Tuesday, July 5, 2016

MWM: Chiggers and Skeeters and Pests, oh my!

In the States, this time of year can be quite a challenge due to extreme heat, grass and weed allergies, and of course, those pesky bugs intent on ruining the cook-out!  Dorothy sounded at her wit’s end when she posed the following question during this week’s Mondays With Marge.
Dorothy: Help! My yard is Chigger* Central and I am being eaten alive every time I work in the garden or gather wild edibles. What is the BEST, most potent essential oil I should add to my repellent to keep those buggers off me? The only other critter driving me crazy is the biting fly, so if you have suggestions for keep that one off me I would consider it a bonus.
*(Note: Biting flies can be common in New England, Michigan, Minnesota, Wisconsin, and other states during the summer months. Chiggers, often called Harvest Mites in the UK, are prevalent in the Southeastern United States in early summer. These teeny tiny red “bugs” are related to the tick family and burrow under the skin causing intense itching.)  
Marge: Thanks for asking this here, Dorothy... this way other folks can benefit!  Okay, we are currently playing with two oils, BOTH have NO safety warnings, no contraindications, so no 'avoid with toddlers, avoid during pregnancy, etc. Based on everything we know they would be safe in "normal aromatherapy" topical application.

Buddha Wood CO2, according to our Australian mentor, Mark Webb, effectively kills bed bugs. It is a known insecticide and repellent. Mark Webb states that the eremophilone content of Buddha Wood makes it effective at repelling mosquitoes, fleas, ticks, and bedbugs, and that it has very low toxicity. (I'll be traveling again in Oct., staying in two hotels...did he say BEDBUGS...yes he did!) ;) Okay, that's one. 

Now, NEROLINA. There is anecdotal evidence that it is a miticide, and it might be useful in a blend to combat head lice. Many Australian sources recommend adding it to a shampoo for “children's hair
"Children's Hair Problems"
problems.” "Children's HAIR problems,” ahem...ah yes...okay. Our Michelle, in production (who probably poured the oils you are ordering), has two young boys, who have battled "children's hair problems,” bug bites, you name it. And the big old trees they play under in her yard ARE (as Dorothy said) Chigger Central.

Our experimental solution? We mixed up a blend of Nerolina and Buddhawood CO2. I'm not sure the proportions. MORE Nerolina than Buddha wood...it doesn't smell like an insecticide...doesn't smell like our Skeeterbeater blend...but she realized that her boys had NOT had a chigger bite in... several days. This is a RECORD for them! I think she put it in Aloe Gel. So for repelling chiggers, this combination seems to work. I am hoping to find out that it keeps us safe from bedbugs and from head lice and from 'other stuff.’  I think adding it to a child's shampoo would be a wonderful idea.
We are not selling the blend yet—still tinkering. I'm thinking since Kunzea Ambigua's common name (or one of them) is Spring Tick Bush...perhaps we should add a shot of THAT as well (although maybe they called it that because it ATTRACTED ticks? I don't know!!!) At any rate...
OH, and for the already existing Chigger bites, have you tried our After the Bite blend, on the website? I think it's on sale during June, which is quickly coming to a close! So thanks for asking, Dorothy!
If you have a question you would like to ask Marge, keep in mind no aromatherapy question is out of bounds.  We want to help educate and inform everyone from the newbie, to the expert!  And you never know how many others are actually wondering about the very same question as you!  Monday’s With Marge is live each Monday night in our Facebook community at 8:00 p.m. CDT. 

No comments: