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Why You Should Put Toothpaste in Your Garden

A tube of toothpaste sits on the bathroom counter with a toothbrush.

When it comes to maintaining a lush and vibrant garden, there are plenty of gardening hacks that can help you achieve impressive results. One of the most surprising and lesser-known tricks is using toothpaste as a secret weapon. 

It turns out that mint toothpaste can be helpful in the battle against plant-bothering insects.

This everyday toiletry item helps brighten your smile but it can also play a significant role in banishing bugs and pestsFoliage-feasting pets that would otherwise devour your plants will be turned off by the smell of mint toothpaste

For this hack to work, it’s best to choose a mint toothpaste. With its mighty minty freshness, many bugs and garden pests will turn away from your garden instead of using it as their lunch spot.

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Insects like ants and aphids are notorious for devouring garden plants. By applying a thin layer of toothpaste around the stems and leaves of your plants, you create an effective barrier that repels these pests and discourages them from venturing further.

You can also use toothpaste against slugs and snails, which leave a trail of destruction in their wake as they munch on your leaves and flowers. Toothpaste acts as a natural deterrent for these slimy creatures, making them steer clear of the treated plants. 

It’s best to apply a thin layer of toothpaste either with a brush or by using your finger. Make sure to apply it gently so as not to damage your plants.

As a bonus, many toothpastes contain minerals like calcium which can benefit your plants’ health when used in moderation. The added nutrients can contribute to healthier and stronger plants, promoting better growth along with resilience against external stressors.

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Keep in mind that the toothpaste will lose its potency after rain or plant watering, so you’ll need to reapply every few days to maintain the minty effect.

As with all plant hacks, be mindful not to overdo it. While toothpaste can be a useful tool in your gardening arsenal, use it wisely and in moderation. Excessive toothpaste may interfere with your plant’s natural ability to absorb water and nutrients, causing potential harm. 

Avoid using toothpaste with added colorants or gels, as these might contain ingredients that could harm plants. Stick to basic, white, mint toothpaste without excessive additives for the best results. Consider testing a small area of your plant first to ensure there are no adverse reactions.

This quirky gardening hack can help you naturally deter pests, enhance plant health, and protect your garden from common threats. So, the next time you’re brushing your teeth, consider putting a little toothpaste aside for your garden—your plants will thank you for it!

Abbey Ryan Abbey Ryan
Abbey Ryan is a storyteller, preferably of stories in written form. Across the 5 years of her professional writing career, her work has been featured in The Chicago Tribune, Amazon, The Medical News Today, and more. When she's not writing (which is rare), she's likely traveling, painting, or on the hunt for a good snack. Read Full Bio »
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