Sometimes plants need a helping hand to stop infestations from bugs and fungi. This cheap and easy-to-make recipe for a natural and organic pesticide and fungicide from uses safe ingredients from your bathroom and kitchen.

You will need:

  • Organic liquid soap (this should be free from phosphates, ammonia and chlorine)
  • Organic vegetable oil
  • Baking soda
  • Water
  • One gallon container with sprayer

Add 2-3 tbsps of vegetable oil, 2-3 tbps of baking soda and 1-1.5 tsp of organic liquid soap to one gallon of water. Ideally use rainwater or tap water that has been sitting uncovered for a few hours. This allows the chlorine or any other chemical contaminant to evaporate away from the water.

Shake well and spray on plants. The soap acts as an insect repellent and the baking soda works as a fungicide. The oil helps retain the other active ingredients on the plant surfaces, and acts as an added pesticide by preventing insects from adhering to the plant. Cover the underside of the leaves as well as the tops.

Please note: I would not spray my plants with this mixture, or even with plain water, in full sun. Even water droplets can burn delicate leaves and petals when the sun is hot and at full strength. Choose a time when there is cloud cover or towards dusk.

Any excess liquid should be disposed of – don’t leave in the container for any length of time. Make up a fresh batch for when you need to reapply. A common question is how often should the pesticide be applied. Youtubegarden recommends once every two to four weeks throughout the season. Any more often and you may get a build up of soapy residue on the soil.

I find these sorts of recipes extremely useful. The ingredients are safe for pets and children and cheaply and easily available. The simplicity of the recipe is also very appealing. For anyone who wants to garden organically as part of their organic lifestyle, this recipe is one that is well worth having.

Filed under: Organic Farming

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