Diatomaceous Earth

20150411_104517Have you ever heard of Diatomaceous Earth? Let’s just say it’s kind of the most amazing mineral that was formed 30 million years ago. Diatomaceous Earth (DE) is a substance made up of the fossilized remains of plankton; it looks like an off-white talc powder. The use of diatomaceous earth knows no bounds!  As a gardener it is the best Natural Pesticide.  Studies indicate that this clay-like powder can kill the harmful insects that threaten crops and home life. Due to the incessant use of pesticides, many insects have become resistant to chemical deterrents. This organic pest control method is helpful for reducing the amount of environmental toxins we’re all exposed to. It is Harmless to humans and animals. Food grade DE can actually be consumed by human and animals. It can help to remove intestinal invaders and other harmful organisms from the digestive tract. As an internal cleanser, diatomaceous earth may aid cleansing by supporting regularity and assist in removing toxic metals. Some studies have shown diatomaceous earth to be very successful in ridding animals of harmful organisms. Food-grade diatomaceous earth placed in the feed of livestock may help discourage fleas and other harmful bugs.  Make sure that all diatomaceous earth is labeled “food grade” and is untreated and unheated!  Because DE is a fine powder always use a mask when applying it as it can irritate the mucous membranes in the nose and mouth. Once the DE dust has settled it won’t bother you.

How it works:  Diatomaceous Earth works by dehydrating pests to death. Whether they ingest or just absorb it, the texture of Diatomaceous Earth can literally scratch through the exoskeleton, causing them to dehydrate and die.

How to Use:  Sprinkle dry DE on the soil’s surface where slugs, newly emerged Japanese beetles, or other unwanted pests will come into direct contact with the dry particles. To be effective, the insects must be well coated with the dust. Honeybees and other beneficials have no way to protect themselves from the mechanical effects of DE. When applying DE to plants that are likely to be visited by bees, cover them with an old sheet after treatment so the DE will target pests and the bees can’t get to the plants. Later, uncover the plants, and then wash off the DE with a fine spray of water.  When using Indoors, use a bulb puffer to blow DE into crevices where bugs are likely to hide. You also can puff DE onto newly hatched larvae of many pests.

What Types of Pest does it kill: adult flea beetles, sawfly, coddling moth, twig borer, thrips, mites,  cockroach, slugs, snails and many other insects such as :Aphids, thrips, earwigs, silverfish, ants, spider mites and many other insects. Can be used for bedbugs, cabbage root flies, carrot root flies, fleas, pillbugs, ticks and is helpful in dealing with fungus gnats.