But that moment of tranquillity can easily be interrupted by the presence of creepy crawleys…
If you don’t necessarily want to kill the little critters, but would still like to rid your outdoor and indoor environments of them, essential oils are a great way to replace toxic bug sprays. They won’t harm you, your children, or your pets.
Peppermint. Refreshing and ideal for the Fall and Winter seasons, peppermint is powerfully fragrant. It’s this Christmas-y scent that spiders despise.
Tea Tree. This is one of the most versatile and well-known essential oils. A powerful cleanser and disinfectant, it provides antibacterial and antifungal abilities along with a potent fragrance that spiders will retreat from.
What you’ll need:
– Tea Tree Oil (100% pure, if possible)
– Peppermint Oil (100% pure, if possible)
… you may wish to use either or alone but the combination is most effective.
– Spray bottle (glass is best for storing the mixture but for one time use plastic is sufficient)
– 5-7 drops of tea tree oil
– 5-7 drops of peppermint oil
– 500mL of water
Pour the water into a spray bottle. Add your choice of essential oils and shake well to blend the mixture.
Use your spider spray inside cracks, around doors, light fixtures, and windows. You can even spray it directly onto spider webs. Reapply once a week anywhere spiders tend to return during peak seasons.
Want to boost up your essential oil spider spray?
This simple water and essential oil mixture is usually enough to keep bugs away, break down webs, and in some cases even kill creepy crawly spiders when sprayed directly on them. But there are some types of spiders that can be more resistant than others. If you find that you need a more powerful insecticide, add any of the following ingredients to your homemade bug spray. Start with small amounts at first until you see what combination works best for your home.
Liquid Soap – You can use regular dish soap, or a multi-purpose castile liquid. The soap will kill just about anything that has an exoskeleton. Use about 5 drops of liquid soap per 1 quart of water.
Vinegar – The natural acidity of vinegar is a deterrent to spiders and other insects as well. It’s helpful to spray around the home as a disinfectant, too!
Table Salt – A high potency saline mixture is enough to irritate the senses of a spider on its own. When added to a water/essential oil mixture, it helps to blend the ingredients while increasing potency.
Baking Soda – This natural household cleanser has the ability to kill off bacteria and other microscopic pests. It’s this same quality that makes it an effective addition to any anti-spider spray.
Why do essential oils work to repel spiders?
Spiders are fascinating creatures. For this reason, many people don’t necessarily want to harm them, they just don’t want them in their homes. Here 5 things you might not know about arachnids:
1. Spiders can only eat liquid.
2. They are covered in hairs that trap water so they can’t get wet.
3. If exposed to soap they will drown.
4. There are about 38,000 species of spiders and researchers believe many more are out there.
5. Most spiders live for about a year. (However, some tarantulas live for more than 20 years!)
One of the most interesting things about spiders is that their sense of taste and smell works through the use of sensory organs on their legs and feet. This is why essential oils are so effective in repelling them. Spiders simply cannot stand the smell of some plants (especially those listed above)!
While spiders and their webs can be beautiful, they can also be dangerous. Some spider bites can actually hospitalize an adult! So use your homemade spider repellent in and around your home to keep creepy crawlers at a safe distance.
Choosing the best essential oils:
When using essential oils as an insect repellent, potency is key. There are a lot of companies out there that claim to provide high-quality volatile oils that contain concentrated levels of active compounds… but it’s simply not true. One way to select the best quality oil is to chose one that is 100% pure (not “100% natural” but “100% pure”). Unfortunately, many companies today are manufacturing hydrosols (or watered-down essential oils), and calling them “therapeutic”.