Neem essential oil has many uses, most of which most of us are unaware. The oil is amazing for infections and many stomach related diseases. The oil is even known to cure acne and many other skin related chronic problems.
Neem oil is derived by pressing the seed kernels of the neem tree. It is very bitter with a garlic/sulfur smell. A single seed may contain up to 50 percent oil by weight. Neem oil is an excellent moisturizing oil and contains various compounds that have insecticidal and medicinal properties. It is used in making shampoos, toothpaste, soaps, cosmetics, mosquito repellants, creams and lotions, pet products like pet shampoo, etc.
It also contains vitamin E, other essential amino acids and some percentages of fatty acids. Neem oil is used for treating many skin diseases viz. eczema, psoriasis, skin allergies, etc. and is being studied for making contraceptives in India. A compound found in Neem Oil and neem leaves extract- ‘Salannin’, has been proven to be safer but more effective insect repellant than DEET. Neem provides protection from not only mosquitoes, but also from biting flies, sand fleas and ticks.
Neem oil has been used for hundreds of years in controlling plant pests and diseases. Many researches have shown that the spray solution of neem oil helps to control common pests like -
- White flies
- Mealy bugs
- Spider mites
- Japanese beetles
Neem oil also works as a fungicide and helps control powdery mildew. Some people have also experienced good results with neem oil spray on black spot. Orchid owners use pure neem oil spray to control pests like mealybugs, spidermites, etc. One of the main ingredients in neem seed oil is Azadirachtin that works as an insect growth regulator, thus preventing the larval stage to molt into an adult. As neem is very bitter in taste, it also works as an antifeedant thus making the leaves sprayed with it very distasteful for the bugs to eat, and the bugs choose to starve themselves than eat the leaves treated with neem.
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