Let’s Get Neem Straight


No matter indoors or outdoors bugs are part of the garden. Unfortunately gardeners and growers will go to extreme measures to eradicate bugs putting their plants and their own health at risk.

It is absolutely possible with good protocol and due diligence to control and mange all type of garden pests with natural based products.

We know this to be true from real life experience. In other posting we will go in to pest specific protocols but here we will set straight the facts on Neem , truly a gift for our gardens.


Neem is a tree, it possess all type of useful properties.

 Neem oil is pressed from the seeds. Azadirachtin is an extract from the seeds. Although both come from the neem seed they work very differently and are often confused with each other. Here’s a simple but concise explanation of two very useful pest products.


Azadirachtin aka amazing

This organic extract stops insects from eating and reproducing. It is also a great repellent. It is sold under various product names: Azamax, Azasol, Azatrol are a few.

Key points for effective results

  • Biodegrades in 48 hours
  • Must be used at least 3 times in 7 days to see results
  • Mix fresh every time, it degrades in water. If you use some mixed 2 or 3 days ago its potency has greatly reduced.
  • Can be used on the leaves, fruits, flowers and in the root zone
  • Can be used on young seedlings and rooted cutting as well as up to harvest
  • Has shown to have a systemic property (goes in the plant’s system for 24 hours or so)
  • Insects do not build a resistance to it
  • Works on all types of pest. Spider mites, aphids, whiteflies, thrips, broad mites, root aphids and more.
  • Can be used in conjunction with other natural pest products

Not an oil product. Remember Azidirachtin does not kill bugs on contact. They will still be moving around but remember they are no longer eating the plant. They will starve to death and even better stop laying eggs or hatching young. After 3 applications in 7 days the bug population will be dramatically less if not eliminated


Neem Oil

Pressed from the seed of the neem tree, neem oil works by coating and suffocating insects and sometimes the eggs of bugs.

Key points for effective results

  • Biodegrades in 7-10 days
  • Use every 7 days at most. More often can cause plant stress due to reduced transpiration
  • Mix fresh every time. It is recommended to use some type emulsifier to help the oil spread thinner on the leaves. There are available wetting agent products but a few drop of dish soap can do the job.
  • Never use in the root zone unless product specifically says it can
  • Use only on well established vegetative plants, never use on stressed plants
  • Never use in temperatures above 80’ F, spray only when lights are off indoors, outdoors in the evening or on very grey days
  • Insects do not build a resistance to it
  • Works well on spider mites, aphids, white flies and other leaf based insects
  • If using as a dunk, always keep solution mixed as the oil wants to come to the top

You will find Neem oil available in many variations. Some will be more refined, some will be mixed with various ingredients said to improve performance.