As you know, neem oil is one of the “effective weapons” of most gardeners. It is an all-natural treatment to combat all types of indoor pests and even fungal diseases. Therefore, neem oil is considered one of the indispensable products for gardeners to protect the health of plants. The same goes for the fig tree, it is a plant with a strong vitality and thick and hard leaves. So fig trees can fight against pests and insects naturally.
However, for added protection, many gardeners have used neem oil to coat fig leaves. How to use neem oil on fiddle leaf fig. How to achieve the highest efficiency? In this article, I will give you all the information about the benefits and how to use neem oil safely and effectively.
Why Should You Use Neem Oil On Fig Leaves?
Before answering why you should use neem oil on fig leaves, you should learn about the composition of neem oil and how this oil works against insects and fungal diseases.
What Is Neem Oil?
The scientific name of the neem tree is Azadirachta indica A. Juss, also known as the margosa tree. Neem oil is obtained from the seeds of the neem tree and it is used in all kinds of products for the prevention and control of diseases. Some common household products that contain ingredients of neem oil include toothpaste and soap. When unprocessed, pure neem oil has a garlic odor and a dark yellow color.
In India, people have used neem oil as a natural pesticide in the agricultural field. This is because the kernel (and pure pressed oil) of the neem tree contains many effective ingredients and has anti-fungal and insecticidal properties such as azadirachtin. This substance will destroy the hormones and behavior of insects, causing them to die.
In particular, neem oil leaves no toxic buildup or residue on the leaves and is completely biodegradable in the natural environment. Therefore, it has become an effective alternative to chemical pesticides and synthetic fungicides.
The Uses Of Neem Oil On Fig Leaves
As you know, most people use neem oil as an all-natural insecticide on fig leaves and other plants to kill insects and fungal diseases. Here are some effective uses of neem oil in insect prevention and treatment of fungal diseases for fig trees.
Pesticides: Neem oil acts as a natural insecticide due to its containing the active ingredient azadirachtin. This substance has the effect of disrupting the hormones of insects, reducing their ability to eat and reproduce, thereby shortening the life cycle of insects. Therefore, you cannot use neem oil as a medicine to kill insects immediately like a chemical insecticide. However, it will kill insects slowly and prevent new generations of insects when the eggs hatch.
The best thing about using neem oil in agriculture is that it only kills the insects that are harmful to fig trees, not the beneficial ones. So you can still use ladybugs to kill other harmful insects on fig trees without worrying about their safety.
Fungicides: Pure neem oil is also used by many gardeners as a natural fungicide. Because it has an effective effect against diseases such as rust, powdery mildew, black spot, and brown spot… caused by fungi. However, neem oil also cannot kill fungal diseases quickly. Instead, it will attack and inhibit the formation and attack of fungi.
How To Use Neem Oil On Fiddle Leaf Fig
To use neem oil in preventing and killing insects, you just need to prepare water, a spray bottle, neem oil, and soap. This process is extremely simple and easy, but you still need to follow a few principles below.
Cleaning Fig Leaves
Before using neem oil to apply or spray on the leaves, you need to clean both sides of the fig leaves with water or a damp cloth. This is because fig leaves are often hairy, so it is an ideal environment to trap residue, dirt, and airborne debris. To achieve the best effect, you need to clean the fig leaves and then use neem oil. Because if neem oil mixes with dirt, it becomes a stain that is harder to clean than usual. You should use a clean, soft cloth to wipe the leaves, or even use a little water and non-detergent dish soap if the fig leaves are very dirty.
Spray Neem Oil On Fig Leaves
You need to dilute the neem oil with water and maybe add a little soap to emulsify the mixture. You should never apply neem oil directly to the leaves because the concentrated neem oil can burn the fig leaves quickly. Especially if your fig tree is exposed to direct sunlight after applying neem oil.
Alternatively, you can also use a spray bottle to spray neem oil onto fig leaves. You can use the following recipe to make a homemade spray with neem oil. Mix a tablespoon or two of neem oil into a gallon of water and you can add a tablespoon or two of soap. Shake the spray bottle several times to mix the neem oil, water, and soap.
When spraying neem oil mixture on fig leaves, you should bring them outside because neem oil has a bad smell. You should spray neem oil on fig trees from top to bottom several times. Be sure to spray both the tops and sides of the leaves, stems and branches. Leave the potted plants outside to let the leaves dry and move them indoors and out of direct sunlight for several hours.
Wipe Fig Leaves With Neem Oil
You can also wipe the fig leaves with a solution of neem oil to kill the insects and prevent their attack. However, you should use gloves to avoid direct contact with neem oil because your skin can be slightly irritated.
You should use a soft, clean rag and dip it in the neem oil solution. Use that towel to wipe both sides of the leaf. You should regularly wet a towel to absorb the neem oil solution when cleaning the new leaves. Do not wipe fig leaves when the towel is dry or has run out of neem oil solution.
Frequently Asked Questions About Neem Oil
Here are some of the most common questions about neem oil that you can easily find on horticultural forums lately.
How Many Times A Day Should I Spray?
If you are using neem oil to kill insect attacks or fungal diseases, you should spray it once a week to prevent eggs from hatching. If you’re using a neem oil spray as a precaution, spray it every few weeks or once a month to prevent insect infestation.
Is Neem Oil Safe For Plants?
In general, neem oil is safe for plants and so are fig trees. However, you should not spray plants with neem oil on hot days because it can burn the fig leaves. Ideally, you should spray the neem oil solution on fig trees in the morning when the sun is warm and gentle.
Is Neem Oil Safe For Pets?
Pure neem oil can cause eye, skin, and stomach irritation if you come into direct contact. Therefore, you should avoid letting pets touch or swallow pure neem oil because it will be harmful to the health of pets.
However, neem oil leaves no toxic buildup on fig leaves as it dries and decomposes. It is harmless to wildlife and beneficial to plants in liquid form. Therefore, neem oil has become a highly effective natural insecticide. In particular, neem oil has a garlic smell, so you should spray this solution on fig trees outside instead of indoors.
Is Neem Oil Organic?
Neem oil is an all-natural and highly effective insecticide. It is very useful for gardeners to destroy and prevent pests. The Indians have used neem oil for thousands of years to protect plants from insects and fungal diseases. In particular, neem oil has also become more popular because it tends to limit chemical pesticides and be environmentally friendly.
Which Neem Oil Is Better?
Cold-pressed neem oil is a little more effective and plant-based than conventional chemically extracted neem oil. Because it does not contain chemical solvents and has a higher content of azadirachtin. So cold pressed neem oil can increase the effect better.
Neem oil is one of the highly effective natural insecticides for the treatment and prevention of insect and fungal diseases. This oil does not create an excess residue on the leaves, so it kills harmful insects but does not affect beneficial insects.
You can dilute neem oil with water and a little soap to spray on plants. Do not use pure neem oil as it can burn the leaves of fig trees, especially under strong sunlight. If you are in the process of killing pests, spray neem oil once a week or once a month to prevent insect eggs.