Homemade Insecticide Recipes

Many gardeners prefer to make their own insecticide rather than buying products from the nursery or garden store. This is a guide about homemade insecticide recipes.

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Tip: Dishsoap Insect Spray

By kathleen williams 76 1,661

I use soap to spray for insects in garden. Mix 1 tablespoon of liquid soap with water in a quart spray bottle from Dollar store. Spray once a week and after a rain.

By Kathleen from Dothan, AL


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Tip: Pick Pests Off Your Garden for Insect Spray

By Polly Levesque 28 28

If you have bugs in your garden, here's an easy, organic and free way to get rid of them. If you're squeamish about this, put on rubber gloves, garden gloves, or latex gloves and pluck the bugs off the plants, one species at a time, and put them in a cupful of water.


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Tip: Garden: Insecticide From Rhubarb Leaves

By Kathy 1

gardenRhubarb leaves can be used to make an effective organic insecticide (cabbage caterpillars, aphids, peach and cherry slug, etc).


  • rhubarb leaves
  • soap flakes
  • spray bottle


  1. Boil for about 15 or 20 minutes.

  2. Let cool

  3. Strain the liquid into container.

  4. Dissolve some soap flakes in this liquid and use it to spray against aphids.
Special Note: Do not eat leaves, they are poisonous.


By Kathy from New Zealand


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Question: Bug Killer Recipe

By Barbara Oakes 1

Q: My husband would like a recipe for making his own bug killer to use on tomatoes, potatoes and hostas. He would like a spray on pesticide if there is one available. Thank you so much.

Barb Zone: 4a

barbo37 from Fairview, MI

A: Barbo37,

There are many variations of this floating around in print and on the web, but here is another good all around recipe for repelling bugs:

  • 1 cup liquid dish soap (or Murphy's Oil Soap or baby shampoo)
  • 1 cup tobacco tea (3 fingers of chewing tobacco in a nylon stocking and soak it in a gallon of hot water until the mixture is dark in color)
  • 1 cup antiseptic mouthwash
  • 1/4 cup of Tabasco Sauce (or substitute chopped hot peppers)

Mix these ingredients in a 20-gallon hose end sprayer, filling the rest of the sprayer with water, and spray your plants. You can also reduce these measurements down to proportions that suit a hand held spray bottle. Slugs and snails love hosta, but they detest crossing sharp surfaces because it causes them injury. Prevent them from climbing up hosta plants by sprinkling eggshells or diatomaeous earth around the base. Round sandpaper disks also work well for this purpose. Cut a slit in used disks and wrap them around stems.

Good Luck!


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Most Recent Answer

By Mandy Leigh 1 1 Flag

July 20, 2010

Well, I read all of these and made my own, which, I will now use for life. I took just rosemary, not even fresh, just dry rosemary from your cabinet, I ground it up, then, I took equal amounts of mouth wash & water, then, I added 2 cap fulls of baby oil, put all into ingredients a spray bottle, shake it up and the more it sits, the more the aroma of the rosemary is stronger so it works better each time you use it.

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Question: Bug Repellent for Tomato Plants

Does anyone know the recipe for homemade bug repellant for tomatoes? I once saw a recipe with dish soap and water but i don't remember the amount to use.

Thanks in advance,

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Most Recent Answer

By guest (Guest Post) Flag

September 10, 2008

How does one apply this recipe? Spray it on? How often? Do you mix the epson salts in water before adding one cup of the mixture, or just put a cup of epson salts in with the other liquids?

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Tip: Homemade Aphid Repellant

I am looking for a homemade aphid repellant recipe. I know I have used one before but the recipe has escaped me.


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Tip: Make Tobacco Spray for Insect Pests

By julie 1

We all know the risks of nicotine by smoking, but the same is true for bugs by eating. Rid your garden of pests by way of nicotine.

Get a can of chewing tobacco, flavored or not color. Strain through a coffee filter. Pour into spray bottle 50/50 with water. Spray on leaves. Reapply after rain or watering, that washes the spray off the leaves.

By Julesthered from Yakima, WA


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Article: Aphid Control on Roses

Here is what we use for aphid control on roses.


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Tip: Citric Acid Solution for Aphids

By Araz 1

I spray infected plants with citric acid solution (1 teaspoon of citric acid dissolved in 0.5 L of water). I sometimes spray this solution on all plants as a protective method even if they're not affected, and repeat as needed, it works.


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Tip: Homemade Spray for Rose Bushes


  • 1 gallon of water
  • 2 Tbsp. of bleach
  • 2 drops of antibacterial dishwashing liquid such as Ajax
  • (optional)pinch of cinnamon


Shake well. Spray every 8 to ten days. Water well before and after spraying. Don't spray blooms and don't wash spray off. Make new spray each time you spray as the chlorine content will weaken

By Bill from Florida


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Tip: Insect Repellant for Plants

To keep those pesky insects away from your plants, combine one bulb of garlic, 1 small onion, and 1 Tbsp. cayenne pepper in the blender. Mix with 1 quart water and let stand for one hour. Then add 1 Tbsp. Ivory liquid and mist your plants!

By Rachel's mom


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Question: Recipe for Homemade Insecticide

By don 2 2

How do you make homemade insecticide? My grandson is trying to earn a gardening badge for Boy Scouts and is having a problem with roly poly bugs eating the tomatoes. He does not want to use a commercial product, but prefers to use something less harmful to the environment. Your help would be greatly appreciated!

By Shari

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Most Recent Answer

By hopefulau 1 17 Flag

July 15, 2013

From: SGGuides

To manage problems with aphids and mites, try a pesticide made with rhubarb leaves. Simply boil rhubarb leaves in water for 20 minutes, and when cool strain into a spray bottle. A mild dishwashing soap can be added as well. (take care with the leaves as they are poisonous when eaten)

For managing leaf-chewing pests, mix up mashed chili peppers, chopped onion and a head of minced garlic. Allow to steep in water for 24 hours before straining and spraying tomato plants.

To curb attacks from tomato hornworms and other leaf cutters, make a mash of marigold leaves and flowers, and soak in water for 24 hours. Strain the solids, and add another 1.5 quarts of water plus a pinch of liquid castille soap before spraying.

For problems with beetles, caterpillars, whitefly and any soft-bodied insect pest, use a mix of water, cayenne peppers and chopped horseradish root.

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Question: Homemade Aphid Spray with Vinegar

I have seen posts that suggest using vinegar to get rid of aphids. Isn't vinegar harmful to growing things?

By Joan

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Most Recent Answer

By Eileen M. 56 240 Flag

July 8, 2013

Vinegar is a great HERBICIDE (weed killer). For aphids, I suggest a squirt of liquid dish soap in a pint or so of water, spray the leaves, contacting as many aphids as possible. After 20 minutes or so, you may want to rinse off the soapy water so you don't burn the leaves.

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Question: Borax and Water Insecticide

By Kelly 1

How much borax do you add to a quart squirt bottle of water to use for insecticide? Anybody know? Thanks!

By Kelly from NM

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Most Recent Answer


December 1, 2012

First question would be why use borax to begin with, though considered low toxic it is still a number of times more toxic than anything else you or an exterminator would use for insect control. It is a slow acting stomach poison, so it would take time to get the job done if you are fighting a current insect infestation. The borates can be effective by lightly dusting out of the way places of the home, but mainly as a preventative.

25th year as exterminator

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Tip: Keeping Bugs off Plants

To help keep the worms and leaf eating bugs off your garden plants use jalapeno peppers, boil and strain, put the pepper "broth" in about a gallon of warm water and spray plants, this is a very safe bug repellant. Use about 6-8 peppers to a quart of water.

By ZIPP2101

If you have any more tips for keeping bugs off plants, feel free to post them.


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Question: Homemade Garden Insecticide

By Derwin D. Webb 1 2

I am looking for insecticide recipes.

Hardiness Zone: 5b

By doc8888webb from Independence, MO

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Homemade Insecticide
Home and Garden Pest Control InsectsJuly 13, 2013
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