Growing healthy plants using natural pesticides
Category: Food Production
Climate Region: Arid | Temperate | Tropical
State or Territory: ACT | NSW | NT | QLD | SA | TAS | VIC | WA
Age Range: 7-13


The school garden classes were amongst Beth’s favourite. It felt great to be outside where she can chat with her friends and get her hands dirty. Beth and her friends were responsible for the rockmelons which grew well in their subtropical climate. While watering and weeding, Beth noticed lots of tiny insects on the new leaves of the rockmelon plants. There were too many to remove by hand! Beth and her friends Hayley and Eliza started researching for pest species that feed on rockmelons, and were able to identify the tiny insects as aphids. The girls agreed to prepare a natural pesticide to manage these aphids to they didn’t spoil the rockmelon crop they had been tending to for close to three months.


Gardening and growing healthy plants is a priority for Junior Landcarers as plants are vulnerable to pests and diseases. Creating the right conditions for growth and investing in good care strategies can help keep them healthy in the long term. Using natural pesticides to treating plant pests along with regular monitoring can help. These pesticides are made from naturally occurring ingredients, they rid the plants of pests, limit diseases whilst keeping the plants, soil, wildlife, water sources and beneficial insects free from any unpleasant chemicals or negative environmental impacts.


For children to:
• understand how to cultivate healthy plants using organic gardening methods
• look to natural ingredients as a solution to ridding plants of unwanted pests and diseases
• know how to make a natural pesticide and evaluate the results of using it.


Application of pesticides is generally weather dependent. It is best to apply the spray in non-windy conditions so as to prevent drift. Certain pests will be present in specific seasons and regions.

[types field='video-activity-embed' item='$current_page'][/types]

We value your feedback

When you have finished this learning activity, please tell us what you think with our survey.
Your feedback will help Landcare Australia improve the activities in the Junior Landcare Learning Centre.

Share your Junior Landcare photos with us!

Please submit your Junior Landcare photos using this form.
  • Hidden
  • Hidden
  • Accepted file types: jpg, png, gif, Max. file size: 5 MB.
    Maximum file size allowed is 2MB. All photos submitted will be reviewed before they are published on our website.

Why not try one of our other Junior Landcare learning activities?

Propagating from fruit and vegetable scraps

Food Production

Making a large wicking bed

Food Production

Making a small wicking bed

Food Production

Creating a food garden: harvesting

Food Production