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14 Ways To Avoid And Deal With Indoor Plant Pests

14 Ways To Avoid And Deal With Indoor Plant Pests

Indoor plant pests can multiply rapidly and infest plant life throughout the course of a year. A plant and its soil harbors common garden pests, like spider mites, aphids, ants, whiteflies, pill and mealy bugs, to name just a few.

Most indoor plant pests can be easily controlled with early detection and a quick response. However, not all plants can be saved.

Spots of mold, yellowing foliage, wilting and holes in the leaves of indoor plants are all signs of a weak plant. Plants that are healthy and strong can withstand infestations from indoor plant pests better than weaker and more feeble ones.

It’s best to dispose of a diseased plant if it is not expensive and rare. Another healthier specimen can be obtained at a later date.

Ways to Deal with Indoor Plant Pests

If indoor plant pests are affecting your houseplants, a wide range of biological pesticides, such as insecticidal soap, can be used around the home without harming its other inhabitants.

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1. Use only appropriate pesticides. Carefully read product labels in order to be sure a pesticide is suited for the problem being treated, as well as ensuring the product is not harmful to the plant.

2. Use organic pesticides. A variety of efficient organic insecticides and miticides are available, including rubbing alcohol, pyrethrine, insecticidal soap, rotenone and diatomaceous earth.

Additionally, powdered sulfur is a good organic fungicide.

3. Wash plants with mild, soapy water and rinse the leaves with warm water to get rid of indoor plant pests.

4. Remove egg sacs, cocoons, or webs found on plants with a cotton swab dipped with isopropyl alcohol.

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Ways to Avoid Indoor Plant Pests

A more natural way to prevent or remove indoor plant pests is to use other plants that contain certain properties to repel harmful insects.

Selecting plants that control insect pests not only saves time and money, but it is a more environmentally friendly way to prevent and control an indoor plant pest infestation.

1. Know the specific needs for each plant, in order to improve growing.  Most indoor plants prefer to be closer to light sources and brighter areas.

Some plants benefit from a supply of artificial lighting.

2. Regularly apply the appropriate amount of fertilizer to plants throughout the growing season.

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3. Use only pasteurized potting mixes and carefully isolate new plants after purchasing, as it helps in avoiding most indoor plant pests and disease problems.

4. Improve the air circulation around houseplants.

5. Repel mosquitoes, flies and thrips with basil. Planting basil alongside tomato plants helps in fending off indoor plant pests and, in most cases, helps in growing larger, tastier tomatoes.

6. Deter aphids, carrot root flies, Japanese beetles, moths, snails and maggots with garlic plants.

7. Place lavender around plants, herbs, and vegetables in order to repel fleas and moths.

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8. Plant or place pots of scented marigolds around plants to work as an insect repellant. Mexican marigolds offend wild rabbits and a multitude of destructive insects.

French marigolds kill bad nematodes and repel whiteflies. Note: Marigolds do attract spider mites and snails.

9. Ward off spider mites and aphids with dill.

10. Repel a large variety of indoor plant pests with catnip. Catnip helps to deter ants, weevils, aphids, flea beetles, Japanese beetles and squash bugs.

A satchel of dried catnip helps in deterring ants that invade the home, as well. Catnip called Six Hills Giant is a good plant with sky blue blooms.

Severely infested foliage and flowers should be removed and periodic treatments of washing a plant with insecticidal soap helps in preventing and removing indoor plant pests.

Featured photo credit: House Plants Winter/Howlerbrand via howlerband.com

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George Zapo

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Last Updated on January 11, 2021

11 Hidden Benefits of Using Oil Diffusers

11 Hidden Benefits of Using Oil Diffusers

Affordable, relaxing, and healthy, oil diffusers are gaining popularity with people everywhere due to their extensive benefits. Oil diffusers work through the simple process of oil diffusion, which uses heat to turn oil into a vapor that is then spread around a living space. Diffused oil can have several relaxation and health-related benefits, including safe scent-dispersion, mosquito and mold defense, stress relief, and more!

Read on for 11 hidden benefits of using oil diffusers.

1. Safe Scents That Make Sense

Unlike candles or air fresheners, oil diffusers release cleansing molecules into your air that work to purify it, not overload it with unhealthy chemicals. Electronic diffusers also do not pose the fire risk that candles do. Plus, they contain the added feature of interchangeability, which means you change oil types for different scents and health benefits.

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2. Stress Relief

Several lab studies have confirmed that diffusing essential oils like lavender have been shown to reduce stress and help relieve anxiety in medical patients. Preliminary studies have also shown that oil diffusers can help alleviate symptoms of depression.

3. Improved Sleep

Diffused oil has relaxing properties that can help people of all ages fall asleep quicker and sleep more soundly. Electronic diffusers not only have the option to mix and match different oil blends (Try a lavender, Bulgarian rose, and Roman chamomile blend to help with insomnia), they also run at a gentle hum that helps relax an agitated mind. Many also come with an auto shut-off feature to help conserve oils once you have fallen asleep.

4. Appetite Control

Much like gum, oil diffusers can help stimulate the senses in a way that works to curb appetite. New research has shown that diffused peppermint oil can help curb appetite by inducing a satiety response within the body. Diffused peppermint oil has also been shown to increase energy.

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5. Bacteria and Mold Killing

When essential oils are diffused in the air, they break down free radicals that contribute to the growth of harmful bacteria. Eucalyptus, thyme, and tea tree oils are especially good for this purpose. Diffused oil is also highly effective when it comes to combating fungal yeast threats, as the oil help makes the air inhospitable for yeasts such as mold. Pine and red thyme essential oils are best for combating mold.

6. Decongestion and Mucus Control

Ever tried Vick’s Vapo-Rub? Its decongesting powers come from active ingredients made from the eucalyptus tree. In principle, oil diffusers work the same way as Vapo-Rub, except they diffuse their decongesting vapor all around the room, not just on your chest or neck. Oil diffusers have been known to cure pneumonia in lab mice.

7. Mosquito Repellant

Nobody likes mosquitoes — but when the trade-off means using repellants full of DEET, a toxic chemical that can be especially harmful to children, mosquito control can often seem like a lose-lose. However, scientists have shown that oil diffusers can be used as a safe and highly effective mosquito repellant. Studies have shown that a diffused oil mixture containing clove essential oil and lemongrass essential oil repelled one type of Zika-carrying mosquito, the Aedes aegypti mosquito, at a rate of 100%.

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8. Pain Relief

While applying oils directly to areas of your body may be the most effective way to alleviate pain, diffusing essential oils can also be an effective means of pain relief. When we inhale healthy essential oils, they enter our blood stream and can help internally relieve persistent pain from headaches, overworked muscles, and sore joints.

9. The New Anti-Viral

Research into the anti-viral effects of oil diffusion is now just gaining steam. A recent study showed that star anise essential oil was proven in medical experiments to destroy the herpes simplex virus in contained areas at a rate of 99%. Another study showed the popular DoTerra oil blend OnGuard to have highly-effective influenza-combating powers.

10. Improved Cognitive Function

Diffusing essential oils has also been shown to improve cognitive function. Many essential oils have adaptogenic qualities, which can work twofold in soothing us when we’re stressed, and giving our bodies a pick-me-up when we’re feeling down or sluggish. By working to level out an imbalanced mood, diffused oils also help us to focus. There are also several essential oils which have been shown to help balance the body’s hormones. With prolonged use, these oils can work to repair the underlying causes responsible for hindering cognitive function.

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11. Money Saving

With ten clear benefits of oil diffusers already outlined, there is one more that should now be obvious: using an oil diffuser will help you to save money. As an anti-viral, bug repelling, and stress-relief solution rolled into one safe product, an oil diffuser used with the proper oils will save you money on products you might otherwise be buying to help cure those pesky headaches or get your kids to fall asleep on time. If you’re wondering just how affordable oil diffusers can be, check the buyer’s guide to the best oil diffusers — you’ll be sure to find one that fits your budget!

Featured photo credit: Jopeel Quimpo via unsplash.com

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