Looking for a fast and easy way to get rid of the aphids on your vegetable plants? And without having to resort to questionable commercial sprays that might compromise your harvest?
Aphids can cause major damage to vegetable gardens. Not only can aphid attacks stunt the growth of plants by damaging their stems, leaves and fruit – they can also spread disease, mold and fungus to nearly all of the plants growing in your garden.
As aphids feed on plants, they leave a sticky substance behind on the foliage known as honeydew. As sweet at the term sounds, honeydew actually causes a lot of issues for plants. For starters, the sappy substance is ideal for allowing mold and fungus to develop on the plants.
In addition to helping mold and fungus flourish, aphids also happen to be a major carrier of viruses. As they travel from plant to plant, they can easily infect and spread deadly diseases with incredible efficiency. In fact, when it comes to aphids damaging vegetable plants, the disease and health issues they bring to your garden are far more dangerous and deadly than the small insects simply feeding on your plants.
The Almost Invisible Pest – How To Get Rid Of Aphids
One of the hardest aspects of dealing with aphids is finding them in the first place. Aphids, for the most part, love to hang out on the undersides of leaves. If you are not diligently looking out for them, they can go unnoticed while their population grows. And it grows faster than you might ever think.
Aphids reproduce in the blink of an eye. Without intervention, aphids can grow their population five to six times in just a week to ten days!
How To Get Rid Of Aphids On Vegetable Plants
So now that we know how much destruction aphids bring – and how quickly they can take over – how do you get rid of them quickly and safely? And even better, once you do, how can you prevent them from becoming an issue again?
One thing is for sure, it doesn’t take harsh chemicals or insecticides to rid your garden and plants of aphids. Chemical pesticides can be scary to use on vegetable plants. Not only is there a concern for the vegetables you will consume, they also can kill off many of the beneficial insects in a garden as well.
The good news is that it’s easy to create your own 100% organic and highly effective aphid spray. Not only are they safe for plants, they can be safe to other insects as well. With that in mind, here are three of the “best of the best” all-natural aphids sprays to stop aphids in your garden this year!
3 Simple Ways To Get Rid Of Aphids On Vegetable Plants
No matter which spray you choose to use below, the real key to success is persistence and diligence. Check your garden regularly for aphids.
The sooner you find a growing population, the easier it will be to get under control. In addition, it can often take a few applications to really control aphids. Always check plants a day or so after spraying to be sure aphids are completely gone.
#1) Water & Liquid Dish Soap – How To Get Rid Of Aphids On Vegetable Plants
One of the fastest and easiest methods to get rid of aphids is by making a simple homemade spray of water & a mild liquid dish soap. This basic solution works great for small to medium size infestations. By simply spraying it on the leaves of your vegetable plants, it will kill off the aphids in quick fashion.
Although you use any mild liquid detergent, there are some incredibly good organic options on the market if you want to stay with a 100% all natural method. Product Affiliate Link: Pure Castile Soap – 100% Organic Liquid Soap
The oil residue in soap interferes with the outer protective layer of the aphids. Once gone, the aphids dry out and perish. The best thing about using a soap and water mixture is that it will not kill important pollinators like butterflies and bees.
To make, use two teaspoons of liquid dish soap and mix with one gallon of water. Shake well and apply to the plants. Make sure to hit the underside of the leaves where the aphids like to hide out.
It is important to note that spraying this mixture on plants will not prevent aphids, but it does kill existing populations quite quickly. For bigger infestations, you will need to spray more than once to eliminate the aphids totally.
Cayenne Pepper Spray – How To Get Rid Of Aphids On Vegetable Plants
If you have a severe aphid problem, it might be time to add a little more heat to your water and dish soap spray. As in cayenne pepper heat!
Hot pepper spray is actually effective on many insects. Even better, it can often be sprayed on plants to help small animals from munching on leaves as well. But when added to the dish soap and water mixture listed above, it will take out large infestations of aphids in quick fashion.
To make, create the soap and water spray above, then mix two tablespoons of cayenne pepper powder in with it. Shake or stir and allow the mix to steep for a few hours. You made need to reapply in a few days to get any remaining aphids that are still alive.
Neem Oil – How To Get Rid Of Aphids On Vegetable Plants
If you are looking for a highly effective, ready-to-go and yet still 100% organic spray, neem oil is the answer. See our article: How To Use Neem Oil On Plants – Control Pests Organically
Neem oil has been used for hundreds of years in the battle to control aphids and many other garden insects. It is an all-natural extract derived from the seeds of a Neem tree. When mixed with water and applied to plants, it can be quite effective in eliminating aphids.
Coincidentally, it also works well in repelling beetles, leaf miners, ants and cabbage worms as well. To use, mix 1 teaspoon of Neem oil with 1 quart of water. Apply with hand-held pump or bottle sprayer to the foliage of affected plants. Product Link : Neem Oil
Don’t Forget Companion Planting! How To Get Rid Of Aphids On Vegetable Plants
Beyond battling active aphid populations, you can also help deter aphids from coming into your garden by strategically growing plants they don’t like. This can be done by planting them directly in your garden soil, or by planting pots and placing them around your garden in areas where aphids are present.
Garlic, onions and chives are all well-known to deter aphids. In addition, dill, fennel, rosemary and chives are four herbs that not only attract beneficial insects to the garden, but also repel aphids as well.
If you want to really brighten up your vegetable garden and keep aphids away at the same time, consider growing marigolds, petunias or lavender. Not only will they add big color, all three are well known to keep aphids far away.
Here is to protecting your vegetable garden from aphids – and to a bigger and better harvest than ever this year!
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