February 13, 2020

Jonah's Recipe: A Natural Pesticide Solution

Jonah Woira

Jonah Woira, Uganda’s FARM STEW Agricultural Leader, has discovered a recipe that will help to deter the current plague of locusts that is consuming Eastern African crops - and it is created by three simple ingredients you probably already have in your kitchen!

Why should FARM STEW get concerned about fighting locusts?

From the Biblical plagues of Egypt (EXODUS 10:4, 12, 13 & 14) to a major infestation in Madacasgar two years ago, locust swarms have caused chaos throughout history. Just one swarm can cover 20% of the land surface of the Earth, affecting the livelihood of 10% of the world’s population especially the poorpeasant farmers living in the sub-Saharan Africa by consuming up to 200 tonnes of vegetation per day. Understanding how swarms form and what can break them apart, then, is of great importance.

Our master plan is made up of two plans
1. Preventive plan
2. Control plan

Getting rid of locusts with Garlic

The natural repellent nature of garlic makes it a perfect tool for keeping locust and other sorts of pests
off plants. Garlic water is simple to make, cheaper and easy to administer. It can be used on vegetables
or on flowering plants. Below are several recipes that we can mix and help dispel the vermin and pests
from our farmer’s gardens. The heavy garlic smell dissipates quickly but is active enough to keep bugs

Improved garlic water recipe with hot pepper: (See the PDF above)

Chemical Control plan, our last resort

 If we consider using this method of locust control, we have to consider the following:
1. The chemical should be effective
2. Should have minimal impact on human health and environment

To kill locusts efficiently, five things are needed:
1. Information -on the location, life stage, size and density of infestations
2. Insecticides -appropriately chosen and applied safely;
3. Trained manpower;
4. Machines; an organization -to fund, implement and evaluate control methods and campaigns.

Insecticides effectiveness precautions
In order to kill locusts with insecticide they must either swallow it or get it on the outside of their bodies.
This is achieved by:
1. Stomach action: putting the insecticide on or in the food, either natural vegetation or a specially
prepared bait;
2. Contact action: by spraying the insecticide directly on to the locusts in such a form, often dissolved in oil,
that it will penetrate the cuticle.
3. As per government and FAO recommendations, we can go by a chemical called Cypermethrin which
contains organochlorines, organophosphates, carbamates and synthetic pyrethroids. The
organochlorines in it are highly persistent and include dieldrin and HCH. The insecticide is the most
favoured for locust control because of its efficacy, cost and persistence.
4. Cypermethrin is considered to be of such a low risk to man and the environment that’s why it is
prioritized over other insecticides.
5. However for effective insecticide application, a sprayer/spraying pump (knapsack sprayer) is used and
this can cost about $40.

Controlling locust swarms is no easy task. And the larger the swarms, the more difficult the task
becomes. Prevention, then, is likely the best medicine, but this requires keeping a very keen eye out.

FARM STEW Uganda and South Sudan are planning to equip our community leaders with a backpack sprayer ($40 each) and the natural garlic and chili recipe as a deterrent method. Our teams will also maintain sprayers in the office that can be deployed in the event of an invasion. We are also asking all to pray with us for the protection of the gardens and fields of FARM STEW Farmers.

We seek to raise $5000 to implement this plan immediately and ask you to consider donating today.

Posted by 
Jonah Woira