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Posted: 3/19/2017 10:41:59 AM EST
It seems that from time to time, the good Lord gives us a gift that no human technology can surpass in the same field.

I've been doing research on pesticides since we have a problem with insects. Wasps, spiders, ants, silverfish, you name it. I came across Diatomaceous Earth (DE) and after a few days of heavy reading it seems food grade DE is the perfect solution.

Head lice? Dust hair thoroughly (protect eyes and lungs, it IS a silicate after all)
Fleas? Dust dog thoroughly.
Wasps? Mix DE with water, spray eaves, under fence stringers, under the BBQ, anywhere wasps like to chill. Let dry and wasps will no longer like to chill.
Spread on the yard from time to time to help control ants, beetles, and spiders.
Dust along walls and under shelving in the garage.
Spread along dark, hidden areas of the house.

From what I've read, it's awesome. It's safe. It works 100% as long as it's dry.

I simply haven't used it before, so no first hand experience. I have a young child, a dog, and a cat. While I'm no tree hugger, the lack of chemicals and toxins in food grade DE is certainly a selling point for me.

For those that have used it, what has been your experience with DE?
Link Posted: 3/19/2017 10:43:36 AM EST
Link Posted: 3/19/2017 10:46:27 AM EST
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Originally Posted By Wolfpack:
I've only used it in DE pool filters. I've heard of it as a pesticide. I wonder if it would repel rodents too....
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It doesn't hurt mammals at "normal" dosage.  If you lived in a pile of it, then it would be irritating but you aren't doing much to a rodent with it.
Link Posted: 3/19/2017 10:59:56 AM EST
[Last Edit: 3/19/2017 11:00:32 AM EST by GrimEReaper]
My friends 80yo dad was diagnosed with cancer 15+ years ago and doctors gave him up for dead. He had a native indian administer some DE and some kind of clay. I don't know a lot of details how. The mans alive and doing well for an 80 year old.
Link Posted: 3/19/2017 11:05:17 AM EST
Originally Posted By sweptvolume:

For those that have used it, what has been your experience with DE?
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more wives tales than anything else.
Link Posted: 3/19/2017 11:05:31 AM EST
You can eat the stuff and bugs will never develop an immunity to it. What's not to like? I've used it with great success.
Link Posted: 3/19/2017 11:06:22 AM EST
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Originally Posted By GrimEReaper:
My friends 80yo dad was diagnosed with cancer 15+ years ago and doctors gave him up for dead. He had a native indian administer some DE and some kind of clay. I don't know a lot of details how. The mans alive and doing well for an 80 year old.
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oh now it cures cancer


stuff like this is why I dont use it, always over exaggerated
Link Posted: 3/19/2017 11:11:36 AM EST
I buy it in 20lb bags. I spread it on the outside sides of my house with a puffer about every month in the spring, summer and fall. I add it to the anti-bug mix which I put on my yard twice a year.  I don't have any ground insect or termite issues.  However, I still have an ongoing barely holding on battle against carpenter bees and wasps.
Link Posted: 3/19/2017 11:15:31 AM EST
Gf bought huge bags and put around house and they're all up in the vacuum and electronics n shit.
Link Posted: 3/19/2017 11:28:34 AM EST
Diatoms 
Link Posted: 3/19/2017 12:11:13 PM EST
Also great for filtration and polishing. Diatoms are perhaps the most numerically abundant eukaryotic organisms on earth.
Link Posted: 3/19/2017 12:23:23 PM EST
[Last Edit: 3/19/2017 1:46:49 PM EST by Kitties-with-Sigs]
Link Posted: 3/19/2017 12:24:43 PM EST
Link Posted: 3/19/2017 1:00:06 PM EST
DE causes cancer...

Do not breathe it...
Link Posted: 3/19/2017 1:44:33 PM EST
Link Posted: 3/19/2017 1:47:35 PM EST
[Last Edit: 3/19/2017 1:48:13 PM EST by w9trb]
We used it commercially by the tons. Absolutely get a tight face mask before opening it up. It will do to your nose lining and lungs exactly what it does to bugs. The stuff will float in the air for a very long time, just because you don't see it as thick as a cloud, does not mean that you are not inhaling it.
Link Posted: 3/19/2017 1:47:58 PM EST
We spray it on pears to inhibit psylla from laying their eggs. It doesn't kill them it just makes them not want to land in the trees and lay eggs. Eventually it wears off and they lay their eggs. This is what we want because it makes them lay their eggs at one time giving us a distinct generation instead of a very spread out hatch that is harder to control later on.

It works good, very abrasive on our spray equipment.
Link Posted: 3/19/2017 1:53:24 PM EST
Link Posted: 3/19/2017 2:21:55 PM EST
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Originally Posted By TaylorWSO:
oh now it cures cancer


stuff like this is why I dont use it, always over exaggerated
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Originally Posted By TaylorWSO:
Originally Posted By GrimEReaper:
My friends 80yo dad was diagnosed with cancer 15+ years ago and doctors gave him up for dead. He had a native indian administer some DE and some kind of clay. I don't know a lot of details how. The mans alive and doing well for an 80 year old.
oh now it cures cancer


stuff like this is why I dont use it, always over exaggerated
I ignore the advice to eat it or use it to cure AIDS and stick with scientifically logical theories. Like how it's supposed to cut into bug's exoskeleton and between their joints and pull moisture from inside their bodies.
Link Posted: 3/19/2017 2:25:50 PM EST
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Originally Posted By Kitties-with-Sigs:
Links? Research? Reasons for stating this?

Not General Discussion. Back up your blanket statement, please.
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Originally Posted By Kitties-with-Sigs:
Originally Posted By ScopeEye:
DE causes cancer...

Do not breathe it...
Links? Research? Reasons for stating this?

Not General Discussion. Back up your blanket statement, please.
Crushed fossilized diatoms are by all intents a silicate. Silicates are known by science to cause lung and respiratory issues such as cancer. Same reason you wear a respirator when mixing thinset or grout.
Link Posted: 3/19/2017 2:54:04 PM EST
I have used DE for several years successfully eliminating fleas on my animals and in my house, when nothing else would work. (FWIW I have 2 outdoor/indoor cats and a dog.)

I also puff around the exterior of the house in the spring and a couple times over the summer to control spiders and other bugs in the garden.

My understanding is that the DE crystalline structures act as an abrasive on bugs and pests who have a hard exo-skeleton. The DE gets in their joints and basically tears them up.
Link Posted: 3/19/2017 4:05:35 PM EST
We use DE for grain storage, just like the big boys do. I forget what the commercial brand name is, but its just DE.

We use it for de-worming our chickens and animals. If the eggs come out of your chickens with shit on them, your chickens have worms. Mix in some DE in their feed, takes care of it.

It dries the living shit out of anything living, I'll tell you that. First time we used it, I made the mistake handling it with bare hands. I didn't know flesh could look that dried out on a living thing . I can see how it dries out insects in short order.

Going to try it this year against the hyper active fruit flies that are destroying our raspberries. Darn things lay eggs in just ripe or even pre-ripe berries. There is no current known organic treatment, so I am thinking of coating the ground around the berries with DE to kill the upcoming critters (they supposedly lay eggs in the soil under the stalks).

Amazing stuff for sure.
Link Posted: 3/19/2017 4:06:37 PM EST
We rented a house that had a hall closet as a pantry, but had carpeted floors. Somebody, (us maybe, but most likely the owner) had spilled flour and some bugs were in there pretty soon after we moved in. Had young kids and pets in the house, didn't want to spray permethrin, so we vacuumed really well then sprinkled DAE. Worked great.
Link Posted: 3/19/2017 5:26:37 PM EST
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Originally Posted By Rat_Patrol:
We use DE for grain storage, just like the big boys do. I forget what the commercial brand name is, but its just DE.

We use it for de-worming our chickens and animals. If the eggs come out of your chickens with shit on them, your chickens have worms. Mix in some DE in their feed, takes care of it.

It dries the living shit out of anything living, I'll tell you that. First time we used it, I made the mistake handling it with bare hands. I didn't know flesh could look that dried out on a living thing . I can see how it dries out insects in short order.

Going to try it this year against the hyper active fruit flies that are destroying our raspberries. Darn things lay eggs in just ripe or even pre-ripe berries. There is no current known organic treatment, so I am thinking of coating the ground around the berries with DE to kill the upcoming critters (they supposedly lay eggs in the soil under the stalks).

Amazing stuff for sure.
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If you have fruit flys try and find a product called gf 120. It's a spinosid in a molasses bait that you apply every 7 days. You just have to put a single strip on the bushes not spray the whole thing.

If it's spotted wing drosophila that is the problem your screwed. Only organic I know that will do it is entrust (a spinosid as well) and that is going to have to be applied every seven days as well. Drosophila don't eat the bait like a standard fruit fly will.
Link Posted: 3/19/2017 6:18:24 PM EST
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By GrimEReaper:
My friends 80yo dad was diagnosed with cancer 15+ years ago and doctors gave him up for dead. He had a native indian administer some DE and some kind of clay. I don't know a lot of details how. The mans alive and doing well for an 80 year old.
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Link Posted: 3/19/2017 6:32:21 PM EST
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Originally Posted By sweptvolume:
I ignore the advice to eat it or use it to cure AIDS and stick with scientifically logical theories. Like how it's supposed to cut into bug's exoskeleton and between their joints and pull moisture from inside their bodies.
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Originally Posted By sweptvolume:
Originally Posted By TaylorWSO:
Originally Posted By GrimEReaper:
My friends 80yo dad was diagnosed with cancer 15+ years ago and doctors gave him up for dead. He had a native indian administer some DE and some kind of clay. I don't know a lot of details how. The mans alive and doing well for an 80 year old.
oh now it cures cancer


stuff like this is why I dont use it, always over exaggerated
I ignore the advice to eat it or use it to cure AIDS and stick with scientifically logical theories. Like how it's supposed to cut into bug's exoskeleton and between their joints and pull moisture from inside their bodies.
It will prevent AIDS if used as a lubricant.
Link Posted: 3/19/2017 10:03:16 PM EST
Worked on fleas when our dog brought them into our carpeted house. Be careful when using it, as stated before, it kills bugs with it's sharp surfaces. Those surfaces will wreck your day if it gets in your eyes.
Link Posted: 3/21/2017 7:19:03 AM EST
We sprinkle it all in and around the garden beds, particularly the strawberry bed. Used to get slugs in the strawberry bed, no more. As others have stated, you don't want to breathe it or get it near your eyes, it is harsh stuff.
Link Posted: 3/21/2017 7:25:06 AM EST
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Originally Posted By Kitties-with-Sigs:

Do you have ACTUAL experience with it?
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yes

It doesn't work.

keeps the bugs out of feed=nope
keeps insects off/from porch/cabinets/etc nope

If it were so awesome then there wouldn't be any need for chem agents now would there???
Link Posted: 3/21/2017 11:09:57 AM EST
Link Posted: 3/21/2017 7:22:15 PM EST
I appreciate the responses. It's worth taking a crack at I reckon. When I get around to getting some I'll let you guys know if there's a change in the buggy population.
Link Posted: 3/21/2017 7:27:02 PM EST
Link Posted: 3/25/2017 11:16:02 AM EST
For garden use, is it something that requires reapplication after every rain, or just periodically throughout the growing season?
Link Posted: 3/25/2017 12:01:43 PM EST
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Originally Posted By Wight_Hat:
For garden use, is it something that requires reapplication after every rain, or just periodically throughout the growing season?
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After rain, since it washes the de away. Also periodically, whenever the concentration of de in the target application zone drops.
Link Posted: 3/25/2017 12:45:07 PM EST
The claims of its efficacy are not scientifically proven. It is well known though that it is a dessicant, which wards off small insects. However when wet it cannot possibly act as a dessicant, either outdoors or in the gut.

The claims that it will cause "death by a thousand cuts" are not substantiated. Even it's effects as a dessicant are probably highly overrated. If you have pets with lice and treat them with DE then I would expect some improvement, but not complete elimination of the bugs like you could achieve with Permethrin or Sevin dust.
Link Posted: 3/25/2017 12:57:59 PM EST
[Last Edit: 3/25/2017 1:01:18 PM EST by trails-end]
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Originally Posted By Wolfpack:
I've only used it in DE pool filters. I've heard of it as a pesticide. I wonder if it would repel rodents too....
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It might kill off any GI parasites the rodents have.


It works for fire ants. It takes 3-4 applications. Mix it into the mound. They will pile up the dead ones outside the mound, which is pretty cool and in a few days the mound is dead.

I don't know if it kills the queen or just causes them to relocate her. I always wonder that about any fire ant treatment.
Link Posted: 3/26/2017 2:16:21 PM EST
[Last Edit: 3/26/2017 2:20:26 PM EST by Skibane]
If it's as abrasive as folks claim it is, sounds like it would make a pretty decent media for polishing brass, rock tumbling, metal refinishing, etc.

Originally Posted By Seanquigley:
Diatoms
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I think I just had an acid flashback...
Link Posted: 3/26/2017 9:08:58 PM EST
[Last Edit: 4/3/2017 9:53:30 AM EST by Kitties-with-Sigs]
Link Posted: 3/26/2017 9:16:49 PM EST
Link Posted: 3/28/2017 6:51:34 PM EST
There are 2 types of diatomaceous earth.  The pool filter kind and the other kind found in the threads where people take a spoonful a day to cure "whatever", or add it to the chicken feed and other feeds and even their own food storage as well.  I am going to call the other kind the edible kind, but if you run a search on it and read what the bags say at tractor supply and feel it is ok for animals but not for humans, well you can call it what you want.

I use it around the house and if used outside then yeah it washes away after a rain and needs to be reapplied.  I have used it inside for fleas but vacumning it up afterwards is interesting cause I do feel it is something you do not want to inhale.  If I had it on linoleum or something then I would dampen it and wipe it up, no dust to worry about then.  But carpet is where I wind up using it because the places I rent all have carpet in the bedroom and now and then the dogs or cat or maybe even me track in fleas.  I blame the pets.  They can't argue about it.

For those that play on the tb2k website, a doomer site I guess and similar to this section of arfcom, there is a multi page thread on taking diatomaceous earth, about a teaspoonful in a big glass of water tends to be common I guess.  I have taken it before.  Never noticed anything like curing cancer but also not killed by cancer from taking it.  You make up your mind on it.  I tend to add it in whenever I get on some kind of vitamin kick or something or other.  Then I get over it after a bit. 

I even add it into the pet food sometimes.

Amazon has all kinds of sizes to try, pay attention to price by weight cause a big bag at your tractor supply might cost as much as a tiny bag from amazon from certain folks. 

I feel it works on hard bugs.  Then again I have had people tell me to dump a thing of baby powder on an ant mound and see what happens.

I use stuff like sevin dust and also have some pretty serious bug killer of some sort I got from amazon that is better than a lot of the common stuff at wally world and what not.

So I use multiple things each year and I do not want my pets inhaling the diatomaceous earth either.

Can't think of much else to add to this, someone can do a scientific blind test if they want.  I do not use sevin dust or other pesticides inside.

Oh yeah, I have used borax on hard sided bugs as well.  Heck, I once used a bottle of weird smelling liquid dish soap on an ant mound as well.  Either killed em or moved em out.
Link Posted: 3/30/2017 7:54:58 PM EST
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Originally Posted By Toddrick:
The claims of its efficacy are not scientifically proven. It is well known though that it is a dessicant, which wards off small insects. However when wet it cannot possibly act as a dessicant, either outdoors or in the gut.

The claims that it will cause "death by a thousand cuts" are not substantiated. Even it's effects as a dessicant are probably highly overrated. If you have pets with lice and treat them with DE then I would expect some improvement, but not complete elimination of the bugs like you could achieve with Permethrin or Sevin dust.
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We tried dusting our pygmy goats with DE for ticks, and I mean powdered doughnut. Didn't work. Took care of the lice on one goat that came with them though. I was told Sevin dust, and I have some, but one goat is nursing, so I'm afraid to use it on her and the baby. Ideas?
Link Posted: 3/30/2017 9:36:35 PM EST
[Last Edit: 3/30/2017 9:39:44 PM EST by Kitties-with-Sigs]
Link Posted: 4/2/2017 10:50:17 PM EST
I considered using seven dust on my pups at one point, keep in mind they are about 3 years old and the little one is 100lbs so pups is just what I call em.  Well, it is one of the 4 letter words I call em.

Anyway, in searching the net I ran across where sevin dust has a couple different concentrations and some people had problems with their dog drooling after using sevin dust on it.

Drooling went away but basically you want to be carefull with sevin dust is what I came away with.

I do use it for dusting around the house but I make sure no animals are down wind and going to be around where I put the dust and what not.  Well, other than insects needing killing.
Link Posted: 4/2/2017 11:53:22 PM EST
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Originally Posted By Currahee:
Also great for filtration and polishing. Diatoms are perhaps the most numerically abundant eukaryotic organisms on earth.
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Just what I was thinking!
Link Posted: 4/3/2017 10:19:49 AM EST
Link Posted: 4/17/2017 3:40:09 AM EST
I bought a 50lb bag of it from amazon a while back.  It works ok around the outside of my house.  It's not on par with chemicals, but that's fine.  I have tested it out on bugs in a jar because I was curious and it does kill faster than nothing.

It is a very fine powder though and they do recommend wearing a mask if you plan on using a bunch at once.
Link Posted: 4/17/2017 5:10:34 AM EST
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Originally Posted By Kitties-with-Sigs:


I have wondered about its efficacy for Squash Vine Borer (which I hate with a vengeance). Once the borer has gotten into the vine, of course, nothing to be done. But if the timing is right, I wondered about using this around the base of the vines instead of chemical pesticide. I'm sure it would take repeated applications, but pesticide does also.

Anybody tried this?
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Link Posted: 4/17/2017 9:02:58 AM EST
[Last Edit: 4/17/2017 9:03:33 AM EST by Rat_Patrol]
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Originally Posted By Oldgold:
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Originally Posted By Oldgold:
Originally Posted By Kitties-with-Sigs:


I have wondered about its efficacy for Squash Vine Borer (which I hate with a vengeance). Once the borer has gotten into the vine, of course, nothing to be done. But if the timing is right, I wondered about using this around the base of the vines instead of chemical pesticide. I'm sure it would take repeated applications, but pesticide does also.

Anybody tried this?
Perhaps, but only if you time it right.

The adult lays eggs next to the plant stem, so the way I see it, your only hope is to kill the egg then and there. If the egg is laid into DE, it will desiccate the crap out of it. Don't know if once the egg is dried out its dead or can come back to life, but it won't be doing much while being in DE 
Link Posted: 4/17/2017 9:59:26 AM EST
I've attempted to locate DE in the stores in my area a couple times in the last couple of years but I can't seem to turn any up. Is there a trade name or branding I can refer to when going to places like Lowes to find the stuff?
Link Posted: 4/17/2017 10:02:21 AM EST
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Originally Posted By Wangstang:
I've attempted to locate DE in the stores in my area a couple times in the last couple of years but I can't seem to turn any up. Is there a trade name or branding I can refer to when going to places like Lowes to find the stuff?
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Menards just has it as Diotomacious Earth in the garden section, with the organic insecticides/fertilizers
Link Posted: 4/17/2017 10:18:28 AM EST
Tractor supply keeps it in 2 spots.  They had some with the chicken feed and other "farm" animal stuff as I recall.  Lots of folks mix it in with the chicken feed and other feed for animals.

I guess during certain times of the year tractor supply expects to sell more of it, they had a stack of bags kind of tucked in a corner a bit.  Bags were maybe size of an 18 pack of beer to a case of beer, I forget to be honest.  I thought it was funny it was in 2 different spots about 20 ft from each other and the bags were sized differently.

I know amazon has it as well, watch shipping and read up on the reviews and companies.  If you want it for animal feed, no biggy.  If you do a lot of reading a whole lot of folks want it specified a certain way that it is ok for human consumption and this can cost more to find usually.

The city of knoxville has what I call a greeny weeny shop.  Earth fare or fair or something I think.  Lots of organic and good for earth stuff there, and yeah I pick on it but sometimes will get stuff there.  I know they also carry it.

I never looked at my local co-op, I am very very bad about forgetting about this local resource unless I am refilling propane tanks.  I always go there for propane but due to prices I usually cruise by the co-op that is several miles from where I live and find myself heading out for a 35+ minute drive to hit up something like a tractor supply.

Knoxville is an easy hour plus away and I hate crowds and cities so I have not been to that earth fair thing for a couple years I guess, so anyone local needs to check to make sure they are still in business before getting mad at me.

I have amazon prime and while not everything qualifies for free shipping and what not, amazon prime does cut way down on my city trips.
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