Gardener's Guide to Insecticides

This handy guide will teach you everything you need to know about insecticides.

PRODUCT: BT (Bacillus thuringiensis)
METHOD OF APPLICATION: spray/dust
MAJOR INSECTS CONTROLLED: caterpillars
FOR USE ON: vegetables, ornamentals
COMMENTS: organic; nontoxic to people, animals, and beneficial insects; short residual action
 

PRODUCT: CARBARYL (Sevin)
METHOD OF APPLICATION: spray/dust
MAJOR INSECTS CONTROLLED: chewing insects, such as beetles and caterpillars
FOR USE ON: ornamentals, fruits, vegetables
COMMENTS: inorganic; safe to use on edibles; won't control mites; can cause fruit drop on apple trees
 

PRODUCT: DIAZINON
METHOD OF APPLICATION: spray/drop/spreader
MAJOR INSECTS CONTROLLED: aphids, mealybugs, thrips, whiteflies, ants, fleas, ticks, caterpillars, crickets, white grubs, spittlebugs
FOR USE ON: ornamentals, lawn
COMMENTS: inorganic; good residual control; not recommended for edibles; highly toxic to fish and birds
 

PRODUCT: HORTICULTURAL OIL
METHOD OF APPLICATION: spray
MAJOR INSECTS CONTROLLED: insects and mites
FOR USE ON: vegetables, fruits, ornamentals
COMMENTS: must cover plant and pests with spray to be effective; do not apply during drought or high temperatures
 

PRODUCT: INSECTICIDAL SOAP
METHOD OF APPLICATION: spray
MAJOR INSECTS CONTROLLED: aphids, mites, scales, mealybugs
FOR USE ON: vegetables, fruits, houseplants
COMMENTS: organic; nontoxic to people, animals, and beneficial insects; no residual action
 

PRODUCT: MALATHION
METHOD OF APPLICATION: spray
MAJOR INSECTS CONTROLLED: aphids, caterpillars, thrips, whiteflies, leaf rollers, beetles
FOR USE ON: vegetables, fruits, ornamentals
COMMENTS: inorganic; old standby; safe to use on edibles
 

PRODUCT: ORTHENE
METHOD OF APPLICATION: spray/drench
MAJOR INSECTS CONTROLLED: aphids, spider mites, scales, thrips, fire ants, mealybugs, whiteflies, caterpillars, beetles
FOR USE ON: ornamentals
COMMENTS: inorganic; long-lasting, systemic control; not for use on edibles
 

PRODUCT: PYRETHRIN
METHOD OF APPLICATION: spray
MAJOR INSECTS CONTROLLED: all soft-bodied insects
FOR USE ON: vegetables, fruits, ornamentals
COMMENTS: fast-acting, low residual; be sure to spray under leaves to put in contact with pests