Plant Instructions has created a treasure trove of solutions for managing garden pests naturally. Using dandelion spray is one of them. Although dandelions have a bad rap for being weeds, they’re actually great medicinal plants with tons of uses!
To create your own powerful Dandelion Spray at home:
mix 2 cups of dandelion leaves with 2 1/2 gallons of water. Let it steep for about 3 hours, and pour into a garden sprayer
Spray directly onto affected plants being sure to spray under the leaves. Aphids often hid and lay eggs under the leaves, so be sure the leaf’s underside is not forgotten.
My advise to pull everything from the dandelion while steeping is to tear each leaf in half before covering with water. Because we are not steeping using heat, tearing the leaf will permit the natural oils and liquids from the dandelion leaf to saturate the water during the 3 hour steep.
Once the natural dandelion aphid killer does the trick, Bob Villa and Jennifer Noonan share the following tips to reduce the risk of further infestation by using these aphid control techniques to prevent the pests from returning.
- Introduce beneficial bugs. Bugs like lady beetles, lacewings, and parasitic wasps love making aphids a scrumptious meal.
- Apply dormant oil. Aphids love fruit trees. If you have battled aphids all season, apply dormant commercial oil to controls pests during the off-season, in mid- to late-winter to kill any eggs over winter months.
- Choose neighboring plants strategically. Oregano, chive, sage, garlic, leeks, onions, and other plants with strong scents can deter aphids from reentering your garden. Plant these in the areas of your garden where aphids have been a problem and near newly rotated crops.