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Best Ever Garlic Spray for Garden Pests

Best Ever Garlic Spray for Garden Pests

Ever since my friend Doug Harp told me about the great results he got from using soap spray on the gypsy moths that had infested his apple trees, I’ve worked on perfecting the ideal insecticidal soap spray recipe that will work on a wide variety of garden pests.

This is it. It’s fast and easy to make, economical, non-toxic to the environment and to our own bodies – and it works!

Soap has been used for centuries as an all-purpose pesticide. It disrupts insects’ cell membranes, and kills pests by dehydration. The key is not to use too much soap, or you’ll also kill the vegetation near the pests. If you follow the proportions of soap to water in the Basic Soap Spray recipe, below, the vegetation should be fine.

Note: Buy a liquid soap, NOT a detergent. Health food stores have liquid soaps, such as Dr. Bronner’s Pure-Castile Soaps.

Basic Soap Spray
1 to 2 tablespoons liquid soap
1 quart water

Combine ingredients in a bucket, mix, then transfer to a spray bottle as needed.

Garlic Variation
1 to 2 heads garlic, chopped
Enough boiling water to cover

Put garlic in the bottom of a mason jar and cover with boiling water. Put lid on and allow to sit overnight, then strain and add garlic-water to the soap spray. This will decay, so be sure to freeze leftovers until ready to use again.

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By Annie B. Bond

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Annie B. Bond

Annie is a renowned expert in non-toxic and green living. She was named one of the top 20 environmental leaders by Body and Soul Magazine and "the foremost expert on green living." - Body & Soul Magazine, 2009. Learn Annie's latest eco-friendly news on, a website dedicated to healthy and green living.


+ add your own
7:40PM PDT on Jul 22, 2015

Excellent. Thank you for letting readers know to freeze the left overs! Saved me from cleaning up a moldy botttle.

9:10PM PDT on Jul 18, 2015


3:39PM PDT on Jul 14, 2015

thank you

5:58PM PDT on Jul 12, 2015

Interesting. I will definitely try the insect spray idea. Can't use chemicals because I like having birds around.

5:06AM PDT on Jul 10, 2015


9:26AM PDT on Jul 9, 2015

thank you

9:23AM PDT on Jul 9, 2015

thank you

8:41PM PDT on Jul 8, 2015

Thanks. You can also plant garlic around your other plants to discourage rabbits and deer.

7:09PM PDT on Jul 8, 2015

cool thanks

7:08AM PDT on Jul 8, 2015

This is fantastic. I can drastically cut down on the chemicals in the garden

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Disclaimer: The views expressed above are solely those of the author and may not reflect those of
Care2, Inc., its employees or advertisers.

people are talking

Yum, vegan Hoppin' John is one of my favorite black-eyed pea dishes! We eat it every New Year's Day…

Thanks for the post - I'd completely forgotten how much I enjoy them.

Doesn't matter what plants I try to grow, the cats always eat them!

Yay! Thanks for sharing. Great article.


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