Things You'll Need
Diatomaceous earth powder
Try to avoid spreading the diatomaceous earth on windy days. The wind will end up carrying the DE in different directions, preventing you from spreading evenly.
Mix diatomaceous earth with a small amount of water to create a paste. Use a small artist's paintbrush to spread this paste onto the stems and undersides of leaves of garden plants to protect them from sucking insects such as aphids.
Do not mistake pool-grade diatomaceous earth for the food-grade DE used in lawns and gardens. Pool-grade DE is heat-treated, making it unsafe to breathe.
Control unwanted pests in your lawn with an all-natural, safe product known as diatomaceous earth (or "DE"). Diatomaceous earth forms from the remains of a class of algae found in freshwater and marine environments. This silica substance, when finely ground, has tiny razor-sharp edges that cut the bodies of insects that touch or ingest the powder, which dries their bodies and kills them. When sprinkled over lawns and gardens, diatomaceous earth powder will repel and control many types of pests, including ticks, fleas, slugs, ants, termites, grasshoppers, lawn grubs and many more.
Apply the dust on a calm day. Dampen the lawn where you wish to apply the diatomaceous earth powder. Use the garden hose to spray a light mist on the grass and surrounding flowers or plants. The light misting of water will help the diatomaceous powder to stick to the leaves of your grass.
Wear protective clothing such as a long-sleeved shirt, long pants, eye goggles and a face mask. Diatomaceous earth is not poisonous to humans or animals, but the fine powder dust can blow into your eyes and the mucous membranes of your nose and mouth, causing irritation.
Fill the dust sprayer with diatomaceous earth powder. Close the dust sprayer tightly. Pump the handle located on top of the dust sprayer. Point the sprayer tip downward toward the grass, keeping it at about 6 inches above the lawn.
Spray the diatomaceous earth powder onto the lawn in a thin and even coat. Continue to use the dust sprayer until you have covered the entire lawn area and surrounding perimeter sections.
Apply diatomaceous earth powder to the lawn after each hard rain or at least once every month.
Rachel Turner has been writing professionally since 2000, focusing on gardening and home improvement topics. Her articles have appeared online at SlowTravel and in publications such as the "Arkansas Gardeners," "One Step Ahead" and "Writers Now." Turner holds a Bachelor of Arts in English from Arkansas State University.