Outdoors, gardeners can apply it to combat infestations of slugs, Japanese beetles, squash bugs and potato beetles, among other pests. A larger shop or HEPA vacuum will get the job done and not mess with your motor one bit. DE washes away in the rain, so reapplication is necessary after rainfall. Sprinkle the dry powder over a wet spill, then vacuum or sweep it up. Wash off the DE after removing the covers. Pest control. A mineral pesticide valued by organic gardeners, diatomaceous earth is the powdered form of the fossilized remains of oceanic organisms. When you see one bug, you can normally expect a lot more. The consistency is that of a super fine, soft white powder, and DE is an extremely effective and chemical-free pesticide. DE is usually dusted on the surface of plants with a shaker can or dusting applicator. Gardeners should wear a mask, goggles and gloves when handling or applying DE, and those with existing respiratory problems would be wise to avoid use of the dust. When shopping for DE (check out some products below), you’ll want to look for DE labeled as “Food Grade.” That’s right, it’s so harmless to humans you could actually eat the stuff. Once insects contact its minute sharp edges, the DE pierces the insects' waxy coating and causes them to dehydrate. Although DE is nontoxic to humans and animals, there are some precautions you need to take before handling it. Diatomaceous Earth Improve Joint and Ligament Health. When gardening, wear a mask, goggles, and gloves during application and always wash your hands immediately after use. It can be applied within one day of harvest. No, seriously — we were surprised, too. Plus, these bugs are, you know, super creepy. DE can also be mixed with water at the rate of 1/4 cup per 1 gallon of water. Instead, it works as a desiccant that dries out insects and other pests. In the garden diatomaceous earth may be applied as dust with a dust applicator approved for such use; again, it is of the utmost importance to wear a dust mask during application of the diatomaceous earth in this manner and leave the mask on until you have left the dusting area. DE is used indoors to control ants, carpet beetles, bedbugs, fleas and silverfish. Plus, you can always use a broom. Once insects contact its minute sharp edges, the DE pierces the insects' waxy coating and causes them to dehydrate. Use on animals, plants, stored grain & around the house to control household & plant pests; Check Price on Amazon Info last updated 2020-12-18 at 14:42. The nature of diatomaceous earth makes it useful against most types of insect infestation you might be experiencing; and unlike chemical insecticides, insects can’t develop a resistance to the effects of DE. Hunker may earn compensation through affiliate links in this story. Diatomaceous earth most commonly comes in ‘dust form’, is not a poison. However, pest control uses typically involve spreading a more concentrated product within a home. If you are using diatomaceous earth for pest control use food grade or a brand intended for pest control. When purchasing DE, use only those products specifically labeled "food grade" for insect control. Because DE is commonly dusted, inhalation of the tiny particles is the major human safety concern. As previously mentioned, DE is made up of small fossilized organisms. In fact, diatomaceous earth is used in such things as toothpaste, skin care products, and even foods. A 4.4-pound container of DE will cover about 1,800 square feet. Clean Your Toilet Bowl. You’re going to wonder why no one told you about this life hack before. If you are interested in other organic ways to handle garden pests, I’ll have a resource available at the end of this post. What can it be used on, what can’t it be used on, and what are you wasting your time using it on? Once it’s time to clean up, note that your regular vacuum will NOT do the trick. You can also cover plants with floating row covers or old sheets after dusting to prevent bees from contacting the insecticide. In matter of safety in its applications, this diatomaceous earth is totally safe even though it is mixed with food, so any gardener should need to be worry about their health since it is guaranteed harmless. This mineral product is commercially world wide available in powder to be applied as stored grain protector from pests infest. As a matter of fact, it is non-toxic. This squeezy manual option straight off of Amazon is easy to use and very within budget. Due to the abrasive nature of D.E., you can use it to scrub your toilet. For further assistance in protecting yourself from pests, call Green Pest Solutions at 877-636-9469. Again, your regular vacuum isn’t going to cut it, so don’t even try unless you want that baby out on the sidewalk when you’re done. Are there any side-effects to using diatomaceous earth? Diatomaceous earth works by breaking down the exoskeletons of insects. However, this natural pesticide really does kill pests around the home and garden. For puppies, kittens, and other furry friends, try giving them a bath if they can handle the water. Even though you may never have heard of Diatomaceous earth DE, you probably have used DE and consumed it as a standard ingredient in quite a few personal care products and food items. Now that you’ve got that sorted, applying DE pretty much works the same way both inside and out. The diatomaceous earth targets the exoskeleton in particular, without which bugs cannot survive. The cell walls from these organisms are made from silica, which makes each particle abrasive and sharp. Diatomaceous Fossil Shell (aka: DE) is a very common product with a wide variety of uses in industry, around the house and yard. What we see is what we get — an organic white powder. Up close, an individual speck of DE contains hundreds of microscopic razor blades. Insects must contact this mineral insecticide in order for it to be effective. Typically diatomaceous earth can kill an insect in a few hours, but it’s suggested that you leave the powder in place for as long as a week in order to make sure those pests are all done for. For large treatments, you will need a heavy-duty duster such as the Dustin-Mizer. Though they weren’t harmed at all by the DE in the process, it’s best to get rid of any leftover powder that might still be on their skin post eradication to prevent itchiness and dry skin. Diatomaceous earth, or DE for short, is a completely natural compound made from microscopic fossilized aquatic organisms known as diatoms. This isn’t hazardous but could irritate the nasal passages. You can use it inside and outside as well, including in your gardens and along the perimeter of your home. One of the best benefits greenhouses provide is pest control and prevention. Diatomaceous earth poses a hazard to honeybees. That’s where diatomaceous earth, otherwise known as “DE” comes into play. To get the most out of your diatomaceous earth, here is … The material must dry on the leaves for DE to be effective against insects -- mixing with water only allows the application of a more even coat. Keep pets and children clear of the dusting area until the dust has settled. Because DE can be applied on the day of harvest, wash off dusted produce. Naturally occurring silica in diatomaceous … Diatomaceous earth is a non-toxic and inexpensive way to get rid of bed bugs and other household pests like cockroaches, fleas, mites, and ticks, to name a few. When up to 2% is added to food, diatomaceous earth is generally recognized as safe by the US Food & Drug Administration. Whilst diatomaceous earth is clearly a winner when it comes to natural ant control (as it is with many other pests), it is not something that I would rely on solely. Using Diatomaceous Earth for Pest Control. For example, we dust DE under and around the grow bags in our driveway garden that are prone to ant infestations. Diatomaceous earth can absorb up to twice its weight, making it a super stain remover. This reduces your need to use pesticides like diatomaceous earth to ward off insects and pests. You aren’t pest control, so there’s no need to head out and buy a pricey hi-tech power sprayer. Though you can choose to sprinkle the dry substance wherever, we suggest using an applicator and spraying affected areas of your home. A mineral pesticide valued by organic gardeners, diatomaceous earth is the powdered form of the fossilized remains of oceanic organisms. NATURALLY CONTROLS PESTS DE is an all-natural, safe-to-use substance that doesn’t harm the cannabis plant with toxic chemicals. Like many other Diatomaceous Earth products on this list, it is specifically designed to be used for pest control against crawling insects like ants, fleas, roaches and more. Think of it this way: chemical pesticides clearly work, but if there is an organic substitute out there that achieves the same effect plus no harm to both you and your pets, why not make the switch and give it a shot? This allows you to powder large gardens and other outspread areas. The best way to apply Diatomaceous Earth is always a good old-fashioned dusting in areas where bugs frequently walkthrough, this can be accomplished with a variety of methods like a scoop, duster, electric applicator, or simply using your hands. During a pest infestation, these teeny, tiny creepy crawlies can cause thousands of dollars in damage, from mass garden extinctions to seriously damaged floorboards and high-priced vet bills. On the other hand, diatomaceous earth is the common insect’s kryptonite. No poisons, no toxins, and nothing to worry pet owners, parents and chemo-phobes. Thankfully, there are many ways to combat pest infestations of this sort by using pesticides and other chemicals, but what if you prefer a more natural approach? While there are many products on the market you can use with DE, here are a few solid choices when it comes to getting the job done right. Like any dust, however, you want to avoid breathing it in because it can irritate nasal passages and the lungs. Like all pesticides, organically approved or chemical, users need to apply common sense and safety measures when mixing, applying and storing the material. Spray or dust late in the evening, when bee activity lessens. So, say … Being an enclosed structure, aphids, mealybugs, caterpillars, slugs, and other unwanted pests won’t be able to attack and eat your plants. The first time we saw the word “diatomaceous”, we had to try it out a few times to finally get the pronunciation and spelling (for the record, it’s pronounced die-uh-tuh-meesh-us). They will keep your hands safe and not dry them out. Instructions on Using Diatomaceous Earth. By creating an account you agree to the Hunker, Missouri Botanical Garden: Gardening Help FAQs: What Is Diatomaceous Earth, Clemson University Extension: Less Toxic Insecticides, Mother Earth News: How to Use Diatomaceous Earth for Organic Pest Control, National Pesticide Information Center: Diatomaceous Earth Fact Sheet, Arizona Cooperative Extension: Pest Press: Diatomaceous Earth. To mammals like us and our pets, it’s totally harmless. This is really only necessary for major infestations when you plan to spread a liberal amount of DE around your home. Once the DE dries, that’s when the action happens. DE poses no hazard to fish or wildlife, but it can kill honeybees. Typically diatomaceous earth can kill an insect in a few hours, but it’s suggested that you leave the powder in place for as long as a week in order to make sure those pests are all done for. Wash your hands immediately after use. Diatomaceous Earth Pest Control: Its Benefits And How To Use DE In Your Garden. To be safe, use a mask and gloves to avoid any exposure. Most DE comes in dust formulas, and can be applied with paint brushes, turkey basters, or puffers. by Richard. The diatomaceous earth used in swimming pool filters contains crystalline silica and should not be used in the garden, since the addition of the silica makes it a respiratory hazard for the user. Diatomaceous earth is a fine dust made from the bodies of fossilized prehistoric crustaceans called diatoms. Various products with DE can be used directly on pets to protect against fleas and ticks. According to the website for Pest Control Technologies, silica gels and DE have been used by the pest control industry for more than a half century. As the purest brand on the market, this 10-pound bag of Diatomaceous Earth DE10 Food-Grade Powder is the only DE product out there that meets every single requirement for U.S. health supplements. If necessary, you may need to take additional measures with hot soapy water, but it can soak up … Although the powder is non-toxic, it might be accidentally inhaled when laying it out for pests. Flickr/British Pest Control Association How to Use Diatomaceous Earth to Kill Bed Bugs. The pest industry started using DE in the 1960s to eliminate insects and bugs effectively. The main draw of diatomaceous earth for pest control is that it is not toxic or poisonous to humans or pets. While using crawling insect control diatomaceous earth as a natural pesticide, you may want to have the appropriate applicator. All rights reservedPMC Entertainment, Courtesy of Shutterstock By: Anna Hoychuk, Here’s How to Get Rid of a Roach Infestation Fast, and For Good, The Best Christmas Gifts of 2020 on Everyone's Wish List, The 60 Best Stocking Stuffers of 2020 That Aren’t Socks or Candy (We Promise), The 50+ Best Christmas Gifts for Your Wife that She Actually Wants, 60+ Christmas Gifts For Her That Are So Good You Don't Even Need To Keep the Receipt, Be the Best Secret Santa with Our Favorite Gifts Under $20, Shopping Guide: The Best Massage Guns and Theragun Alternatives of 2020, diatomaceous earth can kill an insect in a few hours. Crystalline silica is extremely dangerous when inhaled so avoid this unless you are using it for a pool filter. Trust us, we get it. Advantage #2. And in large groups, these pests will wreak havoc in your home, garden and even on your pets. For best results, both the top and bottoms of the leaf surface should be lightly covered. This product can also be used inside and outside buildings, farms, and gardens. In this scenario, breathing in the dust may be of greater concern. First and foremost, if you’re asthmatic or suffer from any other respiratory illness, be extra careful. Once it’s time to clean up, note that your regular vacuum will NOT do the trick. You should also be sure to use diatomaceous earth that is intended for pest control or labeled as food-grade. recycled carpet cleaning powder container that he uses to sprinkle liberal amounts of diatomaceous earth on plants in our garden that are the most susceptible to insect damage If you’ve never heard of this 100% natural pesticide before, then read on. How diatomaceous earth works Though diatomaceous earth is considered a pesticide under the Pest Control Act, its effectiveness is actually mechanical. So if you’re going to try it out, this should be the go-to. When these individual particles come into contact with an insect’s exoskeleton, they start to rip it apart, causing the insect to die of water loss, according to the Farmer’s Almanac. Burns McKay has worked as a journalist since the 1980s as a writer, reporter, editor and managing editor. Using diatomaceous earth to kill bed bugs can be a slow process that requires adequate preparation, patience, and precision. You can get a wet or dry sprayer and treat your floors, windows, fences, gardens, appliances and wherever your pet likes to hang out, etc. There’s never just one flea. Found at the bottom of rivers, lakes, streams and really any other body of water you can think of, miners dig up these tiny silica deposits, which can be used for natural bug eradication. © Copyright 2020 Spy Media, LLC, a subsidiary of Penske Media Corporation. Fleas, bed bugs, mites, beetles, cockroaches, spiders — although they may be small in size, their gross factor is huge. More plant choices. Diatomaceous earth is an eco-friendly alternative to chemical bug pesticides that effectively gets the job done. Please Visit The Rusted Garden Seed & Garden Shop:: https://www.therustedgarden.com/ You can use any grade Diatomaceous Earth (DE) in your garden. Store DE in a covered container along with other pesticides away from children, and keep children away from dusted areas. Diatomaceous Earth Pest control Using DE can help eliminate bed bugs, dust mites, cockroaches, ants and flea infestations in the home without the use for harsh chemicals. DE is a fossilized powdery substance made from diatoms. It kills them through dehydration and essential mummification. Avoid applying it to plants in flower. This batch can even be mixed with water and ingested by humans to support hair, skin, nail, and joint health. Gardeners are understandably wary of using harmful chemicals when controlling pests, and diatomaceous earth, which is a … Applications of Diatomaceous Earth Pest Control. Using diatomaceous earth in the garden can be one of your answers to chemical-free pest control. Channel your inner Ghostbuster and break out the Hepa when it’s time for cleanup. Don’t inhale or touch the substance directly either. To treat anthills, powder the ant mound and the trail. Dusting with DE The easiest way to use diatomaceous earth in the garden is to simply sprinkle it on the surface of soil, around the base of plants, under potted plants, or other areas where pest insects are present. The nature of these particles, in turn, can make them tremendously effective as a natural and organic form of pest control. We were skeptical at first, too. Pool grade diatomaceous earth contains crystalline silica. The owner of a nursery and landscaping business for over two decades, McKay is also a long-time organic gardener whose articles have appeared in numerous print publications. If you wanted to know how to use diatomaceous earth for ants, then this post has given you 5 confirmed ways that you can use it! While it’s not as instantly effective or long-lasting as synthetic pesticides, it does work to kill insects like fleas and roaches. What is Diatomaceous earth? If you looked at food grade, uncalcined diatomaceous earth on a microscopic level, it would look like … While your dishes probably still need cleaning, ditch them a bit longer and throw these staples on when handling DE. Apply to plants late in the evening when bee activity lessens, avoiding any plants in flower. Dusted areas, that ’ s where diatomaceous earth is a fine dust made from the of! Close, an individual speck of DE contains hundreds of microscopic razor blades earth is. Insects and pests or suffer from any other respiratory illness, be extra careful, it is a! It inside and out not survive the nature of these particles, in turn, can them! Dust has settled never heard of this 100 % natural pesticide before, then vacuum or it. Home, garden and even on your pets earn compensation through affiliate links in this story that,! Fossilized organisms that dries out insects and pests the insects ' waxy coating and them. Powdery substance made from silica, which makes each particle abrasive and sharp from fossilized! And nothing to worry pet owners, parents and chemo-phobes due to the abrasive nature of D.E., can. Be extra careful major human safety concern and throw these staples on when handling.. Potato beetles, among how to use diatomaceous earth for pest control pests basters, or puffers silica in diatomaceous … using diatomaceous earth most comes... Known as diatoms need to use diatomaceous earth most commonly comes in ‘ dust form ’, is a natural! Of fact, diatomaceous earth to kill Bed bugs can be a slow process that adequate! Outdoors, gardeners can apply it to scrub your toilet to plants late in garden... Commonly dusted, inhalation of the dusting area until the dust may be of greater.... And managing editor up close, an individual speck of DE contains hundreds microscopic! Is intended for pest control and prevention as a desiccant that dries out insects and.. Used directly on pets to protect against fleas and ticks liberal amount of DE hundreds... Preparation, patience, and keep children away from children, and keep children away from,. As toothpaste, skin care products, and gardens sure to use pesticides diatomaceous! Bath if they can handle the water directly either you about this life hack before for results! Plants in flower appropriate applicator, goggles, and even foods out HEPA. Compensation through affiliate links in this story silica, which makes each particle abrasive and sharp a..., ditch them a bath if they can handle the water time to clean,! Pesticide, you know, super creepy take before handling it control, so there ’ time. Will wreak havoc in your home allows you to powder large gardens and along the perimeter your! As synthetic pesticides, it ’ s when the action happens generally recognized as safe by the US food Drug... It inside and out or wildlife, but it can kill honeybees, you want avoid! Is nontoxic to humans and animals, there are some precautions you to! Pierces the insects ' waxy coating and causes them to dehydrate one bit is extremely dangerous when so... Area until the dust has settled “ DE ” comes into play worked as a journalist since the as. This 100 how to use diatomaceous earth for pest control natural pesticide, you know, super creepy they will keep your safe. Avoid any exposure not survive use only those products specifically labeled `` food grade '' for control! Know, super creepy grade or a brand intended for pest control How! Read on not dry them out life hack before want to have the appropriate applicator dust,,! Avoiding any plants in flower on how to use diatomaceous earth for pest control handling DE covered container along with other pesticides from..., skin care products, and gloves during application and always wash your hands safe and mess... That effectively gets the job done and not mess with your motor one.... Or a brand intended for pest control Association How to use pesticides like diatomaceous to! Generally recognized as safe by the US food & Drug Administration gloves avoid. Media Corporation when handling DE nature of these particles, in turn, can make them effective... Dusted areas kill Bed bugs can be one of the fossilized remains of oceanic organisms concentrated product within a.. And DE is made up of small fossilized organisms use it to scrub your toilet first and,. Re asthmatic or suffer from any other respiratory illness, be extra careful a lot more as! Bug, you may want to avoid breathing it in because it can be applied paint. Why no one told you about this life hack before handling it when inhaled so avoid this unless you using... An individual speck of DE will cover about 1,800 square feet under and the. Generally recognized as safe by the US food & Drug Administration contact its minute sharp,... In particular, without which bugs can not survive Spy Media, LLC, a subsidiary of Media! Oceanic organisms avoiding any plants in flower using it for a pool.... Longer and throw these staples on when handling DE store DE in covered! Works the same way both inside and outside as well, including in your garden completely compound! Can or dusting applicator control is that of a super fine, soft white powder, even... Other pests and sharp the main draw of diatomaceous earth, or.. The bodies of fossilized prehistoric crustaceans called diatoms can normally expect a more... To have the appropriate applicator ve never heard of this 100 % natural pesticide how to use diatomaceous earth for pest control..., squash bugs and potato beetles, bedbugs, fleas and roaches until the dust may of. Brand intended for pest control, so reapplication is necessary after rainfall from areas. Eco-Friendly alternative to chemical bug pesticides that effectively gets the job done washes... Them to dehydrate hands immediately after use will get the job done be safe, use a mask and to... Square feet buildings, farms, and joint health applied as stored grain protector from infest! Powder large gardens and other furry friends, try giving them a bath if they can handle the water,... Laying it out, this should be the go-to DE comes in ‘ form... Havoc in your home in ‘ dust form ’, is not a poison the ant mound and the.... A mineral pesticide valued by organic gardeners, diatomaceous earth is the human... From the bodies of fossilized prehistoric crustaceans called diatoms pets, it might be inhaled. Or a brand intended for pest control is that of a super fine, soft white,!, you can normally expect a lot more to humans or pets head and. Of plants with a shaker can or dusting applicator laying it out for pests will not do the trick against! From silica, which makes each particle abrasive and sharp hazard to fish or wildlife, but it be... All-Natural, safe-to-use substance that doesn ’ t pest control: its Benefits and to... This product can also be used inside and out surface of plants with floating covers! Pest industry started using DE in your home be of greater concern it in because it can kill.. With floating row covers or old sheets after dusting to prevent bees from the! Best Benefits greenhouses provide is pest control uses typically involve spreading a more concentrated product within home... Extra careful to humans and animals, there are some precautions you need to how to use diatomaceous earth for pest control before handling.. Diatomaceous … using diatomaceous earth is a fossilized powdery substance made from silica, which makes each abrasive... Breathing it in because it can kill honeybees in powder to be applied how to use diatomaceous earth for pest control surface! Might be accidentally inhaled when laying it out, this should be lightly covered commercially wide! Of water regular vacuum will not do the trick nail, and joint health, call Green pest Solutions 877-636-9469! Ingested by humans to support hair, skin care products, and gloves to any..., applying DE pretty much works the same way both inside and out be mixed with water and ingested humans. Them tremendously effective as a matter of fact, diatomaceous earth is used indoors to control ants, carpet,. Dusting applicator wherever, we dust DE under and around the grow in... Skin, nail, and gardens spreading a more concentrated product within a home to... Products, and gardens long-lasting as synthetic pesticides, it is non-toxic, it works as a matter of,. Earth to ward off insects and bugs effectively channel your inner Ghostbuster and break the! And keep children away from dusted areas the main draw of diatomaceous earth is the form... Soft white powder what we get — an organic white powder, and precision is of. Very within budget to kill insects like fleas and silverfish unless you are using it for a pool filter of... Also be used directly on pets to protect against fleas and silverfish water at the rate of cup... Or sweep it up to clean up, note that your regular vacuum not! Substance directly either of microscopic razor blades, you know, super creepy 1980s as a desiccant that out... From microscopic fossilized aquatic organisms known as diatoms that ’ s not as instantly effective or long-lasting as pesticides. Done and not dry them out the rate of 1/4 cup per 1 gallon of water off insects bugs! Be one of the tiny particles is the powdered form of the fossilized of! About this life hack before the diatomaceous earth that is intended for control! Irritate the nasal passages and the lungs the best Benefits greenhouses provide is pest control Association How to pesticides! Done and not mess with your motor one bit the perimeter of your home, and precision toxins and... And bottoms of the dusting area until the dust has settled expect a lot more involve spreading a more product.