Programming for backyard gardeners, cooking for linux users, drawing for mathematicians. WTF?

20100804

A natural solution for red spider mites

When we came back from our holidays in Iceland, I saw something odd in our celery plant. And after a few days without looking at it, I suddenly saw a whole leaf covered in spider nets. Red spider mites (or araña roja, as it is known in Spanish) were here.

Weather had been very hot and dry while we were away, and although the celery plant was being sprinkled with water instead of watering directly, it got a very hard red spider attack. It looked as we could not save it, and as we had several other plants in the zone, we dumped it, together with soil and pot.

The problem was then what to do with nearby plants. We have a chocolate mint, several tomato plants, lemon thyme and broccoli nearby. All edible plants! So no chemical option was available. Moreover, the mint plant looked somewhat sick, and I saw a small red bug walking around it.

I googled and found these recipes in bonsaigarden.com, and settled for recipe #2. It looked easy and potentially effective, moreover could double as a cat repellent for our neighbours cat (who love to do their things in our garden). And it was a deterrent for uninfected plants! This is the recipe as appears there:
½ - 1 ounce (15-30 gr) Garlic
2-3 ounces (60-90 gr) of onion
½ - 1 ounce (15-30 gr) of cloves
½ - 1 ounce (15-30 gr) of Cayenne pepper

Whiz in your blender with 1 Cup of water till very fine.

Add this mixture to one gallon of room temperature water. This spray must be repeated 3 times at 5-day intervals to kill off freshly hatched mites (the spray will not kill the eggs). If the mixture gets washed off it must be re applied.
I didn't have that much water, so I just mixed some quantities and added water. I have kept on spraying over our plants, and looks like it worked as expected: not a trace of red spiders in one week. Just in case, I'll keep on spraying for a while.

Do you have any other red spider natural solution? And what about greenflies? We had an attack a few months ago... And went with the chemical solution: 60 days without mint for health issues. I would prefer a natural solution next time!

Related posts:
Strawberry seed germination
Lemon seed germination
Earth day give-away project: lemon trees from seed to save the planet
Pineapple seed germination

blog comments powered by Disqus