Using products with artificial chemicals to take care of plants, both as fertilizers and products to prevent and treat pests, is something dangerous both for plants and for our health, depending on the specific product. For this reason, more and more people are choosing to use natural products to care for plants, to help them grow and to prevent and treat their conditions.
This is the case of potassium soap, potassium soap or potash , which is an ideal natural product for plant care. We explain what it is and what it is for exactly, how to make potassium soap and the dose to use it correctly, among more details. Learn how to do it and use it and you will see that your plants will thank you.
What is potassium soap and what is it for?
The potash or potassium soap is a natural and organic product that is highly effective to kill pests in plants and help prevent them . This product is obtained thanks to the reaction of the saponification process that occurs when potassium hydroxide reacts with oil and water.
Basic composition of potassium soap
- Vegetable oil
- Potassium hydroxide (KOH)
What is potassium soap for?
As we have already mentioned, potassium soap is used to control pests in plants and improve their health. It is especially effective against aphids, mealybugs and whiteflies, but it also treats other types of pests on plants and even fungi.
How to make organic potassium soap step by step
If you want to learn how to make natural insecticide with potassium soap or, in other words, how to make organic potassium soap , don’t miss this simple step by step:
- Rubber gloves
- Safety glasses
- Kitchen scale
- Plastic, glass, or stainless steel containers for storing soap
Protections are necessary because while the reaction between potash and water occurs, it can damage the skin and sensitive parts such as the eyes if it splashes, so prevention is better. Then once finished it is no longer so aggressive, neither for us nor for the plants but for a variety of pests of these.
- 120 g vegetable oil (olive, sunflower, corn or canola oil)
- 20 g of potassium hydroxide (KOH)
- 20 g of water
How to make potassium soap step by step
- Put on the protections (glasses and gloves).
- Mix the potash with the water and stir, you will see that the temperature increases while the reaction takes place.
- In another bowl or container, pour the vegetable oil you have chosen and heat it in a water bath in a pot. Let it heat for a few minutes and then remove it from the heat.
- When the two are at room temperature, mix them together in one of the containers.
- You will see that it is acquiring a dark color. When it is more uniform, beat it with a mixer for 2 to 3 minutes.
- Let the whipped mixture rest for about 10 minutes and beat again for another 3 minutes, repeat as many times as you need until you get the texture you prefer. However, keep in mind that to use it later on your plants, you will have to mix it with water to dilute it.
- You can store it in the container you used to make the last mix if it has a lid, or store it in a plastic or glass bottle.
How to use potassium soap: the dose
Now, you just need to know how to use potassium soap on plants correctly. To be as effective as possible, it will be necessary to make sure to cover the entire affected plant with potassium soap and insist on the areas that are most affected by the pest to be eliminated. As soon as the insects or parasites that affect the plant come into contact with the organic potassium soap they will die.
The dose of potassium soap is highly variable and depends on many factors, from the type of pest to be eliminated to the affected plant species to be treated. The most common dose of potash for plants is 1% or 2% potassium soap in water.
The best way to use it once the dose has been prepared in the water is by spraying. Remember that as it is about moistening the entire plant, it is best to apply potassium soap on the plants when the sun does not hit them, to prevent them from burning.
To obtain the best results, it is recommended to apply the potassium soap for 15 days over 3 or 4 months .
Where to buy potassium or potash soap
You may want to try the commercial product before you start making potassium soap at home. If you are looking for where to buy potassium soap , we recommend that you go to stores specialized in gardening, horticulture and agriculture, or to stores such as large supermarkets where they may have a gardening section. In addition, you can find it both in physical stores and in online stores. The price of potassium soap is around € 10 for an average 1L bottle.
If you use the commercial product instead of the one prepared at home, remember to follow the instructions on the product packaging and those that the specialist of the store where you purchased it has commented to you.