How To, My Garden

Homemade Organic Insecticides

I had so much problem with the little black bug last year that it really bugs me. I didn’t want to use a chemical insecticide since I have other herbs and vegetables nearby and I’m trying to grow organic garden.

My Thai eggplant in June 2010

When I was little living in Thailand, I read that Thai farmers have had much success using Sadao vegetable (Margosa or Neem) as organic insecticide.  I stopped by an Asian Market to buy a frozen Sadao after work.

Canon T2i, EF 24-105mm f/4L IS USM lens, Manual, f/6.3, 1sec, ISO 200, focal length 105mm, evaluative metering, tripod mounted

I’m not sure if it’s the bitter flavor that keeps the bug away and this year I’m experimenting with a few ingredients. I was talking to my co-workers and they’ve heard that vinegar works.I’m also thinking about olive oil since oil will smother insects, but using too much can kill plants as well. I decided to use Sadao vegetable, vinegar, olive oil and water.

Canon T2i, EF 24-105mm f/4L IS USM lens, Manual, f/8, 3.2sec, ISO 400, focal length 60mm, evaluative metering, tripod mounted

All the ingredients go in the blender.

Canon T2i, EF 24-105mm f/4L IS USM lens, Manual, f/5.6, 2.5sec, ISO 200, focal length 75mm, evaluative metering, tripod mounted

Blend for several minutes.

Canon T2i, EF 24-105mm f/4L IS USM lens, Manual, f/5.6, 2sec, ISO 200, focal length 80mm, evaluative metering, tripod mounted

I strain out the water since I’ll be pouring this into a spray bottle.

Canon T2i, EF 24-105mm f/4L IS USM lens, Manual, f/5.6, 4sec, ISO 200, focal length 93mm, evaluative metering, tripod mounted

I hope this will work, if not I might have to tweak it a little.

Canon T2i, EF 24-105mm f/4L IS USM lens, Manual, f/5.6, 1/60sec, ISO 200, focal length 40mm, evaluative metering

I planted the chili peppers several days back, and decided to spray my homemade Sadao insecticide just in case.

Canon T2i, EF 24-105mm f/4L IS USM lens, Manual, f/5.6, 1/50sec, ISO 200, focal length 92mm, evaluative metering

And the young Thai eggplants that my dad gave me, I sure hope that this will work.

Canon T2i, EF 24-105mm f/4L IS USM lens, Manual, f/5.6, 1/60sec, ISO 200, focal length 58mm, evaluative metering

I also bought the lemongrass from the Asian market.  I’m soaking these in water for a few days before planting, it should take roots by then.

Canon T2i, EF 24-105mm f/4L IS USM lens, Manual, f/4, 1/500sec, ISO 200, focal length 55mm, evaluative metering

Lee helped plant the string beans today. My neighbor kept telling me to be careful and not to lift anything heavy.

Canon T2i, EF 24-105mm f/4L IS USM lens, Manual, f/4, 1/320sec, ISO 200, focal length 40mm, evaluative metering

I soaked the beans in warm water overnight, then took it out and left them in a moist towel for several days. This will grow a lot faster than just dropping them in the hole.

Canon T2i, EF 24-105mm f/4L IS USM lens, Manual, f/4, 1/1000sec, ISO 200, focal length 98mm, evaluative metering

Lee planting the string beans.

Canon T2i, EF 24-105mm f/4L IS USM lens, Manual, f/4, 1/100sec, ISO 200, focal length 55mm, evaluative metering
Canon T2i, EF 24-105mm f/4L IS USM lens, Manual, f/4, 1/8sec, ISO 200, focal length 105mm, evaluative metering

I saw several green cabbage worms today and yesterday and had to handpick them out from my cabbage.  I read that cabbage worms dislike thyme and oregano, and I have plenty of thyme.  I’m going to mix thyme, mint, and water tomorrow, something that I have plenty of in my herb garden right behind Lee.

Canon T2i, EF 24-105mm f/4L IS USM lens, Aperture Priority, f/5.6, 1/50sec, ISO 200, focal length 24mm, Exposure Bias -0.7step, evaluative metering

The Honeysuckles have a nice aroma. I love this time of the year.

Canon T2i, EF 24-105mm f/4L IS USM lens, Aperture Priority, f/5.6, 1/50sec, ISO 200, focal length 58mm, Exposure Bias -0.7step, evaluative metering

Lee’s flower that she planted from seed 2 years ago.

Canon T2i, EF 24-105mm f/4L IS USM lens, Aperture Priority, f/5.6, 1/50sec, ISO 200, focal length 105mm, Exposure Bias -0.7step, evaluative metering

Bo’s Ginkgo tree and also known as the Maidenhair tree. The tree is widely cultivated and introduced since an early period in human history, and has various uses as a food and traditional medicine.

Canon T2i, EF 24-105mm f/4L IS USM lens, Manual, f/4, 1/50sec, ISO 200, focal length 105mm, evaluative metering,

The Paeonia ‘Scarlett O’Hara’ is in full bloom.

Canon T2i, EF 24-105mm f/4L IS USM lens, Manual, f/4, 1/160sec, ISO 200, focal length 92mm, cropped, evaluative metering
Canon T2i, EF 24-105mm f/4L IS USM lens, Manual, f/5.6, 1/100sec, ISO 400, focal length 105mm, evaluative metering

Lee rewarded herself with a flower, happy gardening.

Canon T2i, EF 24-105mm f/4L IS USM lens, Aperture Priority, f/5.6, 1/60sec, ISO 200, focal length 47mm, Exposure Bias -0.7step, evaluative metering

10 thoughts on “Homemade Organic Insecticides”

  1. I NEVER use Roundup or other chemicals in my garden too, I’m looking foreawrd to see how your Homemade Organic Insecticides works!
    I enjoyed your wonderful photos from your garden and work with Lee there, it looks like you have a large garden with many plants and flowers….

    1. Hi truels, so far it’s working out great but I have to keep an eye on it and might mix another batch in a couple of days. My garden is not very big, just shooting from different angles and it appears big. 🙂

  2. The organic insecticide looks promising. I was thinking of using neem oil too, but frozen sadao is much easier to find.

    The vinegar I haven’t used since it’s used to kill weeds. But other gardeners suggest a 50/50 mix of vinegar and water is good for acid loving plants such as gardenias, azaleas, rhododendrons, and hydrangeas.

    Btw, your garden has really come out in all colors. Especially the amazing color of the iris.

    1. Hi Cambree, I think it’s working pretty good and I’m blending just water and frozen sadao now. The frozen sadao is great since you could put the portion that you don’t use back in the freezer. The oil and vinegar mixture might be a bit harsh on the young plants, it should be okay for a more mature plant. The garden is coming along nicely and I have most of my vegetables planted. 🙂

    1. Peter, I’m checking on the young plants twice a day and so far they are doing real good with the homemade organic insecticides. I hope it will work out for you.

  3. I have problems with catapillars in my garden and I found that Carson soap and water really irritates them, some might say to the point of cruelty. If I can’t find sadao what is equivalent?

    1. Hi redwineinchina, I’ve used dawn dish detergent water for my roses and it seems to help. I’m not sure if they would have it in your area, I was able to find the concentrated Sadao extract in the hardware store in the organic garden section and have been using it since. I’m not sure what other plant is equivalent to sadao.

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