An aphid is tiny and can still destroy strong plants. The reason: it never comes alone and multiplies extremely quickly. Time is the second crucial factor. The longer aphids can suck the lifeblood of a plant undisturbed, the more it is weakened. Soft soap is an effective home remedy against these pests. It depends on the timely and correct application!

Features of soft soap

Soft soap is a special kind of soap. It is a mixture of fats and caustic potash. They are available in liquid form or as a paste. Since no chemicals are used in its production, it is also referred to as green soap. Soft soap has the following important properties:

  • pH-neutral
  • without perfume
  • biodegradable
Note: Direct skin contact with the soft soap never poses a danger to people.

Buy soft soap

Soft soap used to be a popular household remedy. It was used for all sorts of cleaning jobs. Even today, this environmentally friendly soap is still popular. That’s why it’s no problem at all to get them quickly when you need them. Every drugstore offers them and also large, well-stocked supermarkets. It is also pleasantly cheap. A liter bottle costs little more than one euro.

Their effectiveness against lice

Soft soap, or rather suds, coats everything it comes in contact with with a fine film. Consequently also all aphids that are sprayed with it. This film immediately bonds the respiratory organs of soft-skinned pests. As a result, you can no longer breathe air and suffocate in no time.

Soft soap solution – the basic recipe

The recipe for the soft soap solution is simple. The only two ingredients needed for this are soft soap and regular tap water. Both must of course be mixed together in the right proportion. For 1 liter of water there are about 20 ml of soft soap. That’s about the equivalent of a tablespoon.

Liquid soft soap dissolves well in cold water. If you use a paste, you should heat the water beforehand and dissolve the soap in it while stirring. But please only use for spraying when the solution has completely cooled down again.

Tip: The consistency of the soft soap solution changes very quickly. Therefore, make them only on the day of their application.

When can soapy water be used?

A soft soap solution can be used on both infested houseplants and outdoor specimens. The type of plant is irrelevant. In the open air, some natural enemies lurk in wait for the lice, e.g. B. the ladybug. It is therefore not always necessary to react immediately if only a few lice can be seen. In any case, the affected plant should be kept in mind. It doesn’t hurt if the soft soap has already been bought and is ready to hand. As soon as it becomes apparent that the lice infestation is not declining or is even increasing, the soft soap must be used against them.

Clearly identify aphids

Not every louse perching on a plant leaf is automatically an aphid . And not all types of lice react to soft soap in the same way. It is therefore important to take a close look at the plant beforehand in order to clearly identify the pests found as aphids. In order for this to succeed, they should be familiar with their typical characteristics:

  • their size is about 1-2 mm
  • they are available in different colors
  • winged and unwinged
  • they occur in greater numbers
  • sit close together on the leaves and stems

The plant itself also shows some clearly visible symptoms of the infestation. These are often noticed first, even before the lice are discovered. The plant shows sluggish growth. The leaves curl, change colour, dry up or even fall off.

Tip: Sticky honeydew on the leaves and the presence of ants are also clear signs of an aphid infestation.

The best time to spray

The soapy water makes no difference in its effect whether it encounters an animal pest or a beneficial one. To ensure that the fine film only covers the lice, you should only spray the solution in the evening hours. Then the air traffic of the useful insects rests. In addition, rain-free weather is important so that the soft soap solution is not immediately washed off the plant.

The application of the soft soap solution

The basic mixture of soft soap and water described above already helps against aphids. Further additives are not necessary.

  1. Fill a spray bottle with the soft soap solution.
  2. Outdoor plants are sprayed in situ. However, place infested indoor plants in the garden or on the balcony so that the fine spray does not settle on furniture and other objects. Alternatively, the plant can be placed in the bathtub.
  3. Spray the entire plant “drip”. Don’t skip the undersides of the leaves either.
  4. Allow the solution to dry before putting a houseplant back in place.
  5. Keep watching the plant.
  6. Repeat the procedure after a week.
Tip: With a dash of spirit or neem oil, the soft soap solution is also effective against other types of lice such as scale, mealybug and blood lice as well as leafhoppers and red spiders.

Commercial soft soap solution

The garden market is huge and no need remains unfulfilled. So there are actually soft soap solutions to buy. Partly already user-friendly in a spray bottle. Soft soap is the simple main ingredient behind euphonious product names. The price, however, is a multiple.

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