Baking soda isn’t just for baking or cleaning around the house; it can also be a handy tool in your garden. This common household ingredient can serve various purposes, from pest control to soil amendment. Here are some easy and effective ways to use baking soda in your garden:

  1. Controlling Powdery Mildew:
    • Mix 1 tablespoon of baking soda, 1/2 teaspoon of liquid soap, and 1 gallon of water.
    • Spray this solution on plants affected by powdery mildew, such as cucumbers, squash, or roses.
    • Repeat every 1-2 weeks, especially during humid weather, to prevent the spread of the fungus.
  2. Neutralizing Soil pH:
    • Test your soil pH using a soil testing kit.
    • If your soil is too acidic (low pH), sprinkle a thin layer of baking soda around alkaline-loving plants like tomatoes or peppers.
    • Water the soil thoroughly to help distribute the baking soda and raise the pH level gradually.
  3. Discouraging Weeds:
    • Sprinkle baking soda between the cracks of paving stones or sidewalks where weeds tend to grow.
    • Baking soda can help suppress weed growth by creating unfavorable conditions for germination.
  4. Deterring Pests:
    • Create a non-toxic insecticide by mixing equal parts of baking soda and flour.
    • Dust this mixture on plants affected by cabbage worms, aphids, or other soft-bodied pests.
    • Reapply after rain or watering to maintain effectiveness.
  5. Freshening Compost:
    • Sprinkle a handful of baking soda into your compost bin or pile to help control odors.
    • Baking soda can neutralize acidic compounds and reduce unpleasant smells as organic matter decomposes.
  6. Reviving Plant Health:
    • If your plants are looking stressed or yellow due to excess acidity in the soil, dissolve 1 teaspoon of baking soda in 1 quart of water.
    • Water your plants with this solution to help restore their vitality and green color.
  7. Cleaning Garden Tools:
    • Make a paste using baking soda and water to scrub and clean garden tools, pots, and containers.
    • Baking soda’s mild abrasive properties can help remove dirt, grime, and residue without damaging surfaces.

By incorporating baking soda into your gardening routine, you can tackle common issues naturally and sustainably. Experiment with these methods to discover how baking soda can enhance the health and productivity of your garden.