Make your own Fly Spray
Mary Ann Simonds shows you how!
Ingredients to look for when choosing fly control products
Many of us think “all natural” means no toxic chemicals or poisons. We’re wrong.
Don’t be deceived when you see “All Natural” on that bottle of fly spray. Check the ingredient label. Approved as “natural” by the EPA, and commonly used in fly repellents today are Allethrin, Pyrethrin, Pyrethrum, Permethrin, Resmethrin, Permectrin and DEET.
Look instead for: Citronella Oil, Lemongrass Oil, Lavender Oil, Tea Tree Oil, Eucalyptus Oil, Oil of Rose, Jojoba Oil and Peppermint. Also, did you know that most labeling regulations require only “active” ingredients to be disclosed, in order of most-to-least with a percentage amount displayed. A quick scan of the percentages tells you that not everything is disclosed when it adds up to less than 100%.
• In 190 ml of rainwater or purified water and 2.5 ml of methylated spirits, add 20 drops of sandalwood, 16 drops of sweet marjoram, and 14 drops of wild rosemary essential oils.
Note: Because essential oils oxidize when combined with each other or with other substances, do not keep this preparation for longer than 3 months. Aromatherapist Catherine Bird recommends renewing the mixtures every month to maintain potency.
• After pounding these herbs, place bay leaves, pennyroyal, eucalyptus or cloves in a muslin bag and hang it in the barn.
• Crush fresh mint and rub on your horse
• Mix 4 parts glycerin and 1 part eucalyptus and rub on your arms and legs to keep mosquitoes away.
• Lavender Essential Oil diluted with olive oil will deter deer flies – apply to your horse’s poll area, and yourself, before heading out to ride.
• Anise oil will repel most bugs, especially houseflies, gnats, mosquitoes. One of the best ways is to add a few drops to your laundry soap. Anise may also be added to commercial bug repellents.
• Brush horses with EO of lemongrass or citronella by placing drops directly onto the brush to help repel flies and mosquitoes.
• Hang bunches of flowering Elecampane (Inula helenium) in your barn. This sticky plant acts as a natural flycatcher. Or try sprigs of Sage, Rosemary or Chamomile. Once the plants are full of flies, immerse them in water to drown the flies.