Colorful California Landscape: A Water-Friendly Garden
Colorful California Landscape:  A Water-Friendly Garden

Natural Pesticide Recipes

Photo above - aphids chewing on a plant.

Simple Insecticidal Soap

Mix 1 tablespoon of Dr. Bronner's Pure Castille liquid soap in 64 ounces of water.  Pour into pump sprayer.  Thoroughly soak the tops and bottoms of leaves.

Garlic and Chile Insecticidal Soap Spray

Fend off pesky insects with this garlic and chile insecticial soap spray.  By Susan Belsinger and Tina Marie Wilcox (Mother Earth Living website).

  • 10 to 12 large cloves garlic
  • 4 to 6 hot chile peppers, dried or fresh
  • Generous 2 cups water
  • 1 Tablespoon liquid castile soap
  • 10 drops cinnamon, vetiver or eucalyptus essentional oil, optional
  1. Put garlic, chiles and water into a blender and puree contents until foamy
  2. Let mixture stand at least 2 hours or overnight.  When mixture settles, you will have a coral-colored liquid with sediment at bottom.
  3. Pour through a strainer lined with fine cheesecloth (or through a coffee filter or jelly bag) to remove particles that could block the sprayer valve.
  4. Pour concentrate into a jar with a plastic lid (not metal), add soap, stir and label.
  5. Store in a cool, dark place until needed, up to a few months.  For a 1-quart or 1-liter spray bottle, use 2 Tablespoons concentrate and fill the rest of the bottle with water.
  6. Spray plants late in the day, so the hot sun can't burn the plants.  Cover the top and bottom of leaves.  Reapply Garlic and Chile Insectidal Soap as often as needed, but allow several days between applications.
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Stewardship requires the recognition that we are all caretakers of the environment and economy for the benefit of present and future generations. We must balance the impacts of today's decisions with the needs of future generations. - The Minnesota Round Table on Sustainable Development (1998)