What are the Different Types of Organic Garden Pest Control?

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  • Written By: Anna T.
  • Edited By: Melissa Wiley
  • Last Modified Date: 20 November 2019
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Some of the different types of organic garden pest control involve the use of smells, natural oils, and vegetable-based soaps to either repel or kill garden pests. Odors from things like garlic, rhubarb, and fish tend to naturally repel pests. Insects that do not have hard shells are typically vulnerable to certain types of oils, including mineral and vegetable oil, which can suffocate them when applied. Insecticidal soaps made from ingredients derived from vegetables can be added to garden sprayers and will normally bind to the leaves of plants, which should either keep most bugs away or kill them if they come in contact with the soap. These methods of organic garden pest control are designed to keep bugs away while protecting crops from the harsh, chemical ingredients that are typically found inside many pest control products.

Smells are one of the preferred methods of organic garden pest control for many people who practice this form of gardening. It is possible to create garden sprays with garlic and water to coat plants in for keeping bugs away. Bugs generally can't stand the smell or taste of garlic, and the scent might even be suffocating to them. Rhubarb sprays are also popular for repelling insects and are typically used in much the same way as garlic sprays. Some people also use fish fertilizer in their gardens because the smell repels pests, and the oily nature of the substance might also suffocate certain insects.


The application of natural oils to plants is another potentially effective method of organic garden pest control. Mineral oil, vegetable oil, and cottonseed oil are three popular oil choices to use in the garden. These oils do not harm plants, but they are capable of smothering certain insects that find their way into the garden, specifically soft-shelled insects like aphids and mealy bugs. The oil can be diluted in water and poured into a spray bottle. When the oil is sprayed directly on the affected plants, the insects that are trying to eat the plants will usually come in contact with the oil and suffocate.

Another organic garden pest control option is insecticidal soap. Even though many people use insecticidal soaps in non-organic gardening, chemical-free versions of this soap are available for organic gardening. The non-organic versions typically contain soaps made from the oils of vegetables and contain no harsh, chemical-based ingredients. The soap can get inside the respiratory systems of pests that are eating plants and leaves covered in the soap, which should kill them. This method typically has to be repeated every other day because the soap is effective only when it is wet.



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