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One of the most common and at the same time very unspecific pests in ornamental and kitchen gardens are aphids. Therefore, it is only understandable that hobby gardeners are always on the lookout for effective ways to get rid of the annoying guests. Home remedies are ecological and cheap. But do the repeatedly propagated remedies baking powder and baking soda actually work against aphids?

baking powder and baking soda

Both of these named substances are perhaps known to you from another place - namely from the kitchen at home. In the past, soda was found in almost every household as a leavening agent, but it was often replaced by the baking powder that is well known and widespread today. However, a look at the ingredients reveals that baking powder used in households is primarily made of baking soda. Except for a few additives, it is one and the same substance.

NOTICE: Before using the baking powder against aphids, please take a look at the ingredients. In addition to the classic baking soda, there are other alternatives that also develop propellant gases, but are not suitable if you want to get rid of lice.

How does baking soda work?

When fighting lice, the same effect is used that makes the substances appear so beneficial as leavening agents. Because when reacting with moisture, i.e. water, the agent, chemically known as sodium bicarbonate, primarily reacts to form CO2 - carbon dioxide. Since lice breathe oxygen like humans, the mode of action of baking soda is obvious:

  • difficulty breathing
  • initiation of escape behavior
  • Later respiratory paralysis and death

In addition to its practical effectiveness against aphids, sodium bicarbonate offers other advantages that make it particularly advantageous as a home remedy for combating the pests:

  • Flashes off quickly and without leaving any residue
  • No adverse effects on host plants
  • Uncritical against many larger beneficial insects such as butterflies, ladybugs, bees etc.

Tips for use

To really get rid of aphids effectively, there are a few things to keep in mind when using baking soda or baking soda:

1. Concentration

In order for the CO2 to have an effect, there must be sufficient development. A well-filled tablespoon of powder to one liter of water is usually specified as an effective mixture.

2. The time

Once the solution is created, it should be applied to the lice quickly. Because the CO2 can only work if it is released directly to the animals. If it already occurs in the mixing container, it outgass and is useless.

3. Additions

According to various sources, the effect of the respiratory poison can be increased if further additives are added:

  • 1 teaspoon cooking oil for better adhesion to plant and animals
  • ALTERNATIVE: ¼ teaspoon grated curd soap for the same effect
  • 2 teaspoons of alcohol, e.g. spirit, for greater effectiveness against scale and mealybugs

NOTICE: In addition to being effective against aphids, baking soda can also help against other plant problems. With regular use of a slightly weaker mixture, powdery mildew and blackspot on rose plants can be effectively prevented or curbed.

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