Spiders! You either love 'em or hate 'em, but they are a fact of life and how you deal with them determines the health of your home and garden. The good news about spiders is that they rarely bite humans and are beneficial in keeping your home free of pests such as moths, roaches, mosquitos and flies.
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Getting rid of spiders on plants without killing the plant is a matter of finding a natural spider repellent. Essential oils are your primary spider foil. Essential oils won't kill spiders, but they will relocate, so your plants will live another day.
Wearing protective clothing is essential when dealing with spiders that invade your garden. Cover your face, arms and any skin that is exposed to ward off spiders that may be poisonous.
Vacuum, Then Spray the Plants
Bugs that make webs on plants can be removed by simply vacuuming them away. If you have a small vacuum dedicated to your outdoor garden or indoor plants, use it to sweep the surface of the leaves and grab the spiders. Once the vacuuming is completed, be sure to empty the canister and wipe it down. A good blast of air through the hose also rids the machine of any lingering spiders.
Outdoor plants can be sprayed with water after the vacuuming is complete. This dislodges remaining spiders and spider mites. Both indoor and outdoor plants can be washed down with insecticidal soap. You can make your own by combining 2 teaspoons of liquid dish soap with a gallon of water. Place the liquid in a sprayer and gently spray the leaves and stems.
Essential Oils Repel Spiders
Peppermint oil, cinnamon, citronella, clove and lavender are essential oils that help keep spiders at bay. Cinnamon sticks placed near where they gather or nest, peppermint oil dropped on a cotton ball, a jar of cloves, or some lavender oil all help repel the spiders without threatening nearby plants.
When spiders find a home on your plants and erect complicated webs, they can be eradicated in a way to safely protect your garden. Just be aware that the spiders feed on insects that may harm your plants, so consider your plant health and tolerance for spiders before trying to get rid of them. Gentle essential oils keep spiders out of your garden naturally.
Treat Plants With Spider Mites
Tiny spider mites thrive on the underside of plants' leaves. A heavily leafed plant is an attraction for spider mites. One way to get rid of the spider mites is to mix a cup of rubbing alcohol with a cup of water in a sprayer. Thoroughly douse the leaves, especially the undersides with the mixture.
Once you have sprayed the leaves on both sides, use a paper towel to wipe the leaves down. If the infestation of spider mites is mild, wet a cotton ball with the alcohol mixture and wipe the leaves. Whatever the method, repeat it one week later, as any remaining larvae may be producing more insects.
Grow Spider Repellent Plants
If you have a garden that attracts spiders, consider planting plants that repel spiders throughout the garden. Mint works especially well. Any plant in the mint family, including catnip, lavender, lemon balm, basil, rosemary and sage will work, as well as providing you with herbs for your kitchen.
Place the repellent plants in areas where webs are flourishing after cleaning the area and ridding it of existing spiders and webs. If you are bringing new plants into the garden or home, quarantine them for a week before introducing them into your décor or landscaping. Tobacco plants give off an odor that spiders are sensitive to. Make a spray out of leaves and water, or crush a few cigarettes, add water and spray your existing plants with the solution.