These Neem Oil Uses for Garden are perfect if you’re an organic gardener. It’s the safest, easiest, and effective way to replace harmful pesticides!
Unlike commercial pesticides, neem oil is completely safe and natural, absolutely free from harmful chemicals. Also, it’s more effective than any other organic pest repellent available.
1. YOU CAN USE IT TO CONTROL INSECTS AT ALL STAGES OF DEVELOPMENT.
Neem oil kills insects at all stages of development — adult, larvae and egg. The active chemical in neem oil, azadirachtin, gets rid of insects in a few different ways:
- As an antifeedant
- As a hormone disruptor
- By smothering
Azadirachtin will force the insect or pest to stop eating the leaves.
When insects come into contact with neem oil, it also prevents the bug from transforming into its next stage of development by disrupting regulatory hormones.
2. IT EFFECTIVELY CONTROLS HUNDREDS OF INSECTS.
Neem oil is an effective pesticide that gets rid of over 200 species of insects, not just a few. Some of the most common include:
- Leaf hoppers
- White flies
3. BENEFICIAL EARTHWORMS WON’T BE HARMED.
While traditional chemical pesticides can harm earthworms, neem oil has the opposite effect by encouraging earthworm activity.
Why is this important? Earthworms are beneficial to garden soil. As they tunnel though the dirt, they create pathways that allow air and rain water to reach plant roots. These little guys also leave behind excrement, known as casts, that contain nutrients for the soil, including potassium, nitrogen and phosphorous. When earthworms die, their decaying bodies also help fertilize the soil
4. IT CAN BE USED AS A DORMANT-SEASON APPLICATION OR A FOLIAR SPRAY.
Since neem oil can kill insects at varying stages, you can use it as a dormant-season application to kill overwinter pests and eggs or as a foliar spray to repel and kill insects.
Use neem oil as a dormant oil spray to control a number of insects, including:
- Tent caterpillars, leaf rollers and other caterpillar eggs that remain on plant leaves during winter
- Aphids that cause leaf curling the following spring
- Mites that overwinter on plant leaves
- Scale insects
You can also use neem oil as foliar spray during the growing season to control common pests, such as:
- Spider mites
5. YOU CAN CONTROL LAWN GRUBS WITH NEEM OIL.
Lawn grubs are the larval stage of Japanese beetles, and they can be very destructive to your lawn. They tunnel under turf and nibble on grass roots. You’ll notice large brown or bare spots in areas of high grub activity.
Neem oil also works to control Japanese beetles by preventing them from laying eggs that become destructive larvae. It also inhibits grub growth and repels them from the grass roots. For best results, spray the lawn with neem oil at night and reapply after rainfall.
6. NEEM CAKES DOUBLE AS A GOOD FERTILIZER AND AN EFFECTIVE PESTICIDE.
A neem cake is made from organic manure, a byproduct of cold-pressed neem fruit and kernels. Neem cakes are extra special because they act as both a pesticide and a fertilizer.
They fertilize the soil by extending the availability of nitrogen and help control nematodes, white ants, and grubs.
7. YOU CAN SAFELY USE IT ON YOUR INDOOR PLANTS.
One of the worst feelings is seeing your indoor plants overrun with aphids.
Neem oil is safe to use indoors to prevent pests and disease. Just spray the leaves to kill pests without having the worry of harming your kids or household pets.
8. NEEM OIL IS A GREAT FUNGICIDE.
You can use neem oil to prevent or even kill fungus on your plants. Use neem oil for powdery mildew and other common fungal diseases, including:
- Black spot
- Leaf spot
- Tip blight
To prevent fungi, spray susceptible plants every seven to 14 days until the fungus is no longer a threat. To kill fungi, spray plants once a week until the fungi clears up, and then spray every two weeks to keep it from coming back.
9. NEEM OIL CAN PROTECT YOUR FRUIT TREES AND BERRY BUSHES.
Whether you have an orchard or just a few fruit trees in your backyard, you can control the pests that ruin your crop with neem oil. Apple trees are often plagued with worms, the two most common being the coddling moth and the meal worm. These pests enter the apples and make them unfit to eat.
To keep your fruit trees and berry bushes insect free, spray your plants and trees early — before blossoming, then again when the petals drop, and every two weeks after to control these pests.
Common fruit-tree insect that neem oil will protect against include:
- Wooly apply aphids
- Rose leafhoppers
- Tarnished plant bug
Berries are often plagued by powdery mildew and other fungal diseases that can be treated with neem oil, including:
- Fire blight
- Verticillium wilt
- Orange rust
10. PROTECT YOUR VEGGIES FROM PESTS AND FUNGUS.
Neem oil has a dual purpose in the vegetable garden as both a pesticide and a fungicide. It works on arthropod pests that often eat your vegetables, including tomato hornworms, corn earworm, aphids and whiteflies.
In addition, neem oil also controls common fungi that grow on vegetable plants, including:
- Leaf spots
- Stem rots
If you want to use neem oil on vegetable plants, spray them in the evening and again in the morning. Spraying at these times helps ensure you are not causing any harm to beneficial insects, such as bees, that help pollinate vegetable plants.
11. NEEM OIL KEEPS THE MOSQUITOS AWAY.
It’s nice to know that what you’re spraying on your plants to protect them from pests, viruses and fungus can also keep your gardening time mosquito free. While neem oil insecticides shouldn’t be applied to your skin because of inert ingredients, you can apply straight neem oil if you wanted to.
12. IT CAN PROTECT YOUR HERBS.
The same pests and fungi that plague your vegetable garden can also attack your herbs. These pests include:
- Leaf miners
- Spider mites
- Gray mold
You can spray neem oil on herbs, just as you do other plants. Some herbs may be tenderer than others, especially those with fuzzy or hairy leaves, so spray a small area first to make sure they can tolerate the neem oil.
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