By Stan V. Griep, Certified Consulting Rosarian, American Rose Society
Have you ever heard of diatomaceous earth or DE? Well if not, prepare to be amazed! The uses for diatomaceous earth in the garden are great. Diatomaceous earth is a truly amazing all natural product that can help you grow a beautiful and healthy garden.
What is Diatomaceous Earth?
Diatomaceous earth is made from fossilized water plants and is a natural occurring siliceous sedimentary mineral compound from the remains of algae-like plants called diatoms. The plants have been part of earth’s ecology system dating back to prehistoric times. The chalky deposits the diatoms left are called diatomite, the diatoms are mined and ground up to make a powder that has a look and feel much like talcum powder. Diatomaceous earth is also a mineral based pesticide.
What is Diatomaceous Earth Used for in the Garden?
The uses for diatomaceous earth are many, but in the garden, diatomaceous earth can be used as an insecticide. Diatomaceous earth works to get rid of insects such as mites, aphids and cockroaches.
To the insects, the diatomaceous earth is a lethal dust with microscopic sharp edges that cut through the insect’s protective covering, causing them to dry and die. It is effective if you dust with the diatomaceous earth or apply it in a wet spray form.
One of the benefits of diatomaceous earth for insect control, is that the insects it helps to control have no way to build up a resistance to the diatomaceous earth, like with many of the chemical control insecticides.
The diatomaceous earth will not harm the worms or any of the beneficial microorganisms in the soil.
How to Apply Diatomaceous Earth
Most places where you can purchase diatomaceous earth will have complete directions on the proper application of the product. As with any pesticide, be sure to read the label thoroughly and follow the directions. The directions will include how to properly apply the diatomaceous earth (DE) both in the garden and indoors for the control of many insects as well as forming a barrier of sorts against them.
For more information on DEsect for your garden, visit https://epminerals.com/products/desect.