Are you wondering why you would need a natural bug killer when you can use pesticides to get rid of wasps, roaches, grasshoppers, spiders, and mosquitoes? The truth is that while pesticides can kill the bugs that you don’t like, there are high chances that they are also killing beneficial insects, such as bees, butterflies that visit flowers, and spiders that eat wasps.
Moreover, the impact of a pesticide does not just end with one use. After it does its job, it seeps into the environment and the water system. This contamination may result in the death of fish and other bystanders. Not to mention, pesticides can also harm your health. You can’t spray it on the fruits and vegetables in your garden and then think about eating them, can you?
However, you can opt for natural bug killing alternatives to kill the insects and pests in your garden. Below are four recipes of bug killers that you can make with the ingredients present in your home.
1. Epsom Salts
Epsom salts can be used in the form of a liquid spray and a dry pesticide. You will be surprised to know the number of benefits it reaps when used in the garden. Not only does it deter bugs, but it also provides a beneficial dose of magnesium to the crops and plants in your garden.
To make this natural bug killer, you need:
- One cup of Epsom salts
- Five gallons of water
Dissolve the salts completely in the water. Then, transfer the mixture into a spray bottle. Go on to spray the mixture liberally in your garden.
The Epsom salts mixture helps get rid of beetles and slugs. It can even be stored in a cool, dark, dry place for multiple uses. If you do not wish to make a liquid mixture, sprinkle Epsom salts in your garden. Make sure to cover the base of the plants. This will ensure that the pests do not climb the plants’ stems from the ground.
This mixture will not only protect your plants but will also help them absorb different minerals from the soil, including sulfur, phosphorus, and nitrogen.
2. Food-Grade Diatomaceous Earth
A fine, white powder, food-grade diatomaceous earth consists of ground-up fossil remains of minuscule aquatic organisms.
The leftover skeletons of these organisms are believed to be loaded with silica. Silica is cylindrical in shape with sharp edges that can kill insects, parasites, and bugs.
Here are some bugs that food grade diatomaceous earth can get rid of:
- Control Earwigs
All you need to do is put the food grade diatomaceous earth in a shaker or bottle. You can also use it by hand. However, make sure to wear a dust mask not to irritate your nose and throat. Reapply this to the soil whenever it rains.
Food grade diatomaceous is also pet-friendly! You can use a tiny amount in your pet’s food to get rid of worms.
3. Garlic Bug Spray
The herbs lying around in your home make a strong DIY bug killer! Did you know that garlic has lots of medicinal uses? Since it is antibacterial, antiviral, and antifungal, you can use it to repel bugs in your garden.
To make a garlic bug spray, all you need is:
- 5 pieces of crushed garlic
- 1 quart of water
Leave this mixture overnight for a minimum of six hours. Then, throw in one teaspoon of dish soap into the mixture and strain all of it with a cheesecloth. This will help separate the garlic chunks from the water. You will be left with soapy water that can be poured out into a jug. Once done, fill the jug with fresh water.
This mixture can be sprayed on the fruits in your garden, including the vegetables and flowers, making them safe to ingest. However, this natural bug killer will get rid of good and bad insects. Hence, make sure only to use it in the infected areas of the garden.
If you want to store this mixture, make sure to do so in a dark, cool place. In fact, it is even recommended to store it in a jug which is dark in color. This will help protect your bug spray from the light.
4. Natural Hot Pepper
Commercial ads usually portray hot pepper sprays that can be used as a pesticide. Since these can be rather expensive at your local grocery store, you can also opt to make your own at home. However, a hot pepper spray can be dangerous, which is why you must protect your skin, eyes, nose, and mouth.
First off, start by wearing some protective equipment, including gloves and goggles. Chop two cups of hot peppers on a wooden chopping board. Then, use your food processor to mix:
- Two cups of chopped hot peppers
- One tablespoon of cayenne pepper
- One peeled clove of garlic
Make sure to mix this mixture well so that it is nicely pureed. Then, add four gallons of water and allow the mixture to stay in a jug for 24 hours. Use a cheesecloth to strain it (protect your eyes and skin!), and don’t forget to add three tablespoons of dish soap.
Transfer the soapy, hot mixture into a spray bottle, and feel free to spray it in your garden whenever needed.
Despite popular belief, natural bug killers are as effective as the pesticides that are available in stores. However, it should be remembered that the mixtures you make at home are not harmless, which is why you need to be cautious and attentive when making these natural pest control sprays.
If you overuse them, they can cause damage to your plants and crops. Hence, before spraying any mixture in your garden, always do a patch test in a small area. Ensure you protect your skin, eyes, and respiratory system, and keep your children and pets inside while you save your garden.