Organic gardening has so many virtues, but there is always one thing that people get worried about when they consider giving up chemical fertilizers and pesticides, that their precious crops will be infested or devoured by pesky insects, rodents or other creatures of nature. There are many different methods for keeping these sometimes cute, often times destructive creatures out of your garden; you can create fencing, net your fruits and vegetables, plant appropriate companion plants with your vegetables, etc. However, that doesn’t always keep the plants safe…so I have created a recipe for insect and small pest repellent that uses natural and wholesome ingredients!
Ken’s Potager Rescue Spray!
I use a 48 ounce continuous garden sprayer for this so the recipe works for that…adjust your quantities for the spray container that you have.
22 ounces cool tap water
14 ounces organic Castile Soap (Dr. Bronners is an excellent choice and you can get it with organic peppermint oil included which will allow you to reduce the amount of peppermint extract you add)
6-8 ounces of garlic infused oil (you can make this yourself if you grow garlic, or purchase it from the store….it is much less expensive to make it yourself)
1/2 ounce peppermint extract
Combine these ingredients in your sprayer and allow to sit for a day or so. Shake the container gently before using, pump with air and spray your vegetables and near the perimeter of your garden for extra protection.
Most harmful insects are repelled by the peppermint extract and or oil and small animals such as rabbits and squirrels are turned off by the volatile garlic oil.
The best time to spray is in the morning or evening right after you water or directly after a rain. The oil and soap will cling to the plants better as the water evaporates! The spray should be reapplied periodically after each topside watering or every rainstorm.