Diatomaceous Earth



Diatomaceous Earth (DE) is made from fossilized water plants and is a natural occurring siliceous sedimentary mineral compound from the remains of algae-like plants called diatom. These plants have been part of the earth’s ecology system dating back to prehistoric times.

As a result of fossilization, the diatoms left are called diatomite. These diatoms are mined and ground up to make a powder that has a look and a feel much like talcum powder.

Diatomaceous Earth may be used as a barrier to control pests: adult flea beetles, sawfly, coddling moth, twig borer, thrips, mites, cockroach, slugs, snails, aphids, earwigs, silverfish, and ants. It can be used for bedbugs, cabbage root flies, carrot root flies, fleas, pillbugs, ticks and is helpful in dealing with fungus gnats.

How Does Diatomaceous Earth work?

Though diatomaceous earth is considered a pesticide under the Pest Control Act, its effectiveness is actually mechanical. As an insect or bug treads across the powder, the tiny barbed cylinders penetrate the waxy coating that covers the insect’s body. This creates wounds that let body fluid out. The porous nature of the powder also makes it absorbent. This means diatomaceous earth works in two ways, both injuring the pest and drawing out fluid to dry and kill the insect. Death does not happen on contact, but over a short period of time. If left undisturbed, diatomaceous earth can be effective within 24 hours, though better results are usually apparent after five days.

Silica: Bio-Available

The silica content of diatomaceous earth is absorbed into plant tissue and helps improve plant structure and resistance to pests and disease. Sources of Silicon-rich minerals are abundantly available, yet researchers have found that only particular types of silicon can be absorbed by the plant. This is why sand and alumina silicates do not offer any plant health benefits. 


  • Our Diatomaceous Earth is a raw and untreated product. It is non-toxic.
  • Food Grade
  • Natural source of silica - 100% organic
  • Insect control - Does not harm earth worms
  • Protects against Drought - holds a lot of water
  • Decreases soil salinity by diluting sodium content
  • Minimizes soil leaching - reduces nutrient leach from overwatering/heavy rain.
  • Encourages beneficial microbial soil activity

Benefits of Bio-available Silica:

  • Increased plant health
  • Greater yield
  • Natural insect control
  • Reduced abiotic and biotic plant stress



  • Mineralogical: Diatomite–Essentially Silicon
  • Food Grade
  • Type: Natural 
  • PH, (10% slurry): 5.0 - 10.0 pH
  • Max. Moisture Content, Wt: <4.0%
    • Average analysis results: 3%
  • Screen (325) Mesh retained (%): <3%
    • Average analysis results: 1%
  • Screen (140) Mesh retained (%): <0.2%
    • Average analysis results: 0.0%



How to use

5ml = 1 teaspoon | 15ml = 1 Tablespoon | 240ml = 1 Cup

Organic Amendment

 Soil Mix

  • Dosage:
    • 1-2ml DE per 1L substrate
    • 30-60ml DE per 30L substrate
  • Frequency: When mixing/revitalizing a substrate
  • Application: 
    • Get a container or set a tarp on the ground
    • Add the substrate, DE and other organic soil amendments
    • Mix well and water lightly
    • Cover the soil to avoid pests and keep soil from drying out
    • Let the soil sit for approx. 2 months before use

Top Dressing

  • Dosage:
    • 1-2ml DE per 1L substrate
    • 30-60ml DE per 30L substrate
  • Frequency: Apply twice per season for outdoor and once per cycle for indoor
  • Application: 
    • Evenly distributed on top of the substrate
    • Apply in dry environments to have bonus of insecticide effect



Outdoor Gardens & Flower Beds

  • Dosage: 240ml - 480ml DE per 1m2 of garden space
  • Frequency: Applied once per season
  • Application: Evenly distributed on top of the beds

Compost Heap

  • Dosage: Use approx. 1kg-2kg DE per m³
  • Not more than 2% of total volume
  • Reduces smell from compost heap

Potted House Plants

  • Dosage: 30-75ml DE per 5L of soil
  • Frequency: Applied once per year
  • Application: Evenly distributed on top of the substrate


    As a Natural Mechanical Pesticide

    • When plant leaves are dry with a forecast of good weather dust under the leaves, on the stem, lower leaves and directly onto infestations
    • Create a solid ring of DE on the substrate - not have any gaps for pests to sneak through
    • Apply in dry conditions & reapply after it rains
    • Aphids & Spider Mites - Dust under the leaves and directly into infestations of aphids. Also apply on the top layer of the soil and stem.

    • In the Greenhouse - Sprinkle a perimeter barrier of DE around seedling trays for pill bugs and around the base of small plants to protect against earwigs.


    1L of Diatomaceous Earth (approx. 250g)


    Helpful tips: 

    • Check for good weather forecast. DE, as an insecticide, is mechanical in effect, thus it is far less effective when wet or to thinly applied. It clumps together when wet, re-application will be necessary if it rains.
    • Caution: DE does not discriminate between pests and beneficial insects. Ladybugs, green lacewings, bees, and other "good guys" can also be killed by DE if they come into contact with it. For this reason, we recommend using DE with discretion on and around plants that beneficial insects may frequently visit.
    • Care should be taken when using DE. We recommend you wear a dust mask, eye protection and gloves. While it is non toxic - the tiny particles are harmful if inhaled. Always wash hands after use.
    • Dosages can vary depending on existing soil and environmental conditions.
    • Do not apply directly onto flowers; this will cause damage and stress.
    • If you are buying from other sources use only untreated or food grade DE for agriculture. Pool filtered DE is chemically treated and is poisonous.



    For placement of large orders contact us at: office@greenhouston.co.za