Natural Pesticides, their types, and their benefits to the plants will provide you the awareness about the harmful pests and insects and how you can prevent and control them using natural pesticides. Organic or natural pesticides are a better alternative to chemical products; however, they need to be used carefully. There are several types of natural pesticides that are not chemical products and come back with less effect and reduced risk to the planet. Organic garden pesticides must follow certain USDA requirements and bear a badge showing that they are approved. The benefits of using organic pesticides for plants are their specific target range slow mode of action, shorter duration, low residue levels, and safer use than traditional pesticides. These characteristics are very advantageous to people and the environment as well but as with any method, you must pay careful attention to time and means of application and implement any measures.
Are Natural Pesticides Safe?
Organic plant pesticides are known to be those which are derived from natural materials. That doesn’t mean that products are free from chemicals, only that the chemicals are generated from botanical and mineral sources. They do need to be used safely, but the chemicals split down pretty easily and are considered less harmful than industrial sources. Almost every hour of the day, chemicals attack the body.
They can be in the air. The food we eat, the products we apply to our bodies, and even our drinking water. It has been shown that the toxic buildup of these chemicals causes harm to health and body. Many of the present pesticides today have existed for years widely in the soil, worsening the storage of pollutants in our soil, air, and water.
Types of Natural Pesticides
The broad range of organic pesticides includes biochemical, microbial, botanical, or mineral-based pesticides. Many of these are from plants themselves, insects, or minerals from nature.
The versatility of biochemical pesticides is interesting. Pheromones are one type that is often naturally sourced or human-made. They can disturb the mating action and influence insect populations.
Microbial agents come from bacteria, fungi, algae, naturally occurring viruses, or protozoans. These bring disease to a certain population of insects, generate a chemical, or restrict growth. An example of this type of natural pesticide is the Milky Spore.
Botanical pesticides are found in plants. Tobacco, Neem, Rotenone, Sabadilla, and Pyrethrins are all made from the other plants. For example, pyrethrins come from the chrysanthemum plant and are helpful in destroying flying insects and emptying out larvae and grubs.
Sulfur and lime-sulfur have mineral based controls. As part of the control of various insect pests, both can be sprayed.
Homemade Natural Pesticides
- Before scientific technology and science took shape, ancient wisdom provided a solution for all. Pest control in the field was achieved u sing companion plants and herbs, good cultural practices such as crop rotation and field burning or the product of homemade sprays and dust.
- Garlic discourages beetles and some larvae. Pennyroyal, feverfew and tansy have exceptional repellent qualities and give the garden bright color, fragrance and form.
- Enabling beneficial insects, such as ladybugs and wasps, is a natural method of decreasing harmful pest populations.
- Vegetable oil combined with organic dish soap is a popular natural pesticide useful for little sucking insects.
- Glue traps are simple to install with flying paper and efficient in controlling flying insects on fruit trees.
- Internet provides more homemade organic pesticides and effective insect control techniques.
Besides, there are other types of pesticides and each one is effective against particular pests.
- Algaecides – kill or slow down
the growth of algae.
- Antimicrobials – Controls bacteria and viruses.
- Bio pesticides – Are natural and come from living things.
- Desiccants – Dries up the tissues of the living plants.
- Defoliants – makes the plants to fall their leaves.
- Disinfectants – Controls germs and microbes.
- Foggers – Kill insects.
- Fungicides – Controls molds, mildew and rust.
- Herbicides – Kills and reduces the growth of useless plants and weeds.
- Insecticides – Kills and controls insects.
- Mothballs – Kills fabric pests.
- Miticides – Controls mites that live on plants and animals.
- Ovicides – Controls the eggs of insects and mites.
- Repellents – Repels unnecessary pests.
- Rodenticides – Kills rats, mice and gophers.
Synthesized chemicals are the majority of backyard and garden pesticides available today. Since some of these pesticides have been related to health and environmental risks, so, there has been a growing interest in alternatives in recent years.
One natural source of pest control is microbes. Many bacteria, fungi, and other organisms cause diseases that kill insect pests or weaken them. These are called microbial pesticides.
Formulations of natural products have established as efficient pest controls. For example, the mixture of vegetable oils with an alkaline material such as potassium hydroxide creates soaps that could be used to control insects and mites.
Plants themselves have been shown to be sources of some of the most potent ingredients for pest control. Many plants generate a host of chemical defenses that they use to avoid the attack of different pests naturally. Some plants are particularly rich in chemicals that can be collected and used for the control of insects. These products are referred to as botanical or, basically, botanical insecticides.
Pesticides obtained from natural sources such as those made from petrochemicals have a broad series of effects. For example, most botanical pesticides do less harm to the environment than synthetics, because when exposed to heat, light, and water, they break down easily.
Others are as highly harmful as popular chemical garden pesticides. Toxic effects are an indicator of the damage they can do to you if they are eaten, inhaled or absorbed through the skin.
Both pesticides, including synthetic and natural pesticides, are controlled by the Environmental Protection Agency and the states and must be used directly in connection with all manufacturer guidelines on the labels.
The bacterium Bacillus thuringiensis, better known as BT, is the microbe most widely used for garden pest control. Various strains of BT, which exist naturally in soils across the globe, generate chemicals that damage various insects. To be successful, the pest must eat BT. Soon after eating BT; weak insects avoid feeding, as it kills the lining of their intestine. Within a few days, death occurs.
The key objective of BT is its pretty selective action. Most BT items kill the only caterpillar. This suggests that the negative impacts are avoided by most beneficial insects. BT is considered very safe to humans, and it is possible to use most items during the harvest.
However, BT does have some drawbacks. Extensive protection of the infected plant is important since it must be eaten. Upon exposure to sunlight and water, BT often breaks down easily, rarely lasts much longer than a few days. BT removes not only pest larvae, but also butterfly larvae. Know the insect you are spraying for and spare the plants where butterfly larvae live on.
For indirect control of plant pests, microbes can sometimes be used. Indeed the best example is the Clandosan , which controls nematodes. The substance mainly consists of crab shells and similar kinds of stuff that are blended with the soil.
It promotes the growth of microbes that depend on chitin, the primary component of crustacean shells. Chitin also covers nematodes and is thus therefore exposed to microbes. Microbial pesticides, much like natural pesticides, are available in sprays, dust, or granules.
Horticultural Natural Oils
For insects and mites, cultured petroleum oils have long been used for management. Oils irritate insects by pulling the orifices called spiracles from which they breathe. For certain insects and mites, they can even be poisonous. Horticultural oils or dormant oils refer to the improved oil products for pest management.
The major issue with these oils is that they might harm the plants if you use them improperly. So, you need to use the oils safely on plants in an inactive state.
The understanding of what makes oils useful as pesticides, however, and what causes phytotoxicity for plant injury has grown, and oil products are now available that can be used safely on several plants. Even with the most processed horticultural oils, some plants, such as walnuts, some maples, and cedar, remain oil sensitive.
Read the label for information on sensitive plants and when not to spray, as spraying can cause damage under certain environmental conditions. Oils have become a common alternative for pest control because they are very powerful for many difficult issues. They act as dormant sprays and monitor insects and mites that stay on trees and shrubs during winter.
However, the refined oils available in the market are also very helpful in controlling whiteflies, young scales, mites, and many other plant pests that exist during their growing season. In the control of certain plant diseases, oils have also proved useful.
Horticultural oils are very healthy for humans and other animals. There are also limited negative effects on beneficial organisms, particularly those of dormant seasonal sprays sprayed when most beneficial insects are still not active in the garden. Horticultural oils, like soaps, work purely by contact action and have no side effects, so extensive coverage is important.
For over 200 years, people have been using soaps as insecticides, but their use has greatly increased recently. This is mainly because there is now a greater awareness of what kinds of soaps make the most powerful insecticides but do not affect plants. As dilute sprays, insecticidal soaps work mainly by destroying insects and mites’ cell membranes. A diverse range of insects is sensitive to soaps, such as aphids, leafhoppers, and spider mites, mostly small, soft-bodied animals.
But certain larger insects are also sensitive, such as Japanese beetles. The results are severe, typically causing sensitive insects to die within minutes of exposure. In order to improve their efficiency, soaps are often blended with other insecticides, such as pyrethrins.
Their key benefits are the specific action of soaps and their high level of protection for humans. They have, in general, a limited effect on beneficial organisms. The insecticidal soaps are very effective on a huge range of vegetable and ornamental plants.
Soaps are more resistant than other insecticides to such environmental factors. The minerals in hard water, for example, work with soaps to decrease their activity. And soaps will become less efficient when they dry quickly.
Works effectively on several types of insects by making them dry out and die. Though there are no saleable alcohol insecticides, it is an element in some insecticidal soaps and readymade insecticides. It controls mealybugs on houseplants. You can use it directly on the insects with a cotton ball in order to avoid the plant from injuries. Plants, however, bear alcohol well so you can mix alcohol and water and then spray on the plants.
Broadly used botanical insecticides come from the flowers of the pyrethrum daisy. Pyrethrum flowers are rarely available in powdered form, but there are various products consisting of the elements, pyrethrins.
Pyrethrins are often mixed with other ingredients such as soap, diatomaceous earth, or rotenone, another botanical insecticide, and available for garden use. They have strange insecticidal properties. The remarkable feature of this natural insecticide is it kills flying insects instantly upon exposure. Insects get irritated and therefore pyrethrins can wash out pests. The insecticides will not be present for a longer duration in the environment.
Most insects are particularly sensitive to pyrethrins, so you can add very low concentrations. At the same time, Pyrethrins are very nontoxic to most species, making them one of the safest natural insecticides in use. People use it on a huge range of plants because of their low toxicity and less persistence of pyrethrum insecticides
Synthetic pyrethrins, or pyrethroids, have been established in the past few decades. The pyrethroids have the basic chemistry of pyrethrins, but to increase durability, insecticidal activity, and other characteristics, they are chemically changed. Few pyrethroids are available for lawn and garden use while commonly used in commercial agriculture.
Rotenone is one of the ancient botanical insecticides. Rotenone is most widely used as dust prepared by crushing the plant roots or removing the active ingredients and covering dust particles. Several mixtures of rotenone/pyrethrins are available in the market.
Environmental Protection Agency has approved the use of rotenone in a broad variety of vegetables and fruits. Rotenone is mainly used to monitor various caterpillars and beetles that feed on the leaves, such as cabbage worms and potato beetles.
Rotenone is also harmful to certain insects with sucking mouthparts, such as aphids and thrips. It is a pretty slow-acting insecticide, frequently taking many days to kill sensitive insects.
Gardeners should be mindful of the fact that rotenone is the most highly toxic of the commonly available botanicals and more harmful than most of the traditional chemical pesticides. For humans, it is reasonably poisonous and extremely deadly to fish and sea organisms.
The pesticide is a solid powdered extract from the shrub Ryania speciosa. It is also available with the combination of both pyrethrin and rotenone and has shown convincing results against many insects and pests and very effective in controlling the codling moths. Different types of caterpillars, leaf beetles, and thrips are also targeted.
However, it has limited effects on many beneficial insects, so it can be used for these and other biological controls. After usage, Ryania breaks down more slowly than other botanical insecticides and it is non-toxic for mammals.
An insecticide made by refining the seeds of the sabadilla plant. These products were unavailable for years; however, they are made available now and have displayed proven results against the bugs, pests, squash bug, chinch bug, harlequin bug, stink bugs, leaf-feeding caterpillars, Mexican bean beetles, and thrips.
The EPA is allowed to use sabadilla on some vegetables such as squash, cucumbers, melons, beans, turnips, mustard, collards, cabbage, peanuts, and potatoes. The ground seeds of sabadilla sold for garden use are listed among the least harmful of the varied botanicals. Sabadilla dust, however, can be extremely irritating to the respiratory tract, frequently causing a severe sneezing reaction if breathed.
Make sure that you wear a dust mask while applying it and follow the instructions specified on the product labels, as with all pesticides. In particular, some of the sabadilla alkaloids may cause sudden depression of blood pressure in humans.
Those obtained from the seeds of the neem tree are the latest botanical insecticides. Especially in India, for pharmaceutical purposes, products from neem seeds and other parts of the tree have long been used, such as in toothpaste. Neem has recently gained a lot of attention because it is so healthy for humans and has unique insect-resistant properties. When you add neem sprays to leaves, then it prevents the insects from feeding on the leaves.
Feeding is also stopped by sprays of neem added to leaves. Neem also tends to affect the hormones that many insects need to create, killing them as they try to develop from eggs. Neem insecticides can be used to control many leaves-chewing beetles and caterpillars. Usually, aphids and most other sucking insects are less sensitive. Due to its proven protection, neem has recently been excluded from food-crop restrictions by the EPA, allowing farmers to market it for use on any food or ornamental plant.
Natural Pesticides for Your Garden
Neem Leaf – For its medicinal and food properties, neem has long been used. There are a bitter taste and strong smell in this medicinal herb that can keep bugs away from your plants, but it is not poisonous to animals, birds, plants, and humans. It is excellent to spray neem oil once twenty-two days on young plants to have good results. Add liquid soap, warm water, and some neem oil then mix slowly. Place it in a spray bottle and use it directly on the plants.
Salt Spray – Salt spray is one of the easiest and most natural methods of making pesticides at home. In fact, it not only helps to avoid pests, but it also helps to improve the intake of nutrition such as magnesium and helps plants take essential nutrients such as phosphorus and sulfur. You should add some salt to the water and blend the solution well. Transfer it to a bottle and spray it on the plants. You may also spread salt; reapply it each week, around your plants.
Onion and Garlic Spray – Take a clove of garlic and onion, add water to them. Wait for a while then add a teaspoon of cayenne pepper also add liquid soap to it. Spray it on your plants, this will keep all the bugs away.
Eucalyptus Oil – The strong scent of the oil will prevent insects, bugs, and pests as well. Spray the oil regularly on your plants.
Chrysanthemum Flower Tea – The flowers have a great chemical compound named pyrethrum. The chemical will harm the nervous system of the insects and the pests as well. Boil a few dried flowers, strain, and cool it then pour it into the spray bottle. You can also add neem oil for more effectiveness.
1. What are natural pesticides?
Other species normally create natural pesticides for their own protection, or they are generated from a natural source, such as a mineral or plant. Plants contain many natural pesticides they use against insects and disease species for their own safety.
2. What are the main types of pesticides?
Pesticides can be grouped according to the types of pests which they kill:
Rodenticides – rodents (rats and mice)
Bactericides – bacteria.
Fungicides – fungi.
Larvicides – larvae.
Insecticides – insects.
Herbicides – plants.
3. How do you make a natural pesticide?
Mix one cup of vegetable oil with one tablespoon of soap then cover and shake thoroughly to make a simple oil spray insecticide, and then, when ready to apply, add two teaspoons of oil spray mix with one quart of water, shake completely and spray directly on the surfaces of the plants affected by the insects.
4. How many kinds of pesticides are there?
There are three major types of biopesticides: microbial pesticides, Plant-Incorporated-Protectants (PIPs), and biochemical pesticides.
5. Are natural pesticides safe?
Currently, the chemicals that are most harmful to humans are absolutely normal! Not only that, but there is a lot of evidence that natural pesticides are just as harmful as chemical pesticides that are used in organic farming. But synthetic copies of natural chemicals it is not good for human beings.