Get Rid of Pests Naturally With Diatomaceous Earth
Every garden attracts both beneficial insects and those insects that we would rather never see again. If you have hard-shelled insects invading your space like beetles, squash bugs, ants, even fleas or scorpions, you should invest in food-grade Diatomaceous Earth (DE). DE as it is commonly called consists of diatoms which are fossilized water plants from algae-like plants. These hard-shelled algae grew 30 million years ago and built up into deep, chalky deposits of diatomite. Diatoms created a soft porous sedimentary rock that easily crumbled into a fine white powder. It is a mineral-based pesticide and is approximately 33% silicon, 19% calcium, 5% sodium, 3% magnesium, 2% iron and other trace minerals such as manganese, copper, titanium, boron, and zirconium.
Basically, DE has teeny tiny razor-like points on each particle from being fossilized for so many years. These sharp edges make tiny abrasions on the shell of an insect and since the insect can’t heal its exoskeleton, they die from dehydration or a loss of moisture. Remember that even though it is awesome at keeping away unwanted pests, it can also be harmful to beneficial insects like ladybugs or bees. If dealing with unwanted insects in the home, spread DE on the windowsills, the entire base of the house, and across all entryways. Reapply after a good rain as it will wash away and be absorbed into the soil.
Just a quick note – DE is MESSY, it is easy to clean up but some people don’t like having the white powder in the house just because it looks bad, but it is a non-toxic alternative to other pesticides, so you have to chose which is best for you. I personally use it outside, but not inside because of the mess.
Scorpions can be a huge problem in your home if you live in the Southwest. DE is an organic pesticide against scorpions. Not only spread DE around the base of the house and across all windowsills and entryways, but also on all of the outside walls and around any palm trees as that is where the Bark Scorpion lives. If you are dealing with an infestation of fleas, spread DE throughout your yard right on the grass. Make sure to always wear surgical mask when handling DE so you don’t breathe it in. Keep pets away from areas that have DE for at least 48 hours. If they breathe it in, you may notice them coughing a bit, but it should go away.
For it to be effective as an insecticide, diatomaceous earth must be uncalcinated which is only found in food grade DE. Don’t be confused with the DE that is also used in pool filtration and at first, will be where the home improvement guy sends you to buy it. Some big box stores have started to carry the food grade in the garden section, but make sure. Purchasing it online is a safe way to know you are buying the correct type of DE. This is the brand I usually buy.
Get rid of pests organically this year using DE. There are no harsh chemicals from synthetic insecticides being sent into our water system and into the environment. DE is one of the best ways to organically get rid of wanted pests in the garden.
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