Monday, September 2, 2013

Make Your Own Bug Spray

Regardless of where you stand on using chemical based bug sprays, one thing's for sure, and that is, if you do not keep the harmful insects off your fruits and vegetables, you won’t have much to harvest.

Me personally, I do not like to use any bug sprays made with chemicals. It just makes me feel uncomfortable to spray the food, me and my family is going to eat. What I have learned, over the thirty plus years of gardening, is that you can make your own sprays at home, that can definitely help.

One thing that has been common when searching for solutions to repel bad insects, is that hot pepper is always the number one ingredient of any home made bug spray (most of the time, some web sites differ). The active ingredient in hot peppers is capsaicin (chili peppers actually). Capsaicin will create a burning sensation when it comes in contact with human tissue, so be careful when creating your spray.

As with any spray, you will need to reapply after rain or watering that could wash your homemade spray away. As a note of caution, use care when creating any hot pepper based spray as it can irritate your skin and eyes. So wear protective eyewear and gloves when needed.

In a pot on your stove, add in seven crushed garlic cloves, one tablespoon of powdered cayenne pepper and three cups of water. Heat up mixture, stirring to completely to combine the ingredients. Try not to bring the mixture to a boil as that is not necessary. Set the mixture aside for forty-eight hours as to allow the ingredients to combine. Once combined, add mixture to a hand held spray bottle and begin spraying your plants as needed.

Just remember to wash your fruits and vegetables thoroughly prior to consumption.


  1. Hi. Thanks for the information. I have a question, one I ask frequently. We do not have a regular garden but an aquaponics system. I wonder if this spray would be detrimental to the fish in our system. We are in our second year and have had pretty good luck with growth, but sadly very little makes it to the table because of bugs and squirrels and birds. We are working on closing off the access to the larger creatures but know it will be more difficult to deter bugs. We don't mind sharing...but would really like to get at least a little return for our effort. LOL

  2. Do the vegetables absorb the flavor of the pepper and garlic?