Plant Care

How to Remove Pests from your Indoor Herb Garden

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You’re not the only one who enjoys eating herbs and vegetables – Aphids, spider mites and white flies are all pests that can take residence on your indoor herbs. When herbs are outdoors, ironically the essential oils and strong flavors we love in our herbs typically keeps bugs to a minimum – but when you have pests indoors and they have less options they’re far less picky.

Since your end goal is to eat your delicious herbs, you need to rid yourself of the pests using a non-toxic, natural solution. Read on to learn the best way to remove pests from your herbs and keep them safe to eat.

How to identify the pests on your herbs

  • Spider Mites: Resemble small moving dots on your leaves. May also leave visible webs when present in large numbers.
  • Aphids:  Resemble a small bump circled by a white, waxy ring, and often live on the underside of leaves.
  • White flies: Small, waxy white bugs that live on the underside of leaves.

Water Spray

Your first line of pest control defense is the simplest – simply spray it with a strong stream of water. In fact, this is the preferred method of removing white flies as they can resist the garlic and soap spray methods. Your shower or a hose spray nozzle work well for this purpose. You may need to repeat one or two times to fully remove the bugs.

Garlic Spray

Good for repelling pests and vampires. 

Puree approximately 15 cloves of garlic and mix into 1 litre of water. Strain through a cheesecloth and then place in a spray bottle. Spray this on your plants for a few days and they should be bug free. 

Liquid Soap Spray

Soap keeps us germ free, and helps keep your plants pest free. No need to worry about altering the taste of your herbs – Once you’ve finished treating your plants, it’s easy to wash off any soapy residue along with all the dead bugs.

Thoroughly wash the leaves and stems with my soapy water solution (1 tsp of Dr. Bronner Mild Liquid Baby Soap per 1 liter of water) or use a store-bought insecticidal soap (always follow the directs on the bottle), and give the plant a good rinse. Keep in mind that soap can damage the plant, so it’s best to test it on a few leaves before spraying the entire plant