Share by e-mail Print This Post

4 Natural Remedies to keep Pests out of the Garden

Planting a garden is good for your health and your wallet!  But after all your toil, nothing is more upsetting than seeing your crop eaten up or mangled by pests. Here are some natural, unexpected household items to keep the pests at bay.

Panty Hose

Panty hose have endless uses in the garden. Stretch a pair of panty hose over your baby tomato plants to keep birds, squirrels and other animals out of them. You can pull a pair over almost any small fruit, vegetable or small wire cage to keep the bugs away.  Pantyhose are versatile!  They’re also helpful in preventing ground rot in melons!  Slide a newly-formed melon into the foot of one of your old nylons, then tie the other end to a stake so that the melon is hanging just above the ground as it grows.

Egg Shells

Instead of tossing your egg shells into the trash, how about you throw them in the garden? They keep deer and elk from snacking on your plants. You don’t even have to worry about crushing them up first if you don’t want to. Crushed or halved–it doesn’t matter. They have the added benefit of making a lovely fertilizer.

Cayenne Pepper

Cayenne pepper is great for keeping bugs, especially ants, away from your garden. Simply sprinkle the spicy stuff on top of the dirt in your garden. You will have to add more on a regular basis as watering will wash it away. If you have a dog that rejoices in digging up your garden the cayenne should help stop his busy paws from ruining your hard work. It helps keep cats from using your garden as their own personal litter box, as well.

Dish Soap

A dish soap and water solution sprayed over your plants is the perfect way to keep aphids away. In a clean spray bottle mix 1 part dish soap to 10 parts water. Spray it over your plants, and the aphids will go find their lunches elsewhere. A small amount of dish soap will not harm your plants or anyone who eats them.

With just a few items we’ve all got at home, you can protect your garden for a fraction of the cost of buying specially prepared pesticides!

Leave a Reply

73 thoughts on “4 Natural Remedies to keep Pests out of the Garden”

  1. Anonymous says:

    Ok not thinking I seen snails in sqaush and poored some salt can it hurt them ??? It hasnt rained yet so please help me quik. Thanks

  2. Kristy Leach says:

    I just paíd $ 22.85 for an íPad 2-64GB and my girlfriend loves her Panasonic Lumix GF 1 Camera that we got for $ 38.76 there arriving tomorrow by UPS. I will never pay such expensive retail prices in stores again. Especially when I also sold a 40 inch LED TV to my boss for $ 674 which only cost me $ 62.81 to buy. Here is the website we use to get it all from, Centb.côm

  3. Kristy Leach says:

    I just paíd $ 22.85 for an íPad 2-64GB and my girlfriend loves her Panasonic Lumix GF 1 Camera that we got for $ 38.76 there arriving tomorrow by UPS. I will never pay such expensive retail prices in stores again. Especially when I also sold a 40 inch LED TV to my boss for $ 674 which only cost me $ 62.81 to buy. Here is the website we use to get it all from, Centb.côm

  4. CB says:

    Planting Marigolds around the garden edge will keep away the squirrels! After living in Georgia where the squirrels are everywhere, my neighbor noticed only one thriving garden in our neighborhood. The garden owner told her secret about Marigolds and my neighbor tried it and she has never had a squirrel problem since!

    • Anonymous says:

      I didn’t know marigolds would keep the squirrels away. Thanks for the tip! Now if I could only keep those pesky squirrels from eating the padding on my swing…

    • Anonymous says:

      I didn’t know marigolds would keep the squirrels away. Thanks for the tip! Now if I could only keep those pesky squirrels from eating the padding on my swing…

  5. Erin Ellis says:

    I am SO glad this was posted! I just commented on the link with “free Roundup” in it. This is an awesome way we can take care of our children and our future–by doing things naturally! On the dish soap issue: some companies can make dish soap with some pretty crazy chemicals, ones that work amazing on the dishes but maybe not something you want to spray on your plants. Try finding an organic way to make homemade dish soap. It will probably be cheaper and much less harmful to your body. Just an example–I just learned how to make my own laundry soap. It costs less than $5 and will last my boyfriend and I at LEAST 6 months. How awesome is that?! (Its the 18 kids and counting recipe. It lasts them 2-3 months). Happy gardening!

  6. Angela Yoder says:

    ground up orange peels are good for keeping ants away from pepper plants. they hate that stuff!

  7. Couponjennychef says:

    How about rabbits?! We have an overabundance of rabbits in our town and they LOVE my habanero pepper plants, peas and beans. Thanks!

  8. Couponjennychef says:

    How about rabbits?! We have an overabundance of rabbits in our town and they LOVE my habanero pepper plants, peas and beans. Thanks!

    • Mollyann1125 says:

      I mentioned this above – marigolds – i have marigolds everywhere, in the ground and in pots that I can move to where I need them – works wonders!

  9. Reneepierce says:

    I heard from a hairdresser that cut human hair is great for keeping deer out.

  10. Lizflyn says:

    Just bought a home in Fl. and those nasty cockroaches are appearing in my garage at night and some of them get into the house occasionally. Any natural cures for those boogers?

  11. Linz says:

    I love all the household and family posts you’ve been giving us lately!

  12. Anonymous says:

    I just p a i d $21.87 for an i P a d 2-64GB and my boyfriend loves his Panasonîc Lumîx GF 1 Camera that we got for $38.76 there arriving tomorrow by UPS.I will never pay such expensive retail prices in stores again. Especially when I also sold a 40 inch LED TV to my boss for $657 which only cost me $62.81 to buy.
    Here is the website we use to get it all from, http://bit.ly/GrabPenny

  13. Denise says:

    These are such awesome tips! Thank you so much!

  14. Bethany says:

    I think you are supposed to put only boiled egg shells in the garden if you are going to be eating from it. Otherwise, I believe, salomonella can pass from the shell to the plant and eventually to your food.

  15. Ana says:

    I put tabasco sauce and water in a spray bottle and spray the plants – it “burns” the bugs but not the plants. I get nasty beetles on my lilies and it works great.

  16. Dakota01son says:

    if you have an extra spray bottle take onion peels garlic and a drop or two of dawn dish soap let sit for a few days then lightly spray at dusk over plants it will keep most bugs away for a week at a time

  17. Caileam says:

    For anyone looking to keep deer away, and it may work for elk too, look into companion planting. Deer rely on their sense of smell to tell them if an area is safe, if food is good to eat etc. You can plant marigolds, onions and garlic to keep them away. They’ll smell it, it smells bitter and they won’t want to dig in. I usually plant a few pots of marigolds and put them at the edges of my garden, then mix my onions and garlic in if I have to have an open space. Past that, fence in your gardens with chicken wire and make the plots small enough (8×8-10 ft is usually good enough) that they won’t want to jump in, because they won’t be able to get back out. From what I hear, human urine also keeps deer away as I mentioned to someone else. I’ve never been told to mix anything with it, just have the guys mark their territory around the area your garden is in, but not in it.

    • Anonymous says:

      Marigolds are good for keeping the mosquito population down too!

    • Mollyann1125 says:

      Irish Spring Soap keeps the deer out of my yard – I just use an old grater – grate a bar of it and sprinkle it around – no deer – and it isn’t quite as gross as human urine. I’ve also use dog fur in some old nylons – I hang it from the tomato cages – knock on wood – but so far – so good!

    • Mollyann1125 says:

      Irish Spring Soap keeps the deer out of my yard – I just use an old grater – grate a bar of it and sprinkle it around – no deer – and it isn’t quite as gross as human urine. I’ve also use dog fur in some old nylons – I hang it from the tomato cages – knock on wood – but so far – so good!

    • Mollyann1125 says:

      Irish Spring Soap keeps the deer out of my yard – I just use an old grater – grate a bar of it and sprinkle it around – no deer – and it isn’t quite as gross as human urine. I’ve also use dog fur in some old nylons – I hang it from the tomato cages – knock on wood – but so far – so good!

  18. Traci says:

    banana peels keep aphids away!

  19. DeeDee says:

    Does anyone have a solution for getting rid of the dang green worms that are eating the heck out of my tomatoes? They aren’t eating the leaves, just the fruit!

    • Anonymous says:

      The best way to get rid of them is to pull them off the plant and drown them in a bucket of water. You can always plant fennel next to your tomato plnats. It attracts wasps which are natual predators to the worms. Plus, the worms like fennel too and will pay less attention to your tomatos

  20. Nannyof03 says:

    Squash bugs took over my squash and killed them. What do you do to keep them out of your garden. Thanks in advance for your help.

    • Caileam says:

      You have to find them and kill them. If your squash are just gone by now it might not be a big deal, but if you’re trying to preserve what you have left you have to get rid of them. Are they squash borrers? If so, they’ll probably still be in the stems of the plants and you can cut them out to kill them. The plant is done anyway, so may as well do what you can to preserve what’s left.

  21. Anonymous says:

    I just p a i d $21.87 for an i P a d 2 – 64 G.B and my boyfrîend loves his Pänasoniic Lumíx GF 1 Camera that we got for $38.76 there arriving tomorrow by U P S.I will never pay such expensive retail prices in stores again. Especially when I also sold a 40 inch L.E.D T.V to my boss for $657 which only cost me $62.81 to buy.
    Here is the we bsite we use to get it all from, http://bit.ly/GrabPenny

  22. mema says:

    Does any one have any suggestions on ground moles. We are covered in them.

    • Dgatorfan says:

      We do too… GRRRRR.. Try putting out a lot of pin wheels… the clicking noise they make when they spin drives them nuts, and they move on… Also, along with that… Try this.. sounds gross but works.. Human urine… (first morning one’s are the best) 2 cups human urine, 1/2 cup of castor oil, 3 tablespoons of baby shampoo, pour into a one gallon pump sprayer- fill the rest the way with water.
      Walk through and around the garden to find their tunnels. Do not destroy the tunnels, but poke a hole large enough for sprayer nozzle to fit in. Insert the nozzle into tunnel and spray, spray, spray. Make sure that area is very wet with spray. Do this in several places until you run out of spray. What happens is the spray gets onto their coat, and they take the smell back to their home… and Momma doesn’t like a smelly home… ( we sprayed 3 times over the 2 week period) But we did garden and huge yard). Also controlling bugs in garden area is also helpful. They are there to eat the bugs, but damage everything else in the mean time.

    • Dgatorfan says:

      We do too… GRRRRR.. Try putting out a lot of pin wheels… the clicking noise they make when they spin drives them nuts, and they move on… Also, along with that… Try this.. sounds gross but works.. Human urine… (first morning one’s are the best) 2 cups human urine, 1/2 cup of castor oil, 3 tablespoons of baby shampoo, pour into a one gallon pump sprayer- fill the rest the way with water.
      Walk through and around the garden to find their tunnels. Do not destroy the tunnels, but poke a hole large enough for sprayer nozzle to fit in. Insert the nozzle into tunnel and spray, spray, spray. Make sure that area is very wet with spray. Do this in several places until you run out of spray. What happens is the spray gets onto their coat, and they take the smell back to their home… and Momma doesn’t like a smelly home… ( we sprayed 3 times over the 2 week period) But we did garden and huge yard). Also controlling bugs in garden area is also helpful. They are there to eat the bugs, but damage everything else in the mean time.

      • Caileam says:

        I have heard that human urine will also keep deer away. No need to add anything according to what I’ve been told (but I’ve never tried it).

  23. Christina says:

    Any tips on keeping rodents out? Rats keeps eating our tomatoes just as they start turning red, as well as the carrot tops and sugar snap peas. Even ate half of a jalepeno the other day! Very discouraging! We have tried the old-fashioned traps, but are hoping there is something to repel or deter them since we can’t catch them all.

    • Scriptorcarmina says:

      You could try cayenne pepper spray, but that doesn’t always work on rats. The only surefire way to get rid of rats is to borrow a cat for a few days.

    • Chieftrina says:

      Here’s another I heard on the radio yesterday. They say a bucket with BEER! And a ramp….lol. They got into the bucket to drink and can’t get back out! Yuck!! Let me know how it goes! Chieftrina@yahoo.com

  24. I have woolly aphids and will try the soapy water. Any other ideas/suggestions?

    • Scriptorcarmina says:

      I posted my organic gardening spray recipe above. That should work a little better on the aphids.

  25. (de) diatomaceous earth

  26. (de) diatomaceous earth

  27. Reddebbie_1 says:

    Oregano leaf keeps squirrels away. Sprinkle in top of your potted plants or hang small cheesecloth / pantyhose bags in larger plants. They were cutting my wisteria to bits, did this and two days later no squirrels!

  28. Reddebbie_1 says:

    Oregano leaf keeps squirrels away. Sprinkle in top of your potted plants or hang small cheesecloth / pantyhose bags in larger plants. They were cutting my wisteria to bits, did this and two days later no squirrels!

  29. Kellysinnh says:

    how about my cat using my flower bed mulch as a bathroom…. I know cayenne pepper but that worries me that it will hurt her eyes, etc… any other suggestions?

  30. Kellysinnh says:

    how about my cat using my flower bed mulch as a bathroom…. I know cayenne pepper but that worries me that it will hurt her eyes, etc… any other suggestions?

    • Anonymous says:

      I used cayenne pepper to deter my cat and he never seemed hurt by it. I also panted catnip for him at the end of one of my flower beds. He left my other plants and beds alone after that!

  31. Scriptorcarmina says:

    Eggshells also kill slugs. Chewing gum kills gophers, just put a half stick down their hole. Wind chimes and pinwheels and whirligigs (especially the shiny kind) scare away blackbirds. The vibration from pinwheels scare away burrowing creatures.

    Here’s my organic gardening spray recipe: soak a crushed clove of garlic and some cayenne pepper in some vegetable oil overnight or all day while you’re at work. Strain into an old Windex bottle. Add a couple drops dish soap and a tablespoon of baking soda. Fill the bottle with HOT water (this will activate the soap). Spray at dusk if you have anything in the squash family or the leaves will burn from the soap.

    The garlic keeps most bugs away. The pepper keeps the rodents away (squirrels, bunnies, etc.) The baking soda fights any diseases the plants might have. The soap kills soft-bodied bugs by going into their system and dehydrating them. The vegetable oil carries the scent of the garlic and the cayenne pepper.

    Hope this helps!

  32. Scriptorcarmina says:

    Eggshells also kill slugs. Chewing gum kills gophers, just put a half stick down their hole. Wind chimes and pinwheels and whirligigs (especially the shiny kind) scare away blackbirds. The vibration from pinwheels scare away burrowing creatures.

    Here’s my organic gardening spray recipe: soak a crushed clove of garlic and some cayenne pepper in some vegetable oil overnight or all day while you’re at work. Strain into an old Windex bottle. Add a couple drops dish soap and a tablespoon of baking soda. Fill the bottle with HOT water (this will activate the soap). Spray at dusk if you have anything in the squash family or the leaves will burn from the soap.

    The garlic keeps most bugs away. The pepper keeps the rodents away (squirrels, bunnies, etc.) The baking soda fights any diseases the plants might have. The soap kills soft-bodied bugs by going into their system and dehydrating them. The vegetable oil carries the scent of the garlic and the cayenne pepper.

    Hope this helps!

  33. Anonymous says:

    I just paíd $21.87 for an íPad 2-64GB and my boyfriend loves his Panasoníc Lumíx GF 1 Camera that we got for $38.76 there arriving tomorrow by UPS.I will never pay such expensive retail prices in stores again. Especially when I also sold a 40 inch L E D T V to my boss for $657 which only cost me $62.81 to buy.
    Here is the website we use to get it all from, http://bit.ly/GrabPenny

  34. Erin says:

    Any suggestions as to how to keep slugs away! Not only are they the nastiest creatures alive, they are one of my biggest problems! Arg!!!

    • Joanie says:

      I hate slugs! We’ve almost purchased ducks on numerous occasions because they eat the slugs. But, since I didn’t want to trade duck-poop for a slug free yard, I never went for it. Something for ever woman to consider. :)

    • Scriptorcarmina says:

      Eggshells around the plant and sprinkle used coffee grounds over the top of the plant. They won’t cross a line of eggshells because they’re too spiky and the coffee grounds kill them by going into their skin and dehydrating them. Most coffee shops will give you leftover grounds if you ask.

    • Laura says:

      Put a coffee mug 1/2 full of beer in your troubled slug area. They climb up the mug, have a sip and get drunk and can’t get back out. We had a slug problem in my Moms garden one year and she did this and caught 40 or more in one night. Put fresh beer in the cup and start over if you don’t get all of them. Honestly, it works.

    • Dawn says:

      Dig a small hole so a soda can to go into the ground level. (with ground) Pour in about 2 inch of beer, and the slugs will make it to the can, fall in, and they are done for… Also, you can mix up so yeast and water and use that… They like the smell of the yeast. I have even used a foam paper bowl. I put the bowl out right before dark, came back the next morning, and had 10 or so dead slugs. Put in multiple spots if you have a large space or a lot of slugs. hope this helps

    • Dakota01son says:

      copper will keep them at bay and you can also put salt on the otter bounds to keep them away

    • Shellee says:

      Circle the area you would like to protect with ash from a wood stove. They won’t cross the barrier.

    • Chieftrina says:

      I heard it on the radio just yesterday! Beer! Put beer in a low sided bowl or flat dish….they slide right in and die! Let me know how it works…..chieftrina@yahoo.com

  35. Don’t forget old coffee grounds are great for rose plants and other plants. It brings nitrogen, magnesium, calcium, potassium, and other trace minerals to the soil.

  36. Ifeelfine125@gmail.com says:

    Cream of wheat sprinkled on an ant hill will get rid of them all within a day. They eat it and then bring it back to their lair… Cream of wheat expands… Poof. Gone.

  37. Anonymous says:

    I just paíd $20.87 for an íPad 2.64GB and my boyfriend loves his Panasoníc Lumíx GF 1 Camera that we got for $38.76 there arriving tomorrow by UP S.I will never pay such expensive retail prices in stores again. Especially when I also sold a 40 inch L E D T V to my boss for $657 which only cost me $62.81 to buy.
    Here is the website we use to get it all from, to.ly/aXoC