This DIY organic Neem oil garden Spray offers a powerful natural solution to many common garden pest and fungal problems.
It’s always best to try to take the organic route when dealing with infestations in the garden. Most of the time there’s an effective and natural remedy right under your nose in your own kitchen, or medicine cabinet.
For some really quick and easy solutions, check out these posts – Milk Anti-Mildew Spray, the Simple 3 Ingredient Anti Aphid Spray or the DIY Vinegar weedkiller All of these remedies use everyday ingredients and it’s amazing how effective they can be.
But when you you have a particularly stubborn attack, sometimes you need to bring out the big guns and reach for something a little stronger – Neem oil.
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Neem Oil is well known for it’s fantastic healing properties for the skin, hair and nails in Ayurvedic medicine, but it’s also a natural pest deterrent and a fantastic weapon against fungal problems in the garden. It comes from the evergreen Neem tree and the leaves produce a compound called azadirachtin which protects it from damaging leaf eating insects.
And as it is a pure essential oil, you can use it in your organic garden with complete confidence.
It’s so effective that even Bayer make their own neem oil organic fungicide and pesticide spray which does have some great reviews. However as with most organic alternatives, you do need to reapply it frequently to keep on top of the problem and that could end up a rather expensive option.
Happily, it’s very easy to make your own organic fungicide and pesticide spray with neem oil and then you can feel completely happy that your garden crops won’t be contaminated by anything nasty. Conveniently, as with most organic treatments, it can be applied to your plants and crops right up until the day of harvest without causing any harm.
When you’re in the garden centre it’s sometimes tempting to cave in and reach for the chemical fungicides and pesticides, the conventional products might seem to be more effective than the organic variations and an easier option, but if you do go organic, you can save yourself time and money, and enjoy having the peace of mind a natural garden brings.
You will need to reapply this solution every week during the summer months, and especially after it rains. If you have a very aggressive fungus problem like blight, it’s best to spray it daily until you’ve got it under control. But as it’s so cheap and easy to make it’s not a problem, you just apply it where necessary when you’re doing your watering.
Try to spray plants in the early morning before the sun heats up to prevent leaf burn, and also take special care to avoid beneficial bugs like lady-birds and bees. Although essential oils are much more gentle than chemicals, the lady birds don’t want a drenching, and equally you want to encourage them to stay, not send them packing!
It’s always best to spray in the morning before the sun gets too hot, so you don’t scorch your plants and any that are prone to develop mildew will have plenty of time to dry off before night fall.
This homemade organic fungicide is effective against powdery mildew, early tomato blight, leaf blight and black spots and it’s a natural deterrent against aphids.
After a few days of damp, cool weather my courgettes quite suddenly developed powdery mildew – so I needed to act fast. I removed the worst affected leaves and sprayed the courgettes thoroughly with this neem oil fungicide spray. Taking care to avoid any precious bees or their helpful friends.
I also gave the courgette plants a feed with some liquid seaweed and mulched the base of each plant with a top up of compost. this is important, because if a plant is struggling it’s always best to make sure it’s well nourished.
The next day the courgette plants looked so much happier! So I gave them a second treatment to make sure. I’ll need to keep a close eye on these plants for any signs of recurrence and give them a cautionary spray once a week.
To make your DIY Organic Neem Oil Pesticide & Fungicide Spray
- 2 tablespoons neem oil (if it’s a bit thick, mix it with 2 tbsp of almond or olive oil, to loosen it)
- 1 tsp peppermint oil
- 1 tsp rosemary oil
- 1 gallon water
- Pour ingredients into a large sprayer and shake well. Spray on affected plants (top and bottom of leaves). Alway give it a good shake before applying to make sure the oils are well blended.