Applying Organic Pesticides

Organic pesticides are being increasingly used in household gardens. They present a safer and more effective alternative to chemical pesticides that are known to cause long-term damage to the soil. Most organically-made preparations for the gardening soil serve a dual purpose, i.e. they provide nourishment along with protecting the plants against insects and diseases. However, there are some very strong organic pesticides, specifically manufactured for pest removal. Organic pesticides are made through a simple mechanism wherein certain compounds derived from dried or decomposed organic matter are converted into a liquid solution or a thick powder. They protect the plants against pests through a variety of naturally-active elements like enzymes and minerals. Applying organic pesticides in your garden is not demanding as long as some basic guidelines are followed.

Getting Started: Procuring Organic Pesticide

This may seem a bit too obvious to mention, but the fact is that a large proportion of pesticides are being sold under the pretence of having an organic ‘effect’ or being ‘organically made’. The simplest way to ascertain that you are buying genuine organic pesticides is to look for certifications by agencies like the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) or the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA). If you want to buy your pesticide from a local farm that doesn't follow the retail-related certification guidelines, then you should demand a list of the pesticide’s ingredients. Then, run a quick check of the organic compatibility of these ingredients on websites of the above-mentioned agencies. Your organic pesticide should be affordable, safe for human contact and easy-to-store for repeated usage.

Creating Your Pesticide Mix

It is common knowledge that different organic pesticides are mixed together to create a more potent product. Each of the organically-produced pesticides has a predominance of certain elements. To create a more comprehensive solution, it is advised to mix them according to your requirement. Some common examples include: 

  • For protecting plants against slugs, aphids, maggots, caterpillars and other common garden pests, use a pesticide mix that has a heavy dose of garlic.
  • Hot pepper-based pesticides are used for protecting the flowering plants.
  • Powdered diatomaceous earth is added to keep away pests like garden bugs.
  • Neem is a natural disinfectant that is often mixed with retailed organic pesticides. It is particularly useful for roses and household herbs.

Spraying Organic Pesticide

The pesticide solution has to be sprayed on the leaves of the plants. For this, unused spray bottles can be used. Local spraying to start the process is a good idea, i.e. minimal, superficial spraying. However, once the first dose of the pesticide has been administered, continue by spraying on the upper and lower parts of the plant leaf. It is best not to spray the pesticide during the noon time when the sunlight is at its maximum. This often causes sun scalding due to the presence of natural compounds in the organic pesticide. A pump sprayer can be used if you want to dispense your pesticide across a wider patch with minimal effort, but this is not useful for spraying taller plants or trees.