One of the uses for marigolds is that is makes an effective spray to repel flies, horse flies, tomato hornworms, leaf-cutting insects and asparagus beetles. There is a natural commercial version that uses marigold as a fly spray for dogs, cats, and possibly horses.
We live in an area with quite a few horse farms, and they are always dealing with that issue, especially on very hot days. No toxic chemicals here to make you or your animals sick.
Thanks to my dear next door neighbor Marie, I was able to forage French marigolds from her shade-dappled flower garden. I had forgotten to plant the seeds this spring, and she was happy to share. Everyone thought these bright orange beauties made the house smell quite interesting. Very green!
Marigold Insect and Fly Spray Recipe:
Simply collect a cup (packed tightly) of marigold leaves, stems, and flowers, and put them into a blender with 2 cups of water. (Note: I used too many flowers ~ more stems is better.)
Pour the fly spray into a glass jar for 24 -48 hours, capped tightly, and allow the natural chemical compounds in the marigold to be drawn out into the water. When you walk by it, shake it once or twice. Easy as that!
Once done, strain out the pulp using a rag or cheesecloth; then squeeze it to get the last drop from the pulp. Add 6 cups water, 1/4 tsp. of Castile soap (this makes it stick to the leaves of your plant), and spray on the plants that are being attacked. Store it in the fridge. Wage war on tomato hornworms and flies!
Note: if you apply the spray on horses or cattle, you might want to leave out the Castile soap.
Marigold fly spray will also work on the tender nose and ears of your cat or dog. That close to their eyes, use a moistened paper towel wipe, applying the fly spray where they are vulnerable so they won’t get bitten by a horse flies on very hot days~ we almost lost our faithful, wonderful apple-faced Siamese cat (Goodness) to a horsefly bite. It laid an egg deep in the tissue on the bridge of his nose. That egg developed into a larvae. It was HORRIBLE! I remember the night my husband almost put him down… well, I said almost…and that’s another story 🙂
Thanks for reading!