Sandy's Garden
Newly Registered
Posts: 2
Joined: Wed Jun 06, 2012 12:29 am
Location: NW Wisconsin

Natural Garden Sprays

I'm having an interesting time with my tomatoes this year. It was an early spring in our region, and the organic tomato seeds I planted in my greenhouse turned out fantastic!

Now that they have been in the garden for a few weeks, they have been subjected to quite a few bugs, and I'm looking for some all natural repellants to use on them.

I've run across several suggestions for a garden spray for pests that uses vegetable oil and dishwashing liquid added to water. My question is that I'd like to know if the type of dishwashing liquid I use is safe to spray on my tomato plants, which is Seventh Generation Free and Clear.

Any information would be very helpful. I don't want to see all my hard work destroyed by insects using my garden as a buffet :-)

User avatar
rainbowgardener
Super Green Thumb
Posts: 25303
Joined: Sun Feb 15, 2009 11:04 pm
Location: TN/GA 7b

7th Generation makes "Dish Liquid" which is

Dish detergent made of natural products

Only if it says SOAP is it soap. Detergent can harm your plants, although that doesn't necessarily mean it will harm them. If you want to use it, I would test your solution on one plant first and see what happens.

A garlic pepper spray is also often recommended. I just posted here

https://www.helpfulgardener.com/forum/viewtopic.php?p=260703#260703

a link to an article with a recipe/ instructions for that.

Whatever you spray with, it is best to only spray where there are problems, not broadcast spray your garden. Even though you are not using poisons, almost anything you can use against a lot of different kinds of insects, can also be harmful to beneficial insects. Try to treat the problem directly.
Twitter account I manage for local Sierra Club: https://twitter.com/CherokeeGroupSC Facebook page I manage for them: https://www.facebook.com/groups/65310596576/ Come and find me and lots of great information, inspiration

User avatar
digitS'
Super Green Thumb
Posts: 3511
Joined: Sun Sep 26, 2010 5:10 pm
Location: ID/Wa! border

This has been my Homemade Insecticidal Soap:

1 Gallon water
3 Tablespoons Palmolive Green dish soap

The idea came from Colorado State University: [url=https://www.ext.colostate.edu/pubs/insect/05547.html]Insect Control: Soaps and Detergents[/url] You can see that I'm using the lowest percentage of soap because of concern about "the risk of plant damage" as the horticulturalists note. I like to spray either in the shade or near sundown and I'm back the next day to rinse them. I don't use the rinsing when I use commercial insecticidal soap, however. You can learn more about these and others: [url=https://www.clemson.edu/extension/hgic/pests/pesticide/hgic2770.html]Less Toxic Insecticides, Clemson University.[/url]

The soap spray works especially well against aphids and spider mites.

Plants may be sensitive to the chemicals and realize, even dish soap contains a number of things that wouldn't be falling on a plant in nature.

Steve
Make everything as simple as possible but not simpler. ~ Albert Einstein

Sandy's Garden
Newly Registered
Posts: 2
Joined: Wed Jun 06, 2012 12:29 am
Location: NW Wisconsin

Well, I did use the spray with the 7th Generation Soap in it on my test tomato plant 48 hours ago and it seems to have no damage to it (phew!) The initial spraying was done at dusk so that there would be no danger of burn from the late day sun and it had enough time to dry before the cool of the evening.

The recipe I used was one Tbsp of dish soap + 1 cup veg oil. Mixed well, add one tbsp of the mixture to 1 cup of water. I saturated the plant pretty good. I was happy to see that none of the bugs have been back on it.

I'll wait another couple days to make sure there are no residual effects to the plant before I use it on others.

Return to “TOMATO FORUM”