Have you heard about diatomaceous earth? Diatomaceous earth is a naturally occurring product that is mined out of old lakebeds. This versatile product is completely organic and safe to use around family and pets. Be sure when choosing diatomaceous earth that you only use the organic food grade variety that is natural-milled, unheated, amorphous (non-crystalline) silicon dioxide. Click here to check out a great choice. There are so many wonderful ways you can use diatomaceous earth and it is so easy to try. Today I am going to share the top 10 surprising uses for diatomaceous earth.
We’ll start with the most common use. Even if you’re generally bug friendly but don’t want them in your home, you’re in luck. Diatomaceous earth is a natural and safe repellent that deters insects from entering in the first place. Dust inside and outside of your home to repel and kill insects. Here is a list of insects many people have used diatomaceous earth to treat:
- Bed bugs
- And so many others
Diatomaceous earth can be directly applied on your dog or cat to get rid of fleas. Start at the base of the tail, moving towards the head and pushing the fur up to expose the skin. Apply diatomaceous earth with your hand and place it on the skin. Try not to get DE into your pet’s ears or eyes and remember to apply diatomaceous earth in the home to break the flea cycle.
Eating Diatomaceous Earth
This is perhaps one of the more “Googled” terms about diatomaceous earth. Many people are interested in the potential health benefits—healthier hair, nails, skin—that come from eating DE. Other potential benefits include DE lowering blood cholesterol and the health benefits of silica (food grade DE is 85 percent silica). Remember to only eat organic food grade diatomaceous earth.
Garden pest control
Sometimes an infestation can grow rampant, to the point it becomes necessary to pull out the diatomaceous earth. The kind of pest you have in your garden generally dictates the mode of application:
Flying insects: Dust your plants with diatomaceous earth after you have watered them. Make sure you lightly spray the plants as well to help the diatomaceous earth stick. Make sure to get underneath the leaves as well. This is best done in the morning to allow the DE to dry.
Ground insects: This works especially well on slugs. Put a ring of diatomaceous earth around the plants that are actively getting chomped on. Be sure to keep any leaf out from touching to soil outside the ring of DE. You don’t want to inadvertently use a “ladder” for these pests to get on.
Some pet owners want to use an alternative to a synthetic de-wormer, and they do this by adding diatomaceous earth to their pet’s food. Here are the ratios for your pet’s daily dosage:
- Puppies & Small Dogs: ½ tsp
- Dog under 50 lb: 1 tsp
- Dog over 50 lb: 1 tbsp
- Dog over 100 lb: 2 tbsp
- Kittens: ½ tsp
- Cats: 1 tsp
Prolonged food storage
An article by the University of Minnesota states that almost all dry food is susceptible to a beetle infestation. Diatomaceous earth protects food from infestations and it keeps food dry which prevents food from clumping, germinating, or going moldy. If you have grains, legumes, beans, rice, or corn in storage then adding DE works well to keep it protected and dry.
Dust your chicken coop
Many chicken keepers add diatomaceous earth to their chicken coop and chickens’ dust bath to protect their chickens against lice and mites. Even if you coop currently doesn’t have this problem, a regular regime of diatomaceous earth can prevent these problems from cropping up.
The funny thing is that lots of toothpastes already use diatomaceous earth as an ingredient because it is a mild abrasive. You can add a pinch of diatomaceous earth to your toothpaste before you brush in the morning and you’ll be surprised at how clean your teeth feel afterwards.
If you have naturally oily skin, then mix diatomaceous earth in water until it reaches the consistency of paste. Place the paste on your face like a mask and let it rest there for at least a few minutes. Afterwards, wash it off with water. Do this no more than once or twice week because diatomaceous earth will dry out your skin.
You can deodorize numerous ways using diatomaceous earth. Here are a few ways to deodorize in your home:
- For smelly outdoor garbage, sprinkle diatomaceous earth to cover the bottom of a dry garbage can.
- Add diatomaceous earth to your cat’s litter box by mixing in it thoroughly with a spatula or gloved hands. Coupled with its deodorizing capabilities, DE absorbs liquids twice its weight.
- For smelly footwear, dust the bottom of each shoe with diatomaceous earth and leave it for at least eight hours.
- Carpets absorb a lot of smells, so vacuum your carpet and then dust it with diatomaceous earth. Leave it for at least 12 to 24 hours.
I hope that you will try diatomaceous earth and see how fantastic it is for so many different uses!
Have you ever used Diatomaceous earth? What did you use it for and how did you like it? Please contribute to the conversation by leaving a comment.
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Guest Post provided by Beth Haymond. Beth Haymond has worked as the content writer at DiatomaceousEarth.com for almost two years, after graduating from college with a degree in English. She also manages the social media side of things. Check out DiatomaceousEarth.com on Facebook and Twitter.