7 Best Insecticide for Vegetable Garden Reviews & Buying Guide

Home vegetable gardens provide great health benefits with organic produce. You will find in this guide many essential information to choose the best insecticide for vegetable garden for your plants and vegetables.

Ortho Fire Ant Killer, 2 Pack
6,850 Reviews
Ortho Fire Ant Killer, 2 Pack
  • Kills the queen and destroys the mound
  • No watering-in required
  • Treats up to 162 mounds (twin pack 324 mounds total)

The answer for the best insecticide for vegetable gardens is Ortho 275510 Fire Ant Killer. The formula is easy to use and contains ingredients that are safe for humans and pets.

After the first application, the effect can last up to 6 months, protecting your garden from even difficult insects, especially fire ants. Ortho also prevents future mound resurgence.

Insecticide for vegetable garden buying guide

How to know when your vegetable garden has insect problems?

Insects are a part of the natural ecosystem in the garden. There are 2 types of insects:

  • Beneficial insects: bees, ground beetles, ladybugs are examples of beneficial insects. They provide pollination to support plant growth or act as parasitizes by feeding on harmful insects.
7 best insecticide for vegetable garden reviews & buying guide
  • Destructive insects: this type of insect can harm the plants by eating the leaves, fruits, or vegetables.

Below are the 4 common signs to help you know the vegetable garden has harmful insects:

  • Large holes in leaves are one of the most recognizable signs.
  • Sawdust at the plant base. This telltale sign alerts that carpenter ants or beetles are nesting in the garden; they cause sawdust by boring holes into the leaves or branches.
  • Slug trails on the leaves. Slugs live in groups and have a large appetite, they don’t move fast, but the group can eat from one plant to another quickly.
  • Spots on leaves or discolor. Some insects don’t eat leaves, but they draw out the sap from them instead (according to a report by the United States Department of Agriculture – USDA).

When is the best time to use insecticide?

Timing is crucial to maintain the balance for the ecosystem living in the garden. When using insecticide, you can build a consistent schedule to ensure this balance.

How much insecticide do you need?

Based on the size of your garden, you can calculate the volume of insecticide you need to cover it thoroughly. This number can act as the base to calculate the average cost in a year and the frequency to restock insecticide.

How many types of insecticides are there?

Amongst the variety of products on the market, you can choose from 3 types of products:

Liquid insecticide

  • This insecticide category is a convenient ready-to-use plant bug spray formula.
  • It can cover a large part of the garden in one spray.
7 best insecticide for vegetable garden reviews & buying guide
  • Some insecticides spray also has the concentrate version that needs you to dilute it with water before use.
  • In the flip side, it can be pricier compared to the other products.

Granular

  • Granular is easy to use by sprinkling on the ground of the affected parts of the garden.
  • With a proper storage method in a dry area, the granular insecticide can have a long shelf life.
  • However, it can be tricky to apply to plant leaves high above the ground.

Dry dust insecticide

  • The last type provides a long residual effect to protect the plants.
  • It comes with a more affordable price compared to liquid or granular insecticide.
  • More importantly, it covers the garden evenly.

What to look for in insecticide for vegetable gardens?

Effectiveness

Insecticides can work on most common insects, for example, worms and caterpillars. In contrast, species like Japanese beetles and Mexican Bean beetles require special treatment.

Most insecticides eliminate bugs upon direct contact, and this effect will show immediately after the first product application.

7 best insecticide for vegetable garden reviews & buying guide

Another way to eliminate bugs is through digestion. After the treatment session, the insecticide will need some time to wait for the bugs to feed on the leaves or vegetables, occasionally up to 3 days or even 1 week.

Insecticides with dual effects can also protect the garden for a long time, thanks to the remaining substances on the plants after treatment.

Usability

Do you need to combine the product with additional substances, or can you use it separately? The liquid insecticide in the concentrate formula needs to be watered-down for the product to take effect.

Another factor to consider is the product volume., which will help you calculate the application frequency.

Safety

Each manufacturer has a different scale for chemicals in their product’s formula.

Most chemical products can work on both beneficial and harmful bugs. The usage duration needs to be balanced to protect the natural organism.

The chemical formula is an ideal choice if you have a heavily-infested garden that needs an emergency treatment. Emergency cases may require additional care afterwards to ensure the edible produce is safe for humans.

Organic formula offers safe insecticide; however, you will need to reapply the product after a short amount of time.

Beginners in gardening often make the mistake of increasing the application frequency for organic insecticides in order to enhance the effectiveness. This method may backfire, causing harm to beneficial insects, and even clogging the ground as a result.

Let’s learn about natural insecticides that you can use in your vegetable garden:

Best insecticide for vegetable garden reviews

Ortho Fire Ant Killer – Best Overall

Ortho Fire Ant Killer, 2 Pack
6,850 Reviews
Ortho Fire Ant Killer, 2 Pack
  • Kills the queen and destroys the mound
  • No watering-in required
  • Treats up to 162 mounds (twin pack 324 mounds total)

Features

Ortho Fire Ant Killer is the best insecticide to kill the queen and destroy mounds, preventing new ant mounds for up to 6 months.

With the budget-friendly twin pack, you can treat up to 324 mounds while maintaining cost efficiency. After the first sprinkle, the powder will take effect within 24 to 48 hours.

Ortho is suitable for a variety of plants, from flowers, ornamentals, shrubs, to fruit trees.

You will need to avoid the windows when storing Ortho, because the sunlight may change the formula to become toxic.

What we like

  • Future ant mound resurgence prevention.
  • Ready-to-use dry powder.
  • A long-lasting effect up to 6 months.
  • No watering-in.
  • Budget-friendly price.

What can be improved?

  • Harmful substances in direct sunlight.

Bonide Garden Dust Insect Control – Best for residual effect

Sale
Bonide (BND786) - Garden Dust Insect Control, Outdoor...
  • INSECT KILLER & REPELLENT - This pest control is great for...
  • PROTECTS VEGETABLES, ROSES & FLOWERS - Garden Dust protects...
  • DUAL ACTION CONTROL - Contact kill gives you immediate...

Features

This insecticide dust from Bonide provides dual effects to protect your garden. After the application, the dust can kill insects upon contact.

Then, the remaining dust will maintain the effects on new insects residing in the treated area.

Bonide can control over 50 species of insects: ants, caterpillars, ticks, aphids, and so on. A point to note is the effect can only last for 4 months.

A balanced application frequency is needed to avoid exterminating beneficial bugs.

What we like

  • Lightweight.
  • Easy to use.
  • Residual effect for future bug nesting prevention.
  • Insect controls for aphids, beetles, ticks, flies, etc.
  • Floral and vegetable plant insecticide.

What can be improved?

  • The effect can last up to only 4 weeks.
  • Overuse may kill plants or beneficial bugs.

Natural Guard Spinosad Soap – Best for organic pest control

Sale
Natural Guard Spinosad Soap
  • Specially formulated to protect your vegetables, crops,...
  • Uses a powerful combination of two active ingredients, it...
  • Effective against powdery mildew when it is sprayed directly...

Features

Although Natural Guard has low toxic ingredients, the formula can still work on the types of bugs that are considered difficult to handle: aphids, leaf cutter ants, Japanese beetles, and so on.

Natural Guard is also an ideal insecticide for plants in the early growth stages.

However, you should avoid insect treatment when the plants are in pollination time, as Natural Guard may prevent the process.

What we like

  • Active ingredients for pest controls.
  • Ready-to-use liquid formula.
  • Complete coverage on plants.
  • Long-lasting protection.
  • Garden safe insect killer on contact with humans and pets.

What can be improved?

  • Expensive price.
  • Not a treatment for plants in pollination time.

Final Stop Vegetable Garden Insect Killer – Best for edible plants protection

Features

If you have critical insect problems in the garden, you can use Final Stop even before the harvest time.

Following the easy instruction of spraying once a day, 2 days a week, Final Stop formula can kill insects completely in 2 weeks.

But take note that the formula requires some time to take effect on the insect eggs and larvae.

What we like

  • Organic formula with all-natural ingredients.
  • Safe contact with humans and pets.
  • Active ingredients suitable for the harvest time.
  • Easy-to-use spray formula.
  • Wide range of bug controls.

What can be improved?

  • The organic formula is too mild for the insect eggs, larvae, and succulents.

Spectracide Insect Killer Concentrate – Best for immediate treatment

Sale
Spectracide 1-Gallon Acer Plus Triazicide Insect Killer for...
  • FAST-ACTING FORMULA: Protects lawns, vegetables, flowers,...
  • ACRE PLUS: Covers up to 64,000 square feet of lawn
  • KILLS 180+ PESTS ON CONTACT: Kills above and below ground...

Features

Before using Spectracide, you will need to wear protective equipment to ensure safety.

After blending the instructed amount of Spectracide concentrate formula with water, you can start applying the insecticide for plants with the easy spraying step.

Spectracide can treat underground insects in an area up to 64,000 square feet and also works for insects nesting in branches high above the ground. During the application process, avoid the pond area because the formula may be harmful for underwater species.

The insecticide formula does not clog the ground, therefore, you can proceed with the regular caring process for the plants after the insect treatment session. Spectracide residual effect can protect the garden for up to 2 months.

What we like

  • Fast-acting formula.
  • Treatment for insects nesting high above the ground.
  • Solution for critically infested garden.
  • Wide coverage of 64,000 square feet of lawn.
  • Residual effect lasts up to 2 months.

What can be improved?

  • Toxic ingredients for pets and underwater species.

Monterey Ready to Use Pesticide – Best for beneficial insects protection

Sale
Monterey LG 6338 Bacillus Thuringiensis (B.t.) Worm &...
889 Reviews
Monterey LG 6338 Bacillus Thuringiensis (B.t.) Worm &...
  • INSECT KILLER - This pest control is designed for use on...
  • FOLIAGE PROTECTOR - This insecticide is designed for use on...
  • SAFE FOR EARTHWORMS & BEES - When used as directed, Monterey...

Features

Monterey organic formula works on insects through leaves and vegetables digestion.

When the garden has been treated, Monterey requires some time to wait for the insects to feed on the plants, then the formula will start to take effect. The treatment process can take up to one week to eliminate the bugs completely.

This feature requires time and patience, but the residual effect can protect the plants in the long run.

Monterey products come with a detailed instruction manual to ensure safe usage. You can apply Monterey with a flexible duration: before, or even on the day of harvest.

What we like

  • Certified organic formula.
  • Durable effect.
  • Ecosystem balance protection.
  • Foliage protection.
  • Treatment for ornamental and edible plants.

What can be improved?

  • Slow-acting formula.
  • The formula may be too mild for plants with bugs residing in groups.

Safari Sprayable Systemic Insecticide – Best for indoors pest control

Safari 20SG Sprayable Systemic Insecticide - 12 ounce jug
  • 12 OZ BOTTLE
  • Not for Sale to: CT, MA, NY, PR
  • ACTIVE INGREDIENT: Dinotefuran 20%

Features

With the active ingredient Dinotefuran accounts for 20% of the formula, Safari insecticide can work directly on stimulating the insects’ nerves without digestion.

Safari formula spreads from the root up to other parts of the plant to exterminate insects completely; and can also treat fungus along the way.

Thanks to the safe ingredients in the formula, you can use Safari for both outdoor and indoor gardens.

On the contrary, the price for Safari can be quite high for the liquid insecticide category.

What we like

  • Active ingredients.
  • Easy to follow instruction manual.
  • Solution for fungus.
  • Treatment for indoor and outdoor gardens.
  • Easy to maintain.

What can be improved?

  • Slow-acting formula.
  • Expensive price.

Conclusion

Overall, the best insecticide for vegetable gardens is Ortho Fire Ant Killer. It is a budget-friendly, effective long-term treatment for various types of insects.

When looking for an insecticide, the key point is the types of insects in your garden. As for the formula, an insecticide with high chemicals is suitable for critical problems, while organic formula may require some time to take effect.

Last update on 2021-04-14 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Share:

Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on pinterest
Share on linkedin
Share on reddit
Share on pocket

Leave a Comment

Jill Sandy

Jill Sandy

Jill is a sustainable focus gardener. She loves decorating her home backyard with beautiful landscape design and creative garden care techniques she develops herself. You can reach her at jill.sandy@constantdelights.com

Chanh Ho (MD, MPH)

Chanh Ho (MD, MPH)

Chanh is our Head of Medical Review. He is a research physician at Oxford University Clinical Research Unit. After accomplishing the program of level 1 sub-specialty in Pediatrics, he was awarded the Chevening Scholarship for his Master’s degree of Public Health in the University of Edinburgh in 2019

Most Popular