Saturday, July 7, 2012
Diatomaceous Earth - new favorite pest control product & more!
I was looking into pest control options since the ants & spiders have been awful this spring/summer. This product kept popping up in my searches! Diatomaceous Earth Food Grade 10 Lb is a non-toxic pest control product that is mined in the US. It's made from the fossilized remains of planktonic algae called diatoms, and has microscopic super-sharp edges. These tiny sharp edges cut into the bodies of pests that walk through them, including slugs, ants, fleas, bedbugs, mites, ticks, roaches, silverfish and more, causing them to dehydrate and die. It comes in 4 lb, 10 lb, 25 lb or larger bags, and is a powedery substance that is extremely light-weight. It looks like powdered clay.
There is no poison to spread, and it is not harmful to your pets or your family. You will want to wear a dust mask when you apply it as the dust can irritate your eyes, nose, lungs and mouth. It is a drying agent, so wash your hands after using it! It can be applied to plants in the garden, and the lawn for pest control, too. (don't apply to blooming flowers though - you don't want to kill those helpful bees!) Make sure you purchase the food grade DE, not the kind used in swimming pools.
Have fleas on your pet, or in your home? You can use it on your carpets and even rub it into your pet's coat to get rid of the fleas. I read that it is also an ingredient in many cat litters. For our ant & spider issues, I've sprinkled it around the walls and on window sills and it is working like a charm! The steady line of ants I usually see by the garage door has disappeared - yay! It does take a few days to work, so be patient. Reapply DE as needed after rain.
I wish I'd bought a duster like this Pest Pistol Mini Duster to use, but I'd seen a comment on a message board that said you could use a water bottle with holes punched near the top as a makeshift duster. Thinking I'd save some money, that is what I did. It works, but I'll be purchasing the one below as soon as I place my next amazon.com order - it looks alot easier! I also bought a pack of dust masks at the dollar store to use when I put it out.
It's also used as an anti-caking agent. I read that many people add DE (remember - use only food grade DE!) to their long term storage buckets of grain and other foods. Here's a site with more information on that! It's got other purported uses and benefits - just do a google search if you want to find out more. I'm thinking it will get a lot of use at our home just to keep the bugs away from my home and garden, and to add to my vacuum packed grains and flour! It's something I wanted to share with y'all because I think it's a fabulous alternative to expensive poisons for your household - I'm all over the natural, non-toxic alternative!
Let me know if you've heard of DE before, or used it, and what you think of it - your comments are always very appreciated!
(There are two links to the products I've gotten (or will be getting, in the case of the duster!) from Amazon included above. Google affiliate ads may show up in posts too!)