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10 Best Ways to Use Essential Oils in the Garden

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10 Best Ways to Use Essential Oils in the Garden

If you want to learn how to use essential oils in the garden, this article is for you.

Organic gardening can be challenging, especially when it comes to pest control. However, some essential oils can help keep insects and related pests away from plants naturally, among other benefits.

Here’s how to use essential oils for gardening—to help prevent the growth of fungus, keep bugs off plants, and more.

1. Repel Garden Pests

Garden pests are some of a gardener’s greatest enemies. However, you can use some essential oils for garden pest control [1].

Oils such as rosemary, peppermint, lemongrass, clove, lavender, cedarwood, thyme, sage, tea tree, and citronella repel certain plant pests.

To make a homemade essential oil pesticide, start by combining peppermint, tea tree, cedarwood, and thyme oils in a spray bottle. Using a dropper, 15 drops of each oil for every 4 ounces of water is good enough.

Shake well and use it to spray your plants. You can also try out other oil combinations to find the most effective recipe for your garden.

2. Fight Fungus

Some essential oils also fight fungus. Oils like orange and lemongrass are useful in controlling fungal infections [2].

Tea tree oil also has the dual action of killing and preventing fungal problems. Clove, cinnamon, thyme, peppermint, and oregano are also useful in this way.

To use essential oils on plants to fight fungus, mix about 20 drops with 8 ounces of water in a spray bottle.

Whichever one you choose, be careful to avoid the hot sun, which may react with the oil and burn the leaves. Spray your DIY essential oil fungicide on plants and soil early in the morning or in the evening.

Apply once a week.

3. Attract Pollinators

Some oils, like lavender, orange, and sage, will attract bees, butterflies, and other pollinators. Neroli, helichrysum, and aromatic oils like rosemary, basil, lemongrass, hyssop, and marjoram might also work.

Therefore, use any of these oils to make an essential oil plant spray to attract pollinators to your garden.

The recipe is 6 drops of essential oil mixed with 4 oz. of water sprayed onto flowers and buds. The floral scent will attract these useful insects.

4. Kill Weeds

Cinnamon oil and clove oil are both good at suppressing weeds. Peppermint oil is also helpful in this way.

To make a simple essential oil herbicide, combine a tablespoon of organic liquid soap with 15 to 20 drops of each of the three mentioned oils. Then add some white vinegar (about 6 cups) to the mixture.

Next, shake well and spray the weeds. Shake the solution intermittently to keep the oil well distributed.

5. Keep Rodents Away

Cotton balls soaked in peppermint oil fit this purpose. Place near squirrel nests, mouse holes, and other places where rodents hang out.

Peppermint oil is especially disliked by rodents. Thus, it is useful in repelling them but needs topping up as the smell wears off.

Additionally, you can also hang strips of rag soaked in peppermint oil near crops as a deterrent for vermin.

6. Keep Pets Away

As much as we love our pets, they can sometimes be a nuisance around plants. Next door’s cat can also be an uninvited guest, using the flowerbed as a litter tray.

Try repelling them by spraying your plants and mulch with essential oils. Peppermint and orange oils are great home remedies you can use against cats. They detest the smell of these oils.

Additionally, dogs do not like the scent of black pepper essential oil near their sensitive noses.

7. Treat Insect Bites and Stings

This is one of the perils of the garden in spring and summer, but one that certain essential oils can help alleviate.

For a DIY remedy for insect bites and stings, combine a teaspoon of apple cider with lavender, basil, and chamomile essential oils (2 drops of each). Apply to affected areas with a cotton ball to stop bites from itching.

Keep this handy when weeding or working in the garden, and swab any bites or stings immediately.

8. Repel Mosquitoes

Most people are familiar with the use of citronella to combat mosquitoes and gnats on the beach and in the garden.

Candles, sprays, and other citronella repellents are familiar items in the summer months, but there are others to try out.

Combine 10 drops of a strong-smelling oil like eucalyptus, citronella, lemongrass, peppermint, jojoba, or garlic oil with 2 ounces of water in a small spray bottle.

Additionally, add 1 ounce of witch hazel to the mixture. Moreover, you can use any or a combination of these oils.

Shake well and spray around your home. You can also use it on your clothes.

9. Disinfecting Spray

Some plants produce oils with disinfectant properties. Tea tree oil is one of the best known for this purpose.

Lavender oil also has natural disinfecting properties, as do citrus oils like orange and lemon.

For a disinfecting spray, combine 10 to 15 drops of the oil of your choice with one cup of water. Next, add 1/4 cup of white vinegar.

Shake well and spray on surfaces to minimize germs and bacteria.

10. Set the Mood

Some essential oils can also create a good mood in the garden. A lovely evening can be enhanced by the introduction of aromatic oils on a burner.

The choice is wide with essential oils that enhance mood and can be just whatever shifts your emotions, brings peace, and relieves stress.

Neroli, lavender, orange, lemongrass, and bergamot oils all have calming effects.

The Best Essential Oils for Gardening

Many essential oils are multi-functional but are particularly useful in the garden.

Pungent oils like lavender, peppermint, rosemary, lemongrass, and cinnamon are best at repelling flying insects like gnats and mosquitoes. Plus, cedarwood, pine, and hyssop essential oils work against slugs and snails.

Besides, tea tree oil, lavender, and orange attract pollinators and have disinfecting and anti-fungal benefits. Peppermint, cinnamon, and clove oils are also great for killing weeds.


All of these essential oils can benefit the garden in one way or another. And when used correctly, they are both safe and good for your indoor and outdoor plants.

Sasha Brown

Sasha Brown is a blogger and lover of all things natural.


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