The monsoon season brings with it a variety of diseases, many of which are spread because of small but deadly insects. This guide will help you keep insects away from your home.
India, especially during the monsoon season, sees many cases of people falling sick from a variety of insect-related diseases like dengue, malaria, chikangunya and more. Ants and cockroaches are also unsanitary, especially when you’ve got young children or elders at home. But how do you get rid of these pests while trying to commit to an organic, chemical-free lifestyle?
Here is I Say Organic’s Insect Repellent guide – an easy way for you to shoo those winged and multi-legged visitors out, naturally and gently.
Ants in your pants?
Image Source: Pixabay
God, we hope not! Ants are amazing little insects, able to carry up to 10 times their body weight but we’d prefer that they carry themselves out of our homes.
Step 1 – The first step is to keep your surfaces and kitchen counters clean. Try a mix of vinegar and lemon or eucalyptus oil, which will leave surfaces sparkling, as well as ant-repelling.
Step 2 – Ants not deterred? Try lining entry points, undersides and corners with thin lines of citrus oil, lemon juice or even cinnamon.
Step 3 – Cucumber peels or slices are natural deterrents. Peel the cucumber, create a flower with the peel if you like, securing it with a toothpick. This also ensures that you eat cucumber regularly!
Step 4 – If you must keep certain foods outside, build a moat around them by setting them in a shallow pan of water.
Step 5 – Create your own ant bait. Mix 1 teaspoon of boric acid (a compound that naturally occurs in nature and is easily reproduced) and 6 tablespoons of sugar in two cups of water. Soak cotton balls in this mixture and place them in areas frequented by ants. Do be careful to ensure that children don’t eat these; they aren’t toxic but might cause mild irritation. The boric acid is carried back by ants to their nest and over a couple of weeks or so, they will stop coming back to your house.
Mosquitoes? Marigolds to the rescue!
Image Source: Pixabay
Painful, red, swollen bites? Not anymore. Mosquitoes are most rampant in the rainy season, when large tracts of exposed water lead to their breeding.
Step 1 – The most important thing is to clear gutters, window ledges and terraces of standing water, as regularly as possible.
Step 2 – Planting marigolds near windows and doors is a great idea, the flowers repel mosquitoes very well.
Step 3 – You can also use dabs of natural neem oil, and moisturise your skin as well, to great effect.
Step 4 – Essential oils like basil, lavender and peppermint are also great at repelling mosquitos. Whether you plant a sapling or spray yourself with a mix of water and essential oil, you’ll be bite-free.
Cockroaches might survive a nuclear war, but that’s no reason to harbour them now. Cleanliness is next to cockroach-freeness – soap and water are your primary defences against them. Dustbins should have close-fitting lids and ideally, waste should be disposed of as soon as possible.
Step 1 – Cucumbers work on cockroaches too – so get peeling.
Step 2 – Bay leaves and garlic pods also deter cockroaches. Get creative with little garlands or toothpicks pierced through bay leaves, pods and keep them in the corners.
Step 3 – Boric powder is a solution when your infestation is extreme. When consumed, it dehydrates roaches and thus kills them. Boric powder should be kept out of the reach of children, so place it only in high places.
Make flies and fleas, fly and flee
Image Source: Flickr
Flies and fleas are quite difficult to force out of the house. These little winged creatures are found around food or on pets, and are a bane. Your best resource? Plants like mint, basil and citrus. The essential oils will work as well, but are not as fuss-free.
Step 1 – Vacuum and clean carpets and curtains ever so often.
Step 2 – Bathe pets with mild soap and comb out as regularly as advisable.
Step 3 – Bay leaves, cloves and eucalyptus hung at doors or windows also repel flies.
Step 4 – Make sure that food or fruits aren’t left out for too long; use netted lids and baskets.
It’s silly but this reptilian-looking creature terrifies us as much as we terrify them (we’re guessing). And God help us all when that tail falls off! Here are a few fool-proof ways of dealing with them.
Step 1 – Empty egg shells are magic. Colour and paint them from the outside and hang them in corners, doors and windows and poof! Lizards gone.
Step 2 – Peacock feathers are also a great way, given that the peacock is a natural predator of the lizard. Plus, they’re gorgeous!
And at last, just one more I Say Organic tip:
Use a mix of vodka and essential oil while making sprays. Why alcohol, you may ask. Because it evaporates, leaving behind only the essential oil, and thus you’re left with a clean, effective bug spray.
Until next time. Enjoy the monsoon rains! 🙂
To explore a wide range of fresh organic produce and learn more about how and where it’s grown, log on to www.isayorganic.com or call 011-41087447