Baking soda has been used in cooking to help make finished products light and fluffy and to leaven bread for hundreds of years. It has also taken center stage in recent years as a natural, chemical-free cleaning product for the home. It has also been used to remove food odors from the refrigerator, but did you realize that baking soda also works in the garden? Yes, that’s right.
The powerful all-natural cleaning agent can also be used in the garden. Expert gardeners use this substance in a variety of green cleaning methods and to get rid of many harmful pests.
Baking soda or sodium bicarbonate and is a highly alkaline substance for your garden as a natural cleaning agent, to care for plants, a soil amendment, to control weeds and pests, to treat fungal diseases, and more. Here are twenty ways you can use baking soda in your garden.
Baking Soda Benefits the Garden
If you are one of the millions of households that have switched to green living, then baking soda has become an integral part of your life. Along with being a fantastic green cleaner, it has dozens of uses around the house and in your garden. If you are serious about tending an organic garden, then baking soda should be one of your top tools to use throughout the growing season.
Baking Soda Cleans Plant Leaves
Plants need photosynthesis to survive. To help all your plants make the most out of the sunshine, they do receive; you need to keep their leaves clean. You can do this by lightly wiping them with a sponge or cloth that is dampened with a diluted solution of water and baking soda. Add a half a teaspoon of baking soda to a liter of filtered water to make this gentle cleaning product.
Gives Your Plants a Boost in Your Garden
If your plants look listless, use baking soda to give them a little boost. This recipe can be used to water your plants to perk them up again.
Add the ingredients to a large bucket. Stir to dissolve the baking soda and Epsom salt. Pour the solution on your plants monthly to perk up all your plants. Roses really like this treatment.
Baking Soda Stimulates Blooming
Begonias, hydrangeas, and geraniums all like more alkaline soil. Since baking soda is alkaline, help stimulate their blooming by watering them monthly with a solution of two quarts water and one tablespoon baking soda. Feeding these plants every month with this unique tonic will have them blooming all season.
Keep Fresh Cut Flowers Longer
Mixing a tablespoon of baking soda with two quarts of water is a great way to keep your fresh cut flowers fresh for longer. For the best results, you want to change the solution every couple of days.
Adding Baking Soda Will Produce Sweeter Tomatoes
To make the soil around your tomato plants less acidic, add baking soda. For sweeter tomatoes, add some Epsom salt, as well.
Sprinkle baking soda over the soil that surrounds your tomato plant and then water. Having soil around your tomato plants that is less acidic means you’ll have less acidic tomatoes. For plants that need acidic soil, use coffee grounds in your garden.
Soil Testing and Amendment in the Garden
Do a simple pH test on your soil with baking soda. Your plants absorb the minerals found in the ground through their roots. If the soil is too acidic or alkaline, it hampers this process. Conduct a simple home experiment using baking soda and vinegar to test your soil’s pH levels.
Place the two soil samples into small cups. Add the vinegar to one of the cups. If the soil bubbles, the soil is alkaline.
This means your soil has a pH level of seven or more. If it doesn’t bubble, use the other soil sample to test the acidity. Add the baking soda to the water and pour the solution into the second cup. If the soil bubbles, you have acidic soil with a pH level of seven or below.
If the test reveals that your soil is acidic, you can amend the problem by sprinkling baking soda over your soil just before you water. This should help to reduce the acidity of your soil. Continue to test your soil weekly until it no longer bubbles when exposed to water and baking soda.
Use Baking Soda to Prevent Fungal Disease
While baking soda won’t kill fungus on your plants, it will create a pH condition that is hostile to the growth of the fungus. To prevent fungus from growing, you’ll need to do the following.
Combine the water, baking soda, and dish soap in a small bowl. Mix to dissolve the baking soda and add the solution to a spray bottle. Spray the tops and bottoms of the leaves in the morning, when the weather is cold, so the leaves have enough time to dry.
Treat Powdery Mildew With a Baking Soda Solution
If fungus and mildew have already set in on your plants, you can still treat it with a stronger solution that contains baking soda. Here’s a recipe for an all-natural mildew treatment for your plants.
Combine the ingredients in a spray bottle and shake to mix. Spray the affected plants weekly on overcast days. Spraying this mixture on plants during the heat of the day will burn them. This mixture is especially useful for squash, zinnias, lilacs, and cucumbers.
Natural Gardening: Treat Tomato Disease
To prevent and treat fungal infections in tomato plants, create a solution of aspirin and baking soda. Spraying your plants with this solution will help to stop leaf spot and keep early blight from taking hold
In a spray bottle, combine all the ingredients. Shake thoroughly to ensure the aspirin and baking soda have dissolved. Spray your tomato plants with the treatment.
Create an Organic Garden Spray from Baking Soda
This all-natural recipe is excellent for treating and maintaining a variety of plant pests and conditions. It serves as a homemade leaf miner spray and repels spider mites, aphids, black spot fungus, and powdery mildew.
Combine all ingredients in a spray bottle. Spray your plants with water first to knock off the beneficial insects, since this solution will kill them. Every month, in the late evening, spray your plants with the mixture.
Combat Spider Mites and Aphids Around Your Plants
Spider mites and aphids can be harmful to your plants. Spider mites suck the contents from the leaves of plants, draining them of their nutrients. Use baking soda as a mild deterrent to take care of these pesky insects. The best part of this recipe is that it won’t harm the beneficial insects in your garden.
Blend the ingredients and pour into a spray bottle to get rid of aphids and mites, as well as other annoying bugs. Spray the solution onto the affected areas every couple of days until the aphids and spider mites are gone. Store in an area out of the heat so the oil doesn’t become rancid too quickly.
Baking Soda Will Eliminate Harmful Insect Infestations
Don’t let harmful insects ruin your plants and infest your garden. With this simple combination, rid your plants of pesky insect infestations quickly.
Combine the ingredients in a spray bottle. Shake well to mix the ingredients. Spray on plants every three days until the insects disappear.
Follow up weekly, spraying your plants to prevent reinfestation. For a more long-term approach to fight insects around your plants consider using diatomaceous earth in your garden.
Natural Ant Killer Baking Soda
Powdered sugar and baking soda are a natural ant killer that creates a fatal bait. Mix equal amounts of the ingredients and sprinkle over ant hills. When the ants eat the mixture, they carry it back to their nests, killing the ants within.
The sugar attracts the ants, while the baking soda kills them. Be sure to use powdered sugar and not granulated sugar, as the ants will pick out the granulated sugar, leaving the bakisng soda behind.
Kill Gnats In Your Garden
If your yard has leaf piles or you have a compost pile, then you probably have a gnat problem. As with hydrogen peroxide for plants, baking soda works to keep gnats away from your garden.
To get rid of gnats you can use four tablespoons of baking soda with a gallon of water and a teaspoon of biodegradable soap. Spray or pour the mix over your pile of leaves or compost to kill off the gnats.
The Perfect Organic Insect Repellent
This recipe makes an organic insect repellent concentrate. Add two tablespoons of the concentrate to a cup of warm water.
Add the ingredients to a plastic or glass container with a tightly-fitting lid and stir the ingredients to mix. Return the top to the jar and store at room temperature.
When ready to use mix two tablespoons of the dry mixture to one cup warm water in a plastic or glass spray bottle. Shake to mix. Spray the solution around any area where you want to get rid of unwanted bugs and as an effective mosquito repellent spray.
Use Baking Soda to Eliminate Ground Dwelling Pests
Gardens attract ground dwelling pests like slugs and roaches.
To eliminate the slugs, silverfish, and roaches that like to hide in your garden and feed on your plants, sprinkle baking soda lightly around the soil. Alternatively, use neem oil for plants to get rid of slugs. Let the area dry, and reapply after it rains.
Sprinkle Some Baking Soda to Kill Slugs
Slugs eat and destroy the plants in your garden. A little baking soda kills these unwanted garden wreckers quickly.
Sprinkle the slimy creatures with baking soda. Be careful not to get the baking soda on your plants.
Get Rid of Cabbage Worms in the Garden
Cabbage worms are hungry little caterpillars that feast on cabbage, kale, and broccoli. Kill them with a mixture of equal amounts of white flour and baking soda.
Dust the Brassicas plants with the mixture to get rid of destructive cabbage worms. Apply the mixture every three to four days to keep the garden free from cabbage worms.
Natural Way to Kill Crabgrass and Other Weeds
For getting rid of crabgrass and other weeds, wet the crabgrass and weeds in your yard with the hose or watering can to saturate them thoroughly. Apply a thick coat of baking soda to the base of the weeds and directly onto their leaves. To stop poison ivy from growing back, periodically reapply baking soda to the plants and the area where this harmful weed grows.
It’s important to avoid getting baking soda on plants you want to keep, as the baking soda burns the leaves and will kill them, too. A mixture of baking soda, vinegar, and dish soap is the best way to get rid of dandelions and other annoying weeds like crabgrass, too.
Baking Soda Weed Killer
Sprinkle baking soda weed killer without resorting to harmful chemicals. To get in between the sidewalk cracks and spaces between pavers, use a whisk broom to sweep the powder into these hard to reach areas.
While baking soda can be a handy tool for natural gardening, you don’t want to rely upon it entirely. Like with any other natural ingredient, if it is overused, it will lose its efficiency. This is why you need to establish a schedule for sound garden management.
Baking soda is an excellent alternative to the harsh chemical products that you may use to kill weeds, battle pests, and defeat diseases.
We hope you liked learning about the different ways you can use baking soda in the garden. If you found this guide helpful, feel free to pass it along to your friends.