Are Pests A Problem In Your Home?

Got Bugs?

You don’t want to poison your space with a can of Raid, so what DO you use?

There’s way too many toxins in our lives and the desire to be more and more natural and safe is growing in intensity.  I’m passing along some of this info I read in a magazine recently that offers some safe ways to get rid of some pesky bugs in our homes.

All-natural repellent, Repellex Bug-A-Tak, www.planetnatural.com contains mint, clove leaf and rosemary essential oils that deter and kill beetles, mites, whiteflies and others.

Instead of using moth balls – which can ruin the thing you are protecting for decades – just ask me about my briefcase full of my original music compositions that was stored near moth balls in the 90s.*  Sachets filled with lavender, cedar chips and citronella can keep moths from chewing up your prized wool sweater.

Keep food items in airtight containers once they’re opened.

Mice. They won’t come around much if they smell dog or cat. If you don’t have one, why not rescue and adopt one or two from your local shelter?

DIY Repellents:

Ants – hate citrus. Mix 1/4 cup citrus solvent like Citra Solv with 2 cups water, spray mixture in ant-traffic areas.

Fruit Flies – hate basil. Keep a basil plant in the kitchen near your fruit.

Roaches – tea tree oil, garlic, peppermint, bay leaves, and hot peppers are all on their shit list. Pick one of these oils or herbs and mix 2 tsp oil or fresh crushed herbs (2 Tbsp if dry ground herbs) into 2 cups water and spray around the infested areas.

Fleas – Limonene and linalool in citrus peel extract kil all stages of a flea’s life cycle. Cut 4 lemons and simmer for 1 hour in a quart of water, adding water as needed, cool, strain and massage mixture into your dog’s coat. Cats’ don’t much care for this treatment.

*I was told by a friend that vodka in a spray bottle is a good remedy for ridding moth ball smells from clothes – I’ll have to try it on my sheet music and see if it works on that too.  Since I’m on the subject of ridding things of smells, a musty basement can be fixed with 1/2 an onion on a plate left overnight.

I wonder if there could be  sound frequency vibrations that might offer another pest deterrent that wouldn’t be harmful to plants, pets and people…

update 10/27/10

Here’s some info I found on a Natural Mosquito Repellent recipe in case you don’t like putting DEET on your skin.

Thanks to motherearthnews.com for this.

Herbal Insect Repellent

2 1/2 teaspoons total of any combination of the following essential oils: basil, cedarwood, citronella, juniper, lemon, myrrh, palmarosa, pine, rose geranium and/or rosemary (available at health food stores)

1 cup 190-proof grain alcohol (available in liquor stores) [my input – a good vodka would probably work too]

Place ingredients in a jar with a tight-fitting lid and shake vigorously. Transfer to small bottles for storage. To use, rub a small amount on any exposed skin (test first to be sure your skin will not be adversely affected by the repellent) or dab it on clothing.

Experiment a little to find which essential oils work best with your body chemistry. If you’re lucky, you also will like the way they smell; otherwise, add a few drops of peppermint oil to fine-tune the fragrance.