DIY Organic Pesticides and Insecticides

Here are some tips found at

Pesticide Recipes

The key to repelling pests from your garden or plants is make them have an appalling taste or something to kill the pests with harming the plants. A key ingredient to many homemade pesticides I found was soap and strong tasting products like garlic and peppers. The following recipes will keep most pests off of your plants:

Oil Mixture

  • 1 cup cooking oil ( i.e. canola or vegetable )
  • 1 tablespoon liquid dishwashing soap
  • Use 2 ½ teaspoons of this mixture in 1 cup of water

Spray on the surface and underside of leaves to coat insects in various stages of development.

This mixture is especially good with eggs and immature bugs. Be careful on the type of liquid soap you choose. I had good luck with dishwashing soap with no additional additives like anti-bacterial ingredients. I accidentally used it with on that had them in it and it almost killed a plant of mine.

Soap Mixture

  • A few teaspoons of liquid dishwashing soap
  • 1 gallon of water

Spray on the surface and underside of infested foliage. The soap acts to paralyze insects, which prevents them from feeding. The pests eventually die of starvation. For heavy infestations spray every 2 to 3 days for 2 weeks.

This is a very generic mixture that can fight off most any insects. Make sure to use a light liquid soap here as well to ensure not to kill your plants.

Garlic/Pepper Mixture

  • 1/2 cup hot peppers of your choice
  • 1/2 cup garlic cloves ( onions will also do )
  • 2 cups water

Steep this mixture for 24 hours. An easy method for steeping the tea is to combine the ingredients in a clear glass jar, seal, and set in a sunny location. Strain and spray onto foliage.

This is another good general mixture that will fight off most bugs.

To find additional natural homemade pesticides, please visit Garden Volunteers.

Repellent Recipes

Repellents seem to use the sense of smell and vision to detract pests away.


They are one of the most annoying pests that always seem to find a way to bite you when you are out side during a nice day. Some simple ingredients you can put on exposed skin to detract them from biting you

  • citronella oil
  • vinegar

You could also try wearing pastel colors that will distract the mosquitos from wanting to even look at you. Another way to try to lower the population is to attract more birds and dragonflies.

Fleas and Ticks

This is more for your pets, but one method is try to rub talc on your pet or supplementing their diets with garlic or Vitamin B to distract them from getting on your pet’s skin.


To prevent those pesky ants from entering you house, make a line of either cream of tartar, red chili pepper or paprika to stop them in their tracks.

To keep most pests out of your home, just make sure you keep all crumbs cleaned up and do not leave any open food containers laying around the house. Also, make sure to take the trash out often and be sure to clean on a regular basis. To find additional repellent ideas, the EPA has a great guide to keeping those pests away from you and your house.


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