Aphids,Insect Control,Insects,Pest Control,Plants and Trees
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Dawn dish soap is a well-known brand thats probably sitting in your kitchen, but have you ever wondered if Dawn is helpful in cleaning up pests in your garden? Well, it turns out that
Many common garden pests die when they come into direct contact with Original Scent Dawn dish soap diluted in water. The soapy water is thought to wash away a bugs protective coating, so the pest dries out and dies. Once the soapy water has dried, it no longer has any effect on garden pests and should be rinsed off the plant.
Many gardeners praise the benefits of using Dawn dish soap for getting rid of pesky insects in their garden. Lets take a look at what bugs you can kill with Dawn dish soap, how to kill these garden pests, and how to protect your plants in the process.
** If you live in the UK, Europe, Australia, or New Zealand,try this dish soapinstead of Dawn dish soap. Its made by the same company (Procter & Gamble) but is sold under another brand name
What bugs does Dawn dish soap kill?Photo of an earwig on a dead plant. Earwigs become garden pests when their population gets out of control.
Dawn dish soap can kill many garden pests, such as:AntsAphidsBoxelder bugsCarpenter antsCrawlers (immature scales)EarwigsGrasshoppersGrubsHarlequin bugsJapanese beetlesLeaf hoppersMealybugsPlanthoppersPsyllidsRose slugsScale insectsSpider mitesSpittlebugsThripsWhiteflies
Bugs dont have bones to support their body, like humans. A bugs supportive structure is on the outside of its body and is called anexoskeleton. This exoskeleton protects the bugs insides and gives it enough support to keep its shape and move around.
There is awaxy layeraround this exoskeleton that keeps the bug moist inside and stops water from getting into the bugs body. This waxy layer is very important in keeping the bug alive.
Researchersarent 100% certain why or how Dawn dish soap kills bugs, but they think that either:The soap washes off the bugs protective waxy layer. After a little time, the bug loses too much moisture and dries out and dies.The soap has a poisonous effect on a bugs nervous system and kills it, which is one of the mosteffectiveways to kill bugs and is how many chemical pesticides work.How to make Dawn dish soap spray to kill bugs
Dawn dish soap makes an easy and cost-effective alternative to the insecticidal soaps that you can buy from garden stores or Amazon, such as thisready-made concentrate.
Dawn dish soap must always be diluted in water before being sprayed onto plants. It will burn your plants if it isnt diluted well enough.
Heres the recipe to make Dawn dish soap insecticide:1 gallon of warm water2 tablespoonsOriginal Scent Dawn dish soapin the blue bottle (** If you live in the UK, Europe, Australia, or New Zealand,try this dish soapby the same company thats sold under another brand name)
Mix the water and dish soap well and pour it into a clean spray bottle or portablesprayer.Tips:
Never usedry soap, dishwasher soap, or laundry detergent instead of Dawn dish soap. These dont kill bugs and can really damage your plants.
Only use theOriginal scent Dawn dish soapin the blue bottle, not any other Dawn product.
You needsoft waterto make good insecticide. Youll know you have hard water if you see spots on the clean silverware washed in your dishwasher or stains on your newly washed clothes. If you have hard water in your home, use distilled or bottled water instead of tap water.How to spray Dawn dish soap to kill bugs
For the solution to work well, it must come intodirect contactwith the bugs youre trying to kill. Once your spray dries on the plant, it will no longer work.
Heres a step-by-step guide on how to use Dawn dish soap insecticide for the best results:Check the weather forecast for rain you want to apply the spray when you know there wont be rain that day. If it rains before then, the rain will wash away the spray.Wait for early morning or early evening, when its not too hot outside. If its a sunny day, the sun will dry your Dawn spray very quickly and burn the plant. If youre treating indoor plants, you can apply the spray at any time of the day or night.Start with any plant thats showing signs of bug damage. Spray the plant from top to bottom with the Dawn spray. Make sure you cover the tops and undersides of its leaves, around the stem, and all its buds and flowers.If you see bugs, spray them directly with the solution. The insecticide must touch the bugs to work properly. Once it dries, it stops working.To protect your plants, rinse them down with fresh water once the spray solution has dried.Repeat this treatment every week or two until you get the pest problem under control.
This spray will kill any bugs that you have crawling on your plants but itwont stop more bugs from coming in future. If new bugs arrive, use the Dawn spray to take care of them too.Is Dawn dish soap safe for plants?
The Dawn insecticide isunlikely to damageyour plants if you dont use it often, but there are some plants that are more likely to get hurt by the spray.
You should never spray Dawn dish soap on the following plants:SeedlingsNew transplantsPlants with hairy or waxy leavesPlants that are weak or drought-affected
Using the Dawn spray on any of these types of plants could break down the plants natural defenses and make them evenmore vulnerableto diseases and pests.
Plants and trees that dont handle Dawn spray well are:AzaleasBegoniasBleeding heartsCherry treesCrown of thornsEaster liliesFuchsiasGardeniasGeraniumsHawthornsHorse chestnutsImpatiensJapanese maplesLantanasMaidenhair fernsMountain ashNasturtiumsPlum treesSweet peas
If you have any doubts, spray the Dawn solution on a single leaf andwait 24 hoursto see if any damage occurs, like the leaf turning brown or wilting. If nothing happens, its probably safe to spray the entire plant without harming it.
Remember torinse the plant with fresh watera few hours after spraying it with the Dawn spray, once the spray dries. Dont spray and leave it on the plant indefinitely as the solution can remove the plants natural protective layers and make it more likely to be scorched by the sun.
If you need to treat plants that cannot handle Dawn dish soap or that have a bad reaction to your 24-hour test, theres a goodorganic alternativefor youOther soaps to use besides Dawn
If you have sensitive plants that you cant spray with Dawn dish soap or youre looking for an organic alternative, the best option is agood quality castile soap, such asthis popular organic option on Amazon. Choose castile soap that has no added fragrances, chemicals, or additives.
To make a bug soap spray with castile soap,mix 6 tablespoons of castile soap in 1 gallon of warm water. Mix well and youre ready to start spraying.
The good news is that this spray is gentle on your plants andlets the good bugs live like ladybugs.Final thoughts
Dawn dish soap is an effective and cheap option to kill many harmful backyard pests. Making sure that you dilute it, mix it well, and spray plants that can handle the soap spray will give you the best results.
Always rinse off the Dawn spray once it has dried as it wont be much good as an insecticide and this will protect your plant.report this ad
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Monique loves gardening and spending time in her backyard, where she grows flowers, succulents, herbs, fruits, and vegetables.
Monique spends a lot of time researching how to protect her backyard from harmful pests and trying to attract beneficial insects and animals.
She shares everything that she learns and tests here at Backyard Pests.
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