Picture of Make an all purpose organic pesticide from vegetables
This instructable will show how I made a cheap, all-purpose organic pesticide for my herb & vegetable garden. It can be used on a variety of insects that live in the dirt or on the plants including worms, mites and other parasites.

This entire pesticide will eventually break down and be reduced to nothing, so it is OK to eat any herbs or vegetables that are growing. This is mainly intended for indoor use, but I see no reason why it wouldn't work outdoors as well.

Step 1: Materials

Picture of Materials
The materials used to make the pesticide should be easy to obtain.

You will need:

  • an empty & clean gallon jug (such as a milk jug)
  • a spray bottle with spray nozzle
  • a funnel
  • a piece of cloth such as a shirt or bandanna
  • a pot that can hold 1 gallon
  • 2 small onions
  • a jalapeño pepper
  • a clove of garlic
  • some dish soap

Take 1 gallon of warm water, dump it in a pot and you're ready to begin making the pesticide.
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EllenC82 months ago

Sirve el jabón hecho en casa? con base de aceite vegetal o sebo animal?

Sería cuestión de probar si a los mosquitos le resulta atractivo, pero difícil de digerir.

Keep in mind it is the soap that actually works as the insecticide. It takes a very minute quantity to plug the breathing holes along the bugs abdomen. That is why there are things like Murphies insecticidal soap that has been around for over 100 years. Everything else in this appears to be something that makes it uncomfortable for the bug to stick around.

cjb844 years ago
im not sure you should be calling this "organic". Last i checked there are some pretty nasty chemicals in dish soap that arent organic. Otherwise it sounds like a great idea. i will try it without the soap.
SaiC3 cjb841 month ago
Organic doesn't mean no chemicals, it means using ingredients that are harmless to non-pest species and especially adult-stage bugs and insects as well as the environment itself. Dishwashing liquid might taste nasty to us in concentrated form but it's harmless in dilute quantities and, unless you want to drown your plants, they won't be getting that much. Everything in nature is a chemical and many of these natural chemicals are harmful to some species or the other. How do you think plants propagated without us? If you used cocoa powder in a plant food formula (lots of nitrogen rich compounds), that could be seen as non-organic b/c the theobromine in it is harmful to most canid and felid species and some birds and rodents. You might have your own interpretation of "organic" and it's something of a misnomer b/c artificial chemicals can be branded "organic", but we've got 7 billion mouths to feed and the vast majority can't afford to pick and choose like we can.
There are organic dish soaps like the brand Method. It's honestly better than other soaps
jb-5 jtalbot5225 months ago

Method is an alright detergent but it is not organic.

jb-5 jb-55 months ago

Mrs Meyers is good too. Plant based sucfunctants.

same here --w/o soap first

You will not get the same coverage or staying power.

jb-5 cjb845 months ago

Depends on the brand of soap you use. Mrs Meyers, Dr Bronner, Eco are fine, to name a few. The soap is minimal, no cause for alarm. Just use GOOD soap.

These brands are less drying for your hands too, even with being effective on grease.

Try castile soap such as Dr Bronner's. It's pure vegetable oil and sodium hydroxide (plus water for the liquid version). True soap is some sort of oil/fat mixed with sodium hydroxide/lye and allowed to react. I love using it and the lavender version with the essential oil works as a mild natural antibiotic that should be safe even for gray water systems. It's highly concentrated and a small bottle lasted me more than a year even with my husband doing dishes.
actually seventh generation is dish soap made with all organic ingredients. Its supposed to be eco friendly. we use it our house hold because of the septic tank
beamerpook3 months ago

Might I suggest using a wire mesh strainer called a "spider" to scoop out the pulp? You can find it at kitchen equipment stores, or sometimes even the kitchen equipment aisle at local stores.

How often does one need to apply this to herbs?

jb-55 months ago

For anyone worried about the dish soap:

For a gallon of solution use about 5 drops.

Use a plant based dish detergent. Not Dawn, Ajax, etc. Use lemon scented if possible, it also repels pests.

very cool we will have to try it. do you think it would work on regular flowers and 'green' plants?

Queen E uses it in her gardens at Buckingham Palace.

alee523 years ago
The dill in my garden went wild, grew about two foot tall. I let it go to seed so it would re- seed the herb patch and notice it is covered in lady beetles, yellow ones! Hope they gobble the aphids big time. Will let u know if the organic spray saves my cauliflowers which are being decimated by cabbage moths.
actually they say having lady bugs in your garden -- food or flower -- is actually good for them like having earth worms in your soil is good for your plants growing in said soil

That is why alee52 is happy.

jjone538 alee523 years ago
Garden Moths Are Pretty Annoying
TimmyMiller4 years ago
is it safe to use on grapes?
iPodGuy (author)  TimmyMiller4 years ago
Should be ok
You might want to rinse the grapes before eating, especially if you spray them shortly before harvest....I learned the hard way that the tiniest residue of hot pepper can be painful....but I'm also very sensitive to capcasin (spelling?) and can't even allow hot peppers in the house, sweet peppers are hot enough for me to deal with.

Who doesn't wash produce before eating?

jb-5 TimmyMiller5 months ago

They are a fruit correct?

solive4 years ago
Besides as a pest repellent, essential oils play important role as a attractant for several pests. You can find the complete article here at Indonesia Essential Oils:
jb-5 solive5 months ago

Will check this site. Great idea to attract pollinators, hopefully.

jb-55 months ago

Great recipe, ipodguy. Queen E uses a garlic soultion on her roses.

jakoby3 years ago
I'd be careful when spraying something containing dish soap on your plants. Dish soap can remove the waxy plant cuticle that covers leaves and the like, making plants more vulnerable to viruses, fungi, and other nasties that you don't want. In fact, that's the main idea behind the organic herbicides that use vinegar; the soap removes the cuticle allowing for better absorption of the vinegar, which kills the plant.
jb-5 jakoby5 months ago

The soap is minimal. Only to relieve water tension so it coats plants with solution. This trick has been used forever w/o problems.

losregni3 years ago
I believe the soap may be used as a "sticker" which helps the mix stick to the leaves longer. We use sticker on the farm when we are spraying pastures.

jb-5 losregni5 months ago

Soap decrease the tension of water, allowing it to coat the plant & not just run off.

bluelamb15 5 months ago
I made this for my my sunflowers daisies and tomatoesI forgot to set off the stove and it almost killed my cat Lol...... I also added cayenne pepper to give it a kick
videoman224 years ago
Will this work to kill beetles? I grow pumpkins and tomatoes along with variouse other veggies,herbs,vining plants, tropical plants, succulents and cacti. Just curiouse if i could use it on everything.
Technically, this counts as a repellent rather than a pesticide-alluims (garlic/onions) and peppers won't actually kill much of anything but will certainly chase them away and not come back (the soap can kill some types of tiny insects but not very effectively). You might want to look into using pyretheum (my spelling might be off) aka "painted daisy" flowers in the mix which will kill insects yet break down within hours but you have to make sure to use it only in the evening when the good bugs such as bees are asleep or you'll kill them too. The amounts to be used vary and I don't remember them off the top of my head...my plants haven't blossomed this year for some reason and it's my first year trying to grow them myself so I haven't made any from scratch yet. It's an insect neurotoxin and can be poisonous to humans when fresh or in solution but once sprayed on plants in the evening it breaks down so fast that by morning the veggies/fruit are usually considered safe to eat.

Would marigolds work?

daviddunbar111 months ago

thank you for the info. Great solution! Love it is natural.

MikeBav1 year ago

Awesome tip! Thanks for sharing will bookmark this page for future reference Best, 911bug.com, Phoenix Pest Control

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