Have you been searching for an organic way to minimize pests and grow healthy fruit and vegetables? In this post learn about the best essential oils for the garden.
Essential oils have long been touted for their beneficial uses, including aromatherapy, their use in natural cleaning products, natural beauty and personal care products and more. They can also be a great addition to your organic garden.
What are essential oils and how can they help in your garden
Essential oils are a natural oil typically obtained by distillation. They maintain the characteristic fragrance of the plant from which it was extracted. Essential oils tend to have a more potent nature than the original pant due to the distillation process.
You might be asking, how can a distilled plant oil help me out in the garden? Well, let me tell you essential oils can be extremely effective and economical as insecticides, and fungicides. They can even be used to attract pollinators. These oils can also help deter larger rodents from the garden. They really can pack a punch when it comes to helping your garden thrive, and they do it without synthetic ingredients!
What Essential Oils are good for the garden
Not all essential oils are created equal, and it's important that you research and find essential oils that do not have any additives and are processed in the safest way possible, especially if you are using essential oils in an edible garden. It's also important to note that different essential oils deter or attract different insects, so it's not always a one-and-done treatment. You may need to use several different oils if you have several different issues.
Essential oils that encourage pollinators
Lavender Essential Oil
Pollinators Love the scent of Lavender. Spray lavender or use a few drops of Lavender essential oils in and around your garden to attract pollinators if you need an extra boost from insects like bees and butterflies.
Orange Essential Oil
Orange essential oil has a sweet and clean aroma that also attract pollinators like bees and butterflies.
Essential oils For garden pest Control
Neem oil is kind of the king of holy grail of gardening essential oils. In other words it really packs a punch! It can repel over 200 species of garden-eating insects. Neem will help you deter (and kill) aphids, mites, snails, moths and gnats. It is also as an anti-fungal that supports soil while remaining friendly to birds, bees, ladybugs and other wildlife, as long as they are not sprayed directly (source).
Monthly application of Neem can keep pesky insects away from your garden veggies and it can be a great way to give plant seedlings a healthy start.
Although there are some great recipes to make your own DIY Neem Oil Insecticide, I recommend purchasing a pre-made garden Neem oil spray. Purchasing a Neem spray can come in handy when you have a real infestation and need to take quick action
Tea Tree Oil (melaleuca)
Tea Tree oil also know as melaleuca is a natural insecticide. When diluted with a bit of water and Castile soap this essential oil can kill aphids and other pesky insects eating your garden veggies.
Peppermint oil, when used in the garden is an excellent pest deterrent. It can also be used to get rid of unwanted garden fungus and works wonders at deterring squirrels and other rodents like rats and other rodents.
Lemongrass oil contains a high concentration of a chemical component called citral, which works as a an effective natural pesticide. It also deters pests as they do not care for the scent.
Cedar wood oil
Cedar wood oil will deter insects that don't typically enjoy the aroma. It does not typically kill the pests. It's know for its pungent odor and many find success using it to keep moths at bay, both indoors and out.
Essential oils for weed management
Clove oil, when sprayed directly on noxious weeds mixed with a bit of Castile soap will kill the leaves of most broadleaf weeds. Clove oil also repels most insects and mites.
Cinnamon Essential Oil
Cinnamon oil is one of the best essential oils for getting rid of weeds or unwanted grasses. Use it similarly to clove oil.
- 1 16oz glass spray bottle
- 15 drops Peppermint Oil
- 15 drops Tea tree oil
- 10 drops Clove oil
- Castile soap
- Water to fill
- a small funnel helps!
- Fill your 16 oz spray bottle about ¼ of the way with castile soap, if you can find peppermint castile soap it givees this spray an extra boost. .
- add all of your essentail oils to the bottle.
- Fill the bottle until it is a little over ¾ full.
- tighten the spray lid and shake well.