Neem Oil & its Uses
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Neem oil is derived by pressing the seed kernels of the neem tree. It is very bitter with a garlic/sulfur smell. A single seed may contain up to 50 percent oil by weight. Neem oil is an excellent moisturizing oil and contains various compounds that have insecticidal and medicinal properties. It is used in making shampoos, toothpaste, soaps, cosmetics, mosquito repellants, creams and lotions, pet products like pet shampoo, etc. It also contains vitamin E, other essential amino acids and some percentages of fatty acids. Neem oil is used for treating many skin diseases viz. eczema, psoriasis, skin allergies, etc. and is being studied for making contraceptives in India. A compound found in Neem Oil and neem leaves extract- 'Salannin', has been proven to be safer but more effective insect repellant than DEET. Neem provides protection from not only mosquitoes, but also from biting flies, sand fleas and ticks.
Neem oil has been used for hundreds of years in
controlling plant pests and diseases. Many researches have shown that the spray solution of
neem oil helps to control common pests like white flies, aphids, scales, mealy bugs, spider mites, locusts,
thrips, and Japanese beetles, etc. Neem oil also works as a fungicide and helps
control powdery mildew. Some people have also experienced good results with neem
oil spray on black spot. Orchid owners use pure
neem oil spray to control pests
like mealybugs, spidermites, etc. One of the main ingredients in neem seed oil is
Azadirachtin that works as an insect growth regulator, thus preventing the larval stage to molt into an adult. As neem is very bitter in
taste, it also works as an antifeedant thus making the leaves sprayed with it very distasteful for the bugs to
eat, and the bugs choose to starve themselves than eat the leaves treated with
neem. Neem oil is bio-degradable and has proven to be non-toxic to mammals, birds, bees or
earthworms. It is biodegradable and breaks down easily and quickly. Neem
has also proven to be not harmful to adult beneficial insects, since it primarily affects only
plant sap-sucking insects, which feed upon the treated plants. However it is
recommended that care
should be taken not to spray neem oil solution when honey bees and the larvae of
beneficials like ladybugs, etc. are present. Neem oil spray like any
other oil spray can also burn leaves if sprayed in sun.
There are several products registered in the U.S. containing azadirachtin and Hydrophobic Extract of neem oil.
How to use 100% pure cold-pressed Neem Oil:
Recommended ratio for making spray solution: mix 1 teaspoon pure neem oil in a quart of warm water and 1/4 tsp. liquid dishwashing soap (non-antibacterial, mild soap e.g. ivory). Shake it well to mix properly. Quantity of neem oil can be increased proportionately for making spray in larger quantities.
Neem oil can be added to regular shampoo for controlling itchy scalp and dandruff.
For pets, neem oil can be added to pet shampoo to kill ticks and fleas or the area where the pets usually use can be treated with neem oil spray.
Store neem oil in a cool dark place, away from sunlight. In case neem oil solidifies due to low temperatures, put the bottle in warm water (below 95 degree F) to liquefy. Putting the bottle in very hot water may reduce the effectiveness of oil.
For more detailed information on Neem Oil and its uses, please visit www.neemfoundation.org and also see some great articles on our Related Links page.
Caution: Pure neem oil is for external use only. Test a small area before using neem oil.
Disclaimer: The above suggestions are given based on various studies and experiences of neem users around the world. We do-not guarantee or claim that pure neem oil will work in any or all of the situations mentioned above. These are merely historic uses of neem oil and the information has been put together from the various published media and internet. As with any natural product, use only as needed and discontinue use if any problem is experienced. Neem oil sold by Organeem LLC is pure unformulated neem oil and is not registered by the EPA as a pesticide or insecticide. It has also not been registered by the FDA for treating or curing any disease or for any specific herbal use.
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