Having aphids in your garden can turn a lush, green one into a yellowing, leaf-eaten wasteland of dying plants. The tiny garden pests feed on new plant growth and regularly come out in the spring, and one aphid can multiply into 80 in the course of a week. For gardeners who don't want to introduce toxic insecticides into their yards, there are natural solutions to getting rid of aphids. Here are a few:
Ladybugs: These natural predators of aphids are the most logical choice as nature's way to take care of itself. If the ladybugs don't arrive in your garden naturally, you can buy them at your local garden store. The problem is that after they clean your foliage, the ladybugs will move on to a neighboring garden in search of more aphids.
Garlic water spray: Crush a half dozen garlic cloves and let them sit in water for a few days, then spray the solution on leaves and other areas of plants that are infected with aphids, recommends Roger Marshall, author of "How to Build Your Own Greenhouse."
The best way to avoid aphids is to have your plants in a greenhouse where aphids can't get in unless you open a door or window, Marshall says. If you can't do that, and have plants outside, then a strong jet of water will get rid of aphids on roses and other plants, he says.
Soap spray: This is another spraying option that's natural. Just mix ¼ cup of vegetable oil, two drops of liquid dish soap, and four cups of warm water in a spray bottle and shake well. Spray the leaves and stems of infected plants to get rid of aphids, and spray weekly to keep new ones away.
Ginger spray: Mix ½ cup of finely chopped ginger with two cups of warm water, and let it sit for a few hours. Shake well and spray your plants. It won't kill existing aphids, but will repel them with weekly sprayings.