Hostas are plants with attractive foliage that adds interest to shady areas where most plants won't grow well. However, they are prone to insect pests. A homemade insecticidal spray helps control insects on ornamental plants such as hostas, or on vegetable or herb plants.
Making the Concentrate
Mix 1 tbsp. of liquid dish soap with 1 cup of vegetable oil. Use fresh, unused oil; such as peanut oil, soybean oil, corn oil or safflower oil. Store the concentrate in a sealed plastic container.
Mixing the Insect Spray
Place 1 pt. of water in a plastic spray bottle. Add 4 tsp. of the concentrate and shake gently to blend, and then clearly label the container.
Using the Insect Spray
Use the homemade insect spray as needed to control aphids, spider mites, whiteflies and other common garden pests. Spray the tops and bottoms of infested leaves generously with the homemade insect spray. The spray is most effective when temperatures are below 85 degrees F.
M.H. Dyer began her writing career as a staff writer at a community newspaper and is now a full-time commercial writer. She writes about a variety of topics, with a focus on sustainable, pesticide- and herbicide-free gardening. She is an Oregon State University Master Gardener and Master Naturalist and holds a Master of Fine Arts in creative nonfiction writing.