Mother Earth Living

Natural Pesticides: Garlic and Chile Insecticidal Soap Spray

In this insecticidal soap spray, garlic and chile are used to deter common pests.
By Susan Belsinger and Tina Marie Wilcox
June/July 2008
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Fend off pesky insects with this Garlic and Chile Insecticidal Soap Spray.
Photo by Mina/Fotolia


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Susan has been making this Garlic and Chile Insecticidal Soap Spray for more than 20 years. In late summer, she routinely sprays this on plants before bringing them indoors for winter. Tina adds 10 drops cinnamon, vetiver or eucalyptus essential oil when she makes it.

• 10 to 12 large cloves garlic
• 4 to 6 hot chile peppers, dried or fresh
• Generous 2 cups water
• 1 tablespoon liquid castile soap 
• 10 drops cinnamon, vetiver or eucalyptus essential oil, optional

1. Put garlic, chiles and water into a blender and puree contents until foamy.

2. Let mixture stand at least 2 hours or overnight. When mixture settles, you will have a coral-colored liquid with sediment at bottom.

3. Pour through a strainer lined with fine cheesecloth (or through a coffee filter or jelly bag) to remove particles that could block the sprayer valve.

4. Pour concentrate into a jar with a plastic lid (not metal), add soap, stir and label.

5. Store in a cool, dark place until needed, up to a few months. For a 1-quart or 1-liter spray bottle, use 2 tablespoons concentrate and fill the rest of the bottle with water.

6. Spray plants late in the day, so the hot sun can’t burn the plants. Cover the top and bottom of leaves. Reapply Garlic and Chile Insecticidal Soap Spray as often as needed, but allow several days between applications.


Tina Marie Wilcox and Susan Belsinger are longtime Herb Companion contributors. 

Click here for the main article, What’s Wrong with My Herbs: Natural Pesticides for Gardens.








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