We had a bit of an icky situation recently. Without going into too many details that will make you itch for a week just from reading about them, we found a great solution to a “biting insect” problem that is safe for kids & pets and is all natural. We needed something that we could treat the entire house with; from the attic to the carpet. After a ton of research, I found that cedar oil kills biting insects like mosquitos, fleas, mites, & ticks, by causing a reaction that disrupts their breathing. It’s completely natural and as a native Austinite, I’m especially happy that someone found a use for a tree that is a pest itself.
It makes a lot of sense. We use cedar to line closets & trunks and in place of moth balls for storing wool & cloth to keep it free from moths & silverfish – and they are all a part of the same type of insect. I think we tend to over-think these things since we are so used to companies marketing patented chemicals and gadgets, but often the best way to control nature is with nature.
Next, we needed a delivery system. I’ve made my own tea tree oil sprays for cleaning and sanitizing using rubbing alcohol or vinegar, which I’ve read you can do with cedar oil as well. For cedar oil, a 10% concentration should do the trick. We also wanted to treat the attics and found cedar granules for that application.
Turns out, the Texas-based company CedarCide makes an array of all-natural pest control products including granules and a spray. They shipped same day, even though I ordered in the afternoon. Our order was delivered the next day with regular shipping.
We purchased 4 tubs of granules and a gallon of spray. Clearly, we mean business. The spray is safe to spray on people & pets, so we felt comfortable spraying it in areas of the house where the girls play including their rooms. I’ve used tea tree oil before to treat newborn kittens for fleas, but this is something I’d consider for that need in the future.
It does have a cedar smell so it made our home smell like a mountain lodge. It didn’t really bother us and dissipated over a couple days. We will be continuing to treat, but not with as much as we did for our first treatment.
Because it’s an oil, it did make our hard floors slick. I just wiped them down after I finished spraying.
I even sprayed an area of the yard where mosquitoes like to congregate in the shade, and it definitely helped. You can’t spray it on plants, but I did treat the mulch around them.
This may be completely random, but I’m sure there are plenty of people out there desperately looking for a safe pesticide to treat a problem.