from targeting your tomatoes.
These remedies are also safe around pets or children, so you can always have peace of mind. Different mixtures are to deter different species, so educate yourself about all of them.
1. Herbal Water
Different herbs can prevent your plants from being targeted by different pests. Sage, basil, peppermint and lavender are all popular herbs to use in this mixture.
It is pretty easy, whether you want to use fresh plants or ready-made, commercially available essential oils.
In five cups of water, you want to soak one cup of crushed leaves or other trimmings and let it soak overnight. If you prefer to use the oil, one drop per cup of water is recommended. It can be used immediately.
Decant this herb water mixture into a spray bottle and use it to liberally coat each of the vegetable plants that are in your garden, coating the top and bottom of leaves and the stems or stalks.
These plants can also be planted around the edge of your garden as a beautiful way to repel insects. Now that’s a win-win!
If you find that many of your unwelcome guests like to chew the leaves on your plants, a nicotine mixture is all you need to drive them away.
You will crush up one cup of tobacco leaves (or grind up 5-7 cigarettes if that is all you can find), mix it with a quarter cup of dish soap and add it to a gallon of water.
Let this mixture sit for 30 minutes, then strain the large chunks out of it and spray it on the leaves of your vegetable plants.
Garlic is like one of those miracle nutrients we have. It can add a great depth of flavor to many meals, it is great when used as a tea to alleviate headaches, and it turns out you can use garlic to defend your garden from insects, a single clove being an excellent natural home remedy.
This natural home remedy is so simple, you just immerse a whole, peeled clove of garlic in the soil of the vegetable plants that you want to protect.
4. Neem Oil Spray
This exotic sounding natural home remedy is derived from the seeds of the neem tree, a plant native to Southeast Asia. Neem oil is available commercially, but the basic process involves crushing up the neem seeds, and letting them soak and steep in vegetable oil overnight.
This solution can then be strained, to get the seed kernels out, then sprayed directly onto your vegetable plants. This is one of the most versatile bug deterrents, working on many species of creatures that might target your garden and the plants growing within it.
5. Soapy Water
This is by far one of the easiest natural home remedy to keep insects off of your vegetable plants. Simply mix about five tablespoons of your favorite dish soap with about 4 cups of water. Use this solution to spray your vegetable plants every day.
The soap will have a drying effect on the bodies of the insects, being a completely natural insecticide that is safe for any pets or children who might be going through your garden.
Of course we do not mean a shot from your favorite beverage, but rather rubbing alcohol, or isopropyl alcohol. Make sure it is at least 70% alcohol, as it is the high alcohol content that will have the most beneficial effect as a natural home remedy keeping bugs off your vegetable plants.
Use one part alcohol to two parts of water and mix s much as you will need. The high alcohol content means that this will evaporate quickly, so it is best to spray it on at least once a day and you may need to make more of this mixture often.
7. Pyrethrum and Dish Soap Spray
Even though it may sound like it contains a lot of harmful chemicals, pyrethrum is actually made of dried chrysanthemum blooms. The dried flowers are crushed into a fine powder that is available in the gardening sections of many home improvement stores.
This natural home remedy is actually used by many pest control services as a measure to control mosquito populations, as it acts on the nervous systems of pests, freezing their bodies and making them unable to move.
Once you have the powder, dilute it with dish soap and warm water to create a sprayable thickness.
Use this to deter bugs from bothering your vegetable plants.
8. Pepper Spray
This one may make you think about personal defensive items, but pepper spray is actually a very popular natural home remedy to rid plants of insects. Each kind of pepper contains capsaicin, a chemical that is really good at repelling bugs.
Paprika and ginger also contain this chemical, making them excellent substitutions for this pepper spray.
Simply mix two tablespoons of your preferred ground spice with a gallon of warm water, let it sit for half an hour, then use it to spray down your vegetable plants.
9. Beer or Grape Juice
Slugs and snails love these strong smelling drinks. To prevent them from chewing through delicate new stems and the lower layer of leaves, set saucers of these liquids down near the base of plants.
The snails and slugs will be lured into the shallow bowls and will be trapped there.
Anything with a strong smell is good. Orange rinds also make excellent traps, and they can decay away into nothing, adding nutrients to your soil in the process.
10. A Heavy Downpour
As a gardener, you rejoice at the thought of rain because of how nourishing it can be for your vegetable plants.
This natural home remedy is one of the most natural because it is just a part of the natural climate process on this earth. A heavy spray of rain, either from the clouds or from your hose, can both wash off the plants, clearing them of any exterior bugs, but can also serve to provide hydration to the soil and keep it moist and better able to protect your plant.
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