Where there are gardens, there are insects. It is a common issue that many gardeners face, especially during the growing season like spring. We are talking about the insects that will damage the plants instead of the useful ones like bees and butterflies. So below is a list of the best insecticides for your vegetable garden along with some useful information. Let’s take a look and see what they are, and hopefully, you will learn a thing or two about vegetable insecticides.
#5. Best Concentrate Insecticide SprayProduct’s Specs:
- By: BioAdvanced
- Content: 32 ounce
- Usability: Fruits & Vegetables
With the formula that can kill over 70 common garden insects and pests, this is the vegetable insecticide to consider. You won’t have to worry about those little insects attacking your greens anymore when you have this insecticide with you. It can kill a number of insects like aphids, armyworms, cabbage flea beetles, cucumber beetles, thrips, whiteflies, and many more. You can use this vegetable insecticide in both fruit and vegetable gardens, and the effectiveness shows immediately which is awesome. The fast-acting formula allows this insecticide to instantly kill all the insects and pests by contact. On top of that, you can even use it for lawns which is a total plus.
Another thing that I like about this vegetable insecticide is that it is also very easy to use. Simply attach the spray nozzle to the bottle, and then you can spray it onto the plants right away. The application is to evenly cover the leaves so that they are protected from those insects. Not to mention that it stays rainproof for up to an hour, this is golden here. Plus with the fact that it is safe to use up to the day you harvest, it is the perfect insecticide for vegetable garden. From good price to quality, this insecticide has them all so don’t forget to check it out.
#4. Best Horticultural Oil Concentrate Insecticide / PesticideProduct’s Specs:
- By: Monterey
- Content: 32 oz
- Usability: Fruits & Vegetables (Dormant & Growing Season)
One of the main challenges to the growth of plants and trees is the attack from outdoor insects and pests. This is why you need a high-quality insecticide that also functions as a pesticide for vegetable garden like this one. What it does is protect your plants and even trees from all insects out there. We are talking about the bothersome ones like aphids, mealybugs, scales, spider mites, thrips, and more. On top of killing them, this insecticide also controls the eggs of those insects from hatching and feeding on your plants. You can use it with a wide range of fruit trees and vegetables, and its effectiveness and quality are amazing.
More than that, this pesticide for vegetable garden product is ideal to use during both dormant and growing seasons. It is extremely safe, and it does not affect the growth and other stages of the plants and trees at all. Simply put, you can use it all year round. In fact, this insecticide is OMRI listed and approved to be safe for organic gardening which is very reliable to use. As for the application, just mix it with water and use a pump up or trigger spray to apply it. This product is so easy and effective to use, and you won’t have to worry about insects and pests again.
#3. Best Caterpillar & Worm Killer SprayProduct’s Specs:
- By: Bonide
- Content: 32 oz
- Usability: Fruits, Shade Trees, Ornamentals, Vegetables
Worry no more about the problems with caterpillars and worms that often damage your plants. The awesome thing about this insecticide is that it can get rid of many garden insects and pests for you. You can use it on a number of fruits and vegetables as well as ornamental and shade trees. The best part is that it does not harm beneficial insects like honeybees or ladybugs at all. Simply put, this insecticide and pesticide for vegetable garden can protect everything in your garden really well. Within just a few days after use, you can notice that insects and pests will no longer feed on your plants.
Besides caterpillars and worms, this insecticide also kills other common insects like bagworms, cabbage loopers, gypsy moths, hornworms, and more. However, it is safe to use around pets and people despite its ability to get rid of the garden pests. This insecticide is very easy to apply, and its fast-acting effects will give you the fast results that you want. No matter how heavily infested the garden can be, this insecticide will clear those pests out for you. The effectiveness remains the same even if the insects are large, and that is how great this pesticide is. As one of the best insecticides for vegetable gardens, you will not regret choosing this option.
#2. Best Multipurpose Garden Insect KillerProduct’s Specs:
- By: Garden Safe
- Content: 24 oz
- Usability: Flowers, Houseplants, Shrubs, Trees, Vegetables
Thanks to the botanical purposes, this is not only an insecticide for vegetable gardens but also for flower gardens. You can use it to kill insects and pests from your flowers, houseplants, ornamentals, shrubs, succulents, trees, and vegetables. All those bothersome bugs will be killed on contact, and they don’t damage your plants in the garden again. The best part is that you can use this insecticide for both your indoor and outdoor gardens. Its ability to kill and protect is the same, and it is very easy to use. Simply spray it on the upper and lower leaf surfaces, and you are good to go.
And as you can see, this insecticide comes in with a nozzle spray design that you can use right away. No mixing is needed, simply spray it out of the bottle which is so convenient and simple. Make sure to use this insecticide weekly or as much as you need, up to 10 times per season. Then you won’t have to worry about insects or pests ever again. Not different from other best insecticides for vegetable garden on the list, you can also use it up to harvest days. For a price like this, you should not overlook an insecticide with such amazing quality.
#1. Best Organic Pest Control Oil SprayProduct’s Specs:
- By: Natria
- Content: 24 oz
- Usability: Flowers, Fruits, Vegetables
Neem oil is among the best ingredients that effectively kill and repel pesky insects, and this spray has just that. This organic neem oil pesticide for vegetable garden is a multi-use insect that you can use on many things. From indoor to outdoor gardens, it works great in them all. You can spray it on flowers, fruits, ornamental shrubs, plants, and vegetables, and you can apply it all year round. And you expect, it also kills the insects and pests very fast, upon contact to be exact. You won’t have to worry about aphids, beetles caterpillars, fruit flies, spider mites, and other insects anymore.
The best part about this insecticide is that it does not only solve bug problems but also plant disease protection. It protects your plants against common plant diseases like black spot, botrytis, downy mildew, powdery mildew, scab, and many more. Being able to help control plant disease is a huge bonus because it simply adds additional care to your plants. More than that, this spray is unscented so you won’t have to deal with an unpleasant smell while using it at all. Since it is one of the best insecticides for vegetable garden, this is clearly the option that you should take into consideration.
Vegetable Insecticide Types
Before buying an insecticide for your vegetable garden, you want to know how many types there are first. This is to ensure that you will choose the right type for the garden. Generally, there are 3 major types of insecticides which are: Contact, Ingested, and Systemic.
The first type kills insects once it directly hits them while the second will kill the pests once they eat the substance. Systemic is the type that you introduce to the soil, and the plant roots will absorb it. The insecticide then moves to external areas like branches, fruits, leaves, and twigs, and it will poison any insects that chew the plants. You will find 3 other types of vegetable insecticide below, let’s see which one is the best type for you.
With granular insecticides, they are the insecticides that are attached to a porous organic material like corn cob or ground up clay. When the granules get wet, they release a little bit of insecticide to the ground. This provides a long-lasting effect, especially outdoors because it still works even when it rains. At the same time, this type of insecticide is easy to use since you don’t have to mix it at all. It is ideal for outdoor gardens and lawns, and it is also a very inexpensive way for a large area.
You will come across so many oil spray insecticides these days, and their quality is very good and reliable. The best thing about liquid sprays is that they pose very little to no risk to you and your plants. Meanwhile, they are able to eliminate insects and pests from the gardens in no time. This type of insecticide is natural and organic, and you can use most of them up to harvest days. At the same time, they are also very easy to use so even beginners won’t find it difficult.
Diatomaceous Earth (DE) is among the best powder insecticides that you can use in your garden. It helps to remove and prevent pests from the garden, keeping your plants safe from those insects. All you need to do is dust it into the leaves and stems of your flowers, vegetables, and other plants. Every exoskeleton bug will die upon contact with DE, and it works fast too. The powder penetrates their exoskeleton, making it dry out which will kill the insects in the end.
In fact, Diatomaceous Earth is the most effective way to get rid of aphids, beetles, spiders, squash bugs, and even slugs and snails. When you get one, make sure to go for the options that are food-grade or natural so that they are safe. The natural ones won’t harm kids and pets, but you still should wear protective items when applying the powder.
Things To Consider When Buying An Insecticide For Vegetable Garden
There are several factors that you have to have in mind before buying a vegetable insecticide to use. All of these factors do not only define the quality but also the effects that an insecticide has. Once you know what to look for, choosing the best insecticide for your vegetable garden will be a piece of cake.
The first thing to know is that you cannot just choose any insecticides or pesticides that you see. Even if the quality is good, you have to check the compatibility first. Make sure that the insecticide that you want to buy can kill the insects and pests in your gardens. Let’s say your vegetable garden is under an aphid attack, you cannot eliminate the infestation with insecticides that kill ants. Go for the ones that concentrate on the insects that harm your garden the most, and the effects will show fast.
Inorganic vs Organic
If you ask gardeners out there, they will definitely recommend organic insecticides over the inorganic ones. It is true that chemical aka inorganic insecticides can do the job fast, but it also affects the plants. Now let’s dive a little deeper into the inorganic and organic insecticides below.
A majority of inorganic insecticides contains chemical, their effectiveness is faster but they also come with many downsides. Chemical insecticides are poisonous to insects, and they can control or prevent large infestations before things are too late. They come in various forms, mainly killing the insects via eating or touching. Although the effects are different on humans and pets, some chemical insecticides can still cause burning or itching sensations.
The precaution that you should know is that inorganic insecticides are harmful and toxic upon ingestion or inhaling. This is why you should always wear protective clothing and items like long sleeves, eye goggles, and gloves. Doing so will prevent you from being directly exposed to the chemical substances that can result in discomfort feeling.
With organic insecticides, you can trust that it is effective and safe for your gardens. Along with that, there are also many ways that you can choose to get rid of insects and pests. These methods are healthy and safe, and they do not affect good bugs and your pets at all. The special thing about organic insecticides is that it is made from natural ingredients, meaning it is not harmful. What they do are repel, kill, and prevent the pests from infesting your garden.
The quality alone is very broad when it comes to insecticides, it covers many factors. You want them to have the best quality possible so that you can protect your garden from insects and pests. You know that it is reliable when the vegetable insecticides that you choose has as many of the features below as possible.
Easy To Apply
A good insecticide shouldn’t be too complicated to apply, things should be very convenient. Go for the options that do not require a lot of mixing, or with too many instructions. The ready-to-use insecticides are the easiest to use, and that should be something that you should look for.
High-quality insecticides should not take ages to finally work. The longest it takes should be from 3 to 5 days if not immediately. Most insecticides these days come with fast-acting formulas so that they can kill insects instantly. And that is the type of insecticide that want to use.
This part here refers to the number of insect types that the insecticides can cover. Its killing ability should be strong enough to kill as many common garden insects as possible. So make sure to read the descriptions of the insecticides and see how many insects they can eliminate and repel. This part is important so don’t overlook it.
Another issue that many people who use insecticides outdoors is that the rain washes off the substance from the plants. Simply put, the insecticides are no longer effective after the rain. The good thing is that there are insecticides out there that are rainproof for a certain amount of time. Some insecticides remain on the plants for up to an hour, and that is a good feature to look for.
The thing is that you cannot always trust the rainproof function of insecticide. Just to be safe, make sure to reapply the insecticide after the rain so that the protection remains there. At the same time, it is also good to reapply it every week or every two weeks to keep the insects away.
You wouldn’t want to use insecticides to get rid of bugs just to see some unpleasant residues on your plants. No matter how good or healthy the plants are, white residues on their surfaces are a big turn off. It does not look good, and it makes the garden look unattractive as well. On top of that, a high-quality insecticide should not leave residues after use. The key is to read the description of the product to make sure that it does not leave any residue.
Killing and repelling insects are good, but these are not enough. You also want the insecticides or pesticides to be able to protect your plants from those bugs. To cut things short, it keeps the insects away after killing them so that there won’t be any infestation in the future. The good thing is that most insecticides these days provide that kind of quality. Just to make sure, don’t forget to look for this feature so that your gardens will be protected long-term.
Insecticides Benefits & Downsides
Everything has both its bad and good sides, and you know so well that insecticides have those too. It is important to understand the advantages and disadvantages of insecticides so that you can avoid harmful results. Along with that, knowing those also allows you to use insecticides in the correct way which is a great bonus. So let’s see the good and bad things about insecticides below.
- Exactly what gardeners expect, insecticides help to eliminate pests so that the plants can grow healthily. Without the presence of harmful insects, everything in the garden will have the chance to grow which results in more yield.
- Some insecticides these days even have the ability to control diseases on flowers, plants, and vegetables. This is a great thing because they provide two benefits in one: killing insects and preventing common plant diseases.
- One insecticide these days can kill and prevent more than 20 common garden insects. Some insecticides are effective enough to kill insects in all stages, including eggs which is extremely useful. Along with that, their formulas and ingredients are also safe for humans and pets. All you need is one bottle of insecticide that you can spray weekly on your home gardens. And you won’t have to worry about attacks or infestations from insects and pests anymore.
- Without proper protection, insecticides / pesticides can cause health issues and risks to humans. Those include dizziness, diarrhea, rashes, stinging eyes, and more. This is why you should always wear protective clothing like gloves, long sleeves, and masks when using insecticides or pesticides.
- Insecticides can kill more than the insects that you want to get rid of, some can kill beneficial insects. They may affect important bugs like earthworms, pollinators, and other insects that are useful for the gardens. At the same time, some insecticides are also harmful to humans or pets as well.
- There are insects that are repeatedly exposed to insecticides, and they build up their resistance. Simply put, insecticides will have little to no effect on those insects. Because they produce a new generation every few weeks, the resistance builds up very quickly and rapidly.
The solution to the drawbacks is by choosing non-persistent insecticides that target certain organisms that harm the gardens. At the same time, this type of insecticide also breaks down quickly in the environment. That way, the chance of insects building up their resistance to the substance is also low. Make sure to spray the insecticide on areas where the infestation is so that it won’t affect other parts.
Another thing to remember is not to spray when rain is forecast or on windy days. It is better to spray your insecticides in the morning because that will minimize the impact on pollinators like bees.
Homemade & Natural Insecticides You Can Try
You can always make your insecticides if you don’t have to go buy one, and it is quite easy too. With some of the ingredients that you have at home, getting a bottle of natural insecticide is not difficult. Below are some homemade insecticides that you can try, let’s see which one you are going to make.
Repels: Aphids, Beetles, Mites, Whiteflies
This is the ingredient that everyone has at home, and you can turn it into an insecticide too. Make sure to use castile soap or mild dish soap, mix a teaspoon of it with a quart of water. Stir it well before pouring it into a spray bottle. Use the solution to spray on leaves where you see insects, make sure to cover both the top and bottom of the leaves. The soap will coat their bodies so the bugs cannot fly away or move, and they’ll eventually die.
Repeat spraying every four to seven days, and after heavy rain. Never apply this mixture during the heat of the day or when your plants are under direct sunlight.
Repels: Ants, Aphids, Beetles, Caterpillars, Slugs, Whiteflies
Not everyone enjoys the strong smell of garlic, and all the bugs and pests have the same opinion. This is why garlic is among the best home remedies that you can use as a vegetable insecticide. Crush six cloves of garlic or more, and mix it with 5 cups of water. Add a few drops of dish soap to make it sticky, and stir it well before straining it to remove large pieces. Store it tightly in a jar for a week, and transfer it into a spray bottle when you are ready to use.
Spray the mixture to the top and bottom parts of the leaves, and reapply it every week or after rain. The strong smell of garlic will keep all the bugs and insects away from your plants. However, garlic can affect certain types of plants so make sure to check and see if it is okay to use on yours.
Repels: Ants, Flies, Slugs, Snails
Vinegar is a natural home remedy that you can use to get rid of a number of pests. As a matter of fact, this insecticide is going to both repel and kill insects in your garden. All you need to do is mix one part of apple cider or white vinegar to three parts water to create your insecticide. You may add a few drops of dish soap so that the solution stays longer on the plants. Pour it into a spray bottle and apply it to plant bases.
You should only apply it early in the morning or at sundown, and make sure to not apply too much. Also, it is not an ideal option for delicate flowers or plants. Vinegar itself is quite strong, so it might kill your plants if you apply it too often.
FAQs on Insecticides:
Are insecticide and pesticide the same?
No, they are not. An insecticide is a product that people use to specifically target and kill insects. It controls insects by killing them or preventing them from engaging in destructive behaviors that harm your plants. Usually, gardeners use insecticides to get rid of pests that damage their plants in indoor and outdoor gardens. An insecticide often comes in a form of spray which is easy and fast to use right out of the box.
Meanwhile, a pesticide is a chemical that people use to kill bacteria, fungus, insects, plant diseases, and more. You can also use it both indoors and outdoors, but there are a few different types that you can choose. It could kill insects by ingestion or touch, and its effects can be instantly or prolonged depending on how you like it.
How to keep insects off plants without using insecticides / pesticides?
People often say that keeping your garden clean from decomposing matter will keep insects away. This is true, but there are still pesky bugs that attack plants that are in clean gardens. When that happens, you should consider planting companion plants around your flowers or vegetables.
There are certain plants that double as natural insect repellents that you can grow in your gardens. Some of the best ones are allium, alyssum, chrysanthemum, garlic, marigold, onion, and petunia. The flowers do not only look good but also work great in keeping annoying bugs away. Not to mention that these plants are easy to care for, they are worth having in your garden.
How does insecticide protect crops?
Insecticides come with a combination of certain ingredients that can kill and prevent insects from coming back. Some of the formulas have a long-lasting effect that keeps the bugs and pests away from your plants. This is why you should coat the leaves of the plants when you spray insecticide on them. Due to the substances that they don’t like, those insects will not touch the plants again.
How long does insecticide take to work?
The awesome thing about modern insecticides today is that they work fast. You can see the changes and improvements in your plant conditions within the first one or two days. With the right insecticides, the pests will be killed immediately and the infestation will subside. Even better, some insecticides have a long-lasting effect that last for days or even weeks.
It is extremely annoying to have insects in the garden that feed on and destroy the plants. This is why it is important to take action immediately when you spot them in your garden. With the best vegetable insecticides, you will be able to eliminate those insects in less than a week. Along with that, it is also crucial to prepare for such situations when you have a garden. I hope that now you know what to do if there are insects attacking your plants, there are many ways.