Return to the Organic Gardening Forum | Post a Follow-Up

 o
Mite spray made of milk and flour

Posted by Julie717 6b OK (My Page) on
Fri, May 27, 11 at 14:25

Has anyone here used a homemade spray for spider mites made of water, milk and flour? I sprayed this on my hollyhocks last weekend and it seems to have worked. My question--does it ever come off? The source I looked at said it would dry up and flake off, but that ain't happening.

We had a terrible storm a few days ago, sheets of water, small hail, the streets were like rivers, but that stuff is still visible on the hollyhock leaves. It's not hideous or anything, but it's not that attractive either. It's mostly collected in the veins, outlining them in white. I don't want to spray soap on the leaves because it seems to be attracting lots of beneficial insects, so should I just leave it alone? Thanks, everyone.


Follow-Up Postings:

 o
RE: Mite spray made of milk and flour

First I've heard of using a flour, milk, and water mixture to control mites. You mix 1/4 (some say 1/2) cup of flour with 1/4 (or 1/2) cup of milk and 1 gallon of water and spray the affected plant. This supposedly makes a paste that traps the wee buggers and they sufficate. Flour paste, in my experience, has always been fairly watere soluble so if a rain does not wash if off the leaves it may just be that too little rain reached that spot. I'd not want that white paste on the leaves very long since it can interfere with the leaves ability to photosynthesize, manufacture nutrients to feed the plkant.


 o
RE: Mite spray made of milk and flour

Hi kimmsr, you were right, I just needed to blast them--I didn't think that rain would have left anything dry. It seemed to work on the mites, but it's only been a week. I'll have to keep an eye on them to make sure they don't come back.

I actually used it twice, sprayed on the first day, then it rained the next day so I sprayed it on again the third day without rinsing off the first batch. I wanted to buy some light horticultural or neem oil but it's hard to find organic pesticides here so I had to go with something homemade.


 o
RE: Mite spray made of milk and flour

Water is usually the recommended control for spider mites. They dislike moist, humid conditions so often just spraying or misting the affected plant on a daily basis is sufficient. It may very well be that the mites were discouraged as much by the rainfall as they were from your concoction!

Mite populations tend to proliferate when conditions are warm and dry. Altering those conditions to make it less habitable to the mites - and that involves water - is typically all it takes to keep them under control.

FWIW, summer-weight oil or refined horticultural oil should be available pretty much anywhere. It has long been used as a common garden pesticide, organic focus or not.


 o
RE: Mite spray made of milk and flour

That's what I thought re: the oil, but I went to the few places in my small town that sell gardening supplies and couldn't find any. They did have a few organic fertilizers, but all the pesticides were chemicals. I live close to Tulsa and I'm sure I could find some there, I just didn't want to go questing that day.

I'm sure the rain helped, too. I am going to be spraying the leaves more with water to keep them away. I had been avoiding that for fear of fungal diseases. We've had a lot of dry weather interspersed with wet weather, really crazy this year.


 o
RE: Mite spray made of milk and flour

Make your own spider miticide with water and soap...or just water...1-20 cents...works cheaper and as effective than Middleton's $8 spamicide.


 o
RE: Mite spray made of milk and flour

Ditto G-gal, used to use a garden hos to control them very effectively in a greenhouse I worked in years ago.


 o Post a Follow-Up

Please Note: Only registered members are able to post messages to this forum.

    If you are a member, please log in.

    If you aren't yet a member, join now!


Return to the Organic Gardening Forum

Information about Posting

  • You must be logged in to post a message. Once you are logged in, a posting window will appear at the bottom of the messages. If you are not a member, please register for an account.
  • Posting is a two-step process. Once you have composed your message, you will be taken to the preview page. You will then have a chance to review your post, make changes and upload photos.
  • After posting your message, you may need to refresh the forum page in order to see it.
  • Before posting copyrighted material, please read about Copyright and Fair Use.
  • We have a strict no-advertising policy!
  • If you would like to practice posting or uploading photos, please visit our Test forum.
  • If you need assistance, please Contact Us and we will be happy to help.


Learn more about in-text links on this page here