Home Remedies

Monday, April 6, 2009

For me there is nothing as aggravating in the summertime as flies and other insectsbuzzing around my head, and Lilly's, when trying to have a nice pleasureable trail ride. And I also personally think it's the worst to go out in the pasture and see my precious brumby with flies clinging to her eyes like little yucky barnacles. Oh I do hate that, even if she doesn't seem to mind at all. It's the one downside of summer: the mighty bug!

Last summer, aside from putting the cutest little fly bonnet on LIlly, I did use the hard-core stuff from the tack shop and catalogs. But I also began to dabble in homemade recipes for bug repellant. My favorite ones contained lots of essential oils--mostly lavender and eucalyptus--and some water, usually a dash of dish soap, and then, pew!, apple cider vinegar. Bill (or anyone else in the barn, for that matter) will tell you that most of my homemade bug sprays stank. Literally! They smelled very bad. However, I think they worked pretty well. For a short period of time anyway...like maybe two or three hours. I also tried a natural marigold spray that Bill found at the farmer's supply store. This also worked pretty well in my experience, and it didn't smell bad per se, but it did smell very sweet and flowery, and unfortunately after an hour or so of such a heavy, sweet and flowery smell, there was at least one time I thought I might pass out in the summer heat, under the fumes of marigold! There were two things that I remember working excellently last year, however. One was a bug strip that Bill stuck to the back of his helmet. It worked by attracting bugs to the strip (rather than to a warm body) and when they landed on it, got trapped there. Cruel, but effective. The second thing I used was a bug lotion for people from the natural shelf. It is called Insect Armor (or something similiar) and is made by a company called All Terrain. Because it is for people, the stuff costs an arm and a leg to put on a horse. But I just used it on Lilly's head, and it worked like a charm. I figured I'd use the toxic stuff down on her legs, and the purer stuff up by her brain and eyes. Plus, it smells pretty good.

I'm planning to get another camera this week, so I'm hoping in a few days to have some more real photos to post. Until then, happy trails!

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