Types of Insecticides

Types of Insecticides
Types of Insecticides


Insecticides are a powerful and easy way to insure your garden or flowers will be free from bothersome insect pests. But there are so many kinds of insecticides available that it can be confusing to choose the right type. Some sacrifice safety for power, while others sacrifice power for safety. Some are right in the middle. This guide will help you find the right insecticide.

Organic Insecticides

Organic insecticides are made from living material. Common materials for organic pesticides include plant oils and fatty acids. Organic insecticides are useful for growers who wish to minimize environmental damage, though they are often less effective than inorganic pesticides.

Inorganic Insecticides

Inorganic insecticides are made from chemicals and are generally more powerful than organic. The two main types are silica and boric acid. These will work faster and more efficiently, but they can be damaging to the environment and sometimes cause plant damage.

Homemade Organic Pesticides

Homemade pesticides are another alternative to dealing with pests. These pesticides are created using common household items including salt, alcohol, hot peppers, tobacco and soap. These are not as effective in killing pests but are very safe and cheap.

How Organic Insecticides Work

Organic insecticides often work to repel the pests as opposed to destroying them. By placing substances like tobacco and red pepper on plants, it creates an unappealing meal for the pest. These create a food that is safer to eat than plants treated by inorganic pesticides.

How Inorganic Insecticides Work

Inorganic insecticides usually work to kill the pests. Silica will strip the cuticle off the pests, suffocating them. While more effective and not dangerous, use of inorganic insecticides must be carefully monitored to create the safest possible food product.


  • Stuart M. Bennet. "Insecticides." Accessed June 11, 2009
  • Katherine West. "Homemade Organic Pesticide." Accessed June 11,2009
  • "What are the Different Types of Insecticide?" Accessed June 11, 2009

About this Author

Eric Benac began writing professionally in 2001. After working as an editor at Alpena Community College in Michigan and receiving his Associate of Journalism, he received a Bachelor of Science in English and a Master of Arts in writing from Northern Michigan University in Marquette.