Folk Remedies for the Garden

A very small translucent bug on leaf
Thrips are an insect which cause damage to garden plants.

Many folk remedies for the garden are used to prevent damage causing insects while leaving unharmed beneficial insects, beneficial animals, and the garden plants. One insect known to cause damage to a variety of garden plants are thrips. The damaged caused by a thrip appears in the form of a collection of tiny white dots. They are essentially "scars" left after the thrip feeds from the leaf simliar to the way a mosquito feeds on humans.

Oregano leaves damaged with tiny white dots
Damaged caused by thrips appear in the form of tiny white dots on the leaves of plants.

Here is a recipe for an effective and safe home remedy to use in place of an insecticide that is also effective against thrips:

1 Gallon of water
5 TBSP of unscented dish soap (like Dawn or Ajax)

Mix well and spray on plants. To repel chewing insects, add a few cloves of garlic and let the solution sit overnight.

Other examples of folk remedies for controlling pest in the garden include slathering stems with vasoline to deter chewing insects; placing equal parts soy sauce and olive oil in an open container in the ground to draw centipedes and earwigs (they drowed in the container). Folk remedies are also used in other ways.


Possibilities of the use of home remedies in the garden is limitless. Some, such as composting or the use of manuer in fertilization, have been in use for thousands of years. Spreading coffee grounds around will enrich soil or plants with a nitrogen deficiency. Ground banana peels are good for soil with a potassium deficiency.