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Homemade Garlic Spray for Aphid Control

bouton de rose image by asb from Fotolia.com

Aphids are tiny pear-shaped insects that cling to plants and suck the juices out of them. The most common ones are green or brown and they have a soft body. Some have wings and some do not. They reproduce through the warm months of the year and can devastate a rose garden. Aphids are often seen in clumps on stems and buds of roses and on other plants. They can even affect a lawn. Aphids do not like garlic, and a homemade spray will chase most of them away.

garlic image by Bartlomiej Nowak from Fotolia.com

Pull apart the bulb of garlic. A bulb is comprised of many cloves. Do not worry about pulling off all the papery skins from the cloves. Either chop all the cloves with a sharp knife or put them in a blender and chop coarsely.

Put chopped garlic and all juice that might be on the chopping board or in the blender into a wide-mouth jar. Add 1 cup vegetable oil and shake the jar. Place it in the refrigerator and let it steep for about two or three days, shaking every day or so.

Strain the oil using a coffee filter attached with a rubber band over the top of another wide-mouth jar. Discard the solids and use the oil to make the garlic spray. Keep excess oil in the refrigerator for future use. It will last about two or three months.

Combine 1 tsp. of the garlic oil, 3 to 4 drops of dish washing liquid, and 1 quart water in a blender. Blend well and pour into a spray bottle.

Spray on plants in the morning or after each rain to get rid of aphids. Always lightly shake the spray bottle before starting to spray to ensure the ingredients are mixed.

Tip

Spray in the morning when temperatures are cool and the dew has evaporated. This will prevent burning of plants and washing off due to evaporation of the dew. The oil and dish soap help the spray stick to the plants and smothers aphids. Spray every morning until a decrease of insects is seen, then every other day.

Warning

Garlic spray will keep beneficial insects like ladybugs and bees away so use only when necessary. Stop spraying two weeks before harvesting vegetables and other edible plants or they will taste like garlic no matter how many times they are washed.

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