What are the Most Common Uses for Neem Oil Insecticide?

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  • Written By: Jeri Sullivan
  • Edited By: Heather Bailey
  • Last Modified Date: 15 August 2019
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Neem oil is a product of the evergreen tree Azadirachta indica, and is primarily used as an organic insecticide. The most common uses for neem oil insecticide are pest control, birth control for insects and rodents, and as a fungus deterrent. Neem oil is also used in some cosmetics and hair products as well as a folk remedy to treat skin rashes such as acne.

Neem oil is extracted from the evergreen trees using either pressing or solvent extraction. The pressing process works by crushing the seeds and retaining the oil. Solvent extraction works by funneling the neem oil away from the rest of the evergreen seed particles using water and an organic solvent. As the oil is separated, it is filtered to remove impurities and the remaining oil is manufactured into neem oil insecticide.

For organic farmers, neem oil insecticide provides an appropriate level of insect and rodent control without potentially harmful chemicals being applied to food or water sources. The neem oil has been shown to be a successful deterrent against infestations of aphids, cabbage worms, Japanese beetles, mealy bug, and moth larvae. In addition, neem oil insecticide has been found safe to use for combating indoor pests such as ants, termites, mosquitoes, roaches, bedbugs, and the common housefly.


Neem oil insecticide is effective due to its unique ability to create infertility in pests and rodents. Neem oil appears to interfere with how a fertilized egg implants itself on the uterine wall. When ingested by pests or rodents during mating season or immediately following fertilization, neem oil insecticide acts as a catalyst for the body to reabsorb the fertilized egg, which terminates pregnancy. Successive applications of neem oil insecticide are required throughout the growing season for continued effectiveness.

When neem oil is applied directly to a plant's leaves, it acts as a fungus deterrent by preventing air circulation and choking off moisture. This causes the fungus to die but does not harm the growing plant. Other plant diseases thought to be controlled through the use of neem oil insecticide include black spot, rust fungus, and powdery mildew.

Though not considered harmful to mammals, pregnant women should avoid contact with neem oil, as studies have been inconclusive regarding whether the product will have the same effect on human fertilization as it does on insects and rodents. If using neem oil is required by a pregnant women, she should always wear gloves and wash her hands thoroughly after handling plants that have been treated.


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Post 3

I sprayed a tree on my property with neem oil insecticide. It had aphids and it was just looking awful. Within just a week, the tree started looking so much better.

The only downside to neem oil insecticide is that it doesn't smell great. I think that's how it repels insects but I don't think I would use it inside the home or on my skin. I just dislike the scent.

Post 2

Nee oil can even be used by humans to kill and repel lice and larvae. It's not safe for young children or pregnant women to use, but adults can use it in their hair and scalp to kill lice.

I actually use a neem oil shampoo, not for lice, but for a scalp fungal infection that has caused itching and oil. It is working great.

So neem oil is basically a great way to get rid of all pests and insects. It works in the yard, in the home and also for the body. The same product shouldn't be used for all these purposes though. Neem oil that will be used on the skin should be made specifically for that and it should always be diluted with water or another oil.

Post 1

Neem oil insecticide also kills and repels ticks which is important. Ticks spread diseases such as Lyme disease to humans and many other diseases to animals. So neem oil is a great way to keep ticks away from animals and people.

There was an increase in ticks last year and one of our dogs ended up getting sick due to a tick. We had been avoiding insecticides that contain chemicals because of the dangers to plants, animals, soil and groundwater. When we learned about neem oil and its use as an insecticide, we were very excited. We purchased it, diluted it and sprayed it throughout the yard. Needless to say, the ticks just disappeared after that.

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