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Wednesday, October 14, 2015

- A Reasonably Pest Free Summer - Natural Solutions

I am happy to report that as a result of finding some great new products at the Natural Products Expo West 2015 (and some old faithful products from years past), we were able to enjoy a reasonably pest free summer at Eco Family News.

One of the most impressive company’s at Expo West this past March was Earth-Kind, an all natural pest prevention line of products. Owner Kari Warberg-Block is a rock star in our book on all fronts … safe effective products, business, environment and education. She has created a line of all natural botanical products to prevent and/or remedy pesky ant, moth, spider, and rodent issues. I sat down with Kari at the show and walked away with great admiration and gratitude for what she has created. Obviously there are many others that feel the same way, as the company also won the 2015 Nexty “People’s Choice” award for best new product at the show, and Kari has since been interviewed by Forbe's Magazine.

An open letter of gratitude to owner Kari Walberg-Block from EFN:

Hi Kari,

I wanted to let you know just how in love I/we are with the air fresheners and moth and ant pouches! They are absolutely the best of their kind. Over the past few years the pantry and clothes moth epidemic in our Eco Family News home office has been monumental. We have used the non-toxic sticky traps (these just caught them and didn’t eliminate the problem), an essential oil strip (supposed natural from France, not) that created some respiratory issues with several of our team, as well as other various products, to no avail. Your moth pouch has literally handled the problem. They are gone. We’ve only seen one or two random baby moths in the past few months. That miracle was accomplished with only one pouch in a 1,500 sq foot space. Amazing! (We have since added two more to be absolutely sure they won’t return.)

Then on Saturday, one of the team had left some fruit in the sink and when I came back from lunch I saw an ant scout. I eliminated the source of attraction and put the pouch in the window sill, and not another ant in sight. We are so excited! We have battled the ants every summer for decades. I personally just placed an order for a case of each (ant/moth) to give as gifts.

In Gratitude ... EFN

More about Earth-Kind’s Stay Away® products:
Earth-Kind’s first product Cab Fresh® Stay Away Rodent®, was created out of the need to find a natural solution to her own rodent problem on her family’s farm in North Dakota. With so many animals and humans accidentally poisoned each year, she was hesitant to use toxic chemicals. Thankfully, with her knowledge and perseverance she was able to create an all-natural botanical solution, using only essential oils and plant fibers. Stay Away Rodent® made with Balsam Fir oil is the first registered pesticide to meet EPA standards for efficacy, which means it’s strong and effective enough for use by a professional, yet safe enough to be use at home by a consumer because everything inside is simply made from a food source. With 50% of the world struggling with a rodent problem, this product is essential and has been proven to work (and offered with a 100% guarantee.)

How the pouches work …
Ants: The Ant pouch emits an odor that repels ants, yet is pleasant to people. Most ants recognize the smell and stay away. However, if an ant travels into the vicinity of the pouch and the vapor gets on them, they will be rejected when they try to return to the colony. It is also important to note that Ants will usually take advantage of you being away on vacation by traveling through the dry sink drains into your house and take over the kitchen or bathroom areas … not a pleasant welcoming committee when you return home. All you have to do is leave a pouch near the sink areas to keep your unwanted houseguests at bay.

Moths: The botanicals in this pouch were designed (and tested) most specifically for the clothing moth. Fortunately the moth won’t lay eggs in an area where they smell these pouches. If there are no eggs, consequently there are no larvae. The larvae are what eat the peptides from the skin particles left on the garment, which nourish them into moth-hood. Even though these pouches are best used preventatively, they worked miraculously for curing our infestation for both clothes and pantry moths.

Spiders: The smell of this pouch repels the insects that the spiders eat – food source gone, spiders gone. We have not seen one spider since we put a pouch in the office in July.

The company also offers fabulous air freshener pouches, and has developed a 100% plant based – sunflower, beets and flax – pouch pod (made in USA/North Dakota) to put any of the individual botanical pouches in to preserve the integrity of the products for up to four months.

Earth-Kind products are available online and in select home improvement stores. For more info about their products, sustainable practices, packaging, stewardship and 100% money back guarantee, visit

All Natural 100% DEET Free
Insect Repellents for Mosquitoes

Quantum™Health’s Buzz Away™ (original formula and extreme) and the Don’t Bite Me! Patch have always been two of EFN’s favorite natural mosquito and insect repelling solutions. As someone who is allergic to mosquito bites, I never go anywhere without a supply of Buzz Away™ towelettes, spray bottle, or combination repellant and sunscreen lotion, as well as a box of Don’t Bite Me! Patches, which are waterproof vitamin B1 patches that (are claimed to) last up to 36 hours. Neither of these products has ever let me down ... keeping me free of bug bites.

Quantum™ also makes Sting Soothe in the event you didn't use the above products in a timely manner, as well as Itch Nix® gel, a fast acting natural relief for bite itching, or the dreaded Poison Ivy and Poison Oak, just in case that camping trip or hike gets you into some itchy trouble. (Editor’s Note: This product also works great for itching related to chicken pox. When my daughter had chicken pox (all over her body) when she was 19-years-old, I made a spray bottle solution by combining water, a squirt of Itch Nix® and a few drops of lavender oil ... it was the only thing that gave her relief.)

Murphy’s Naturals Mosquito Sticks are another interesting product to help keep the mosquitoes away. These 100% DEET FREE sticks look like a big think green incense and are made from a unique fusion of sustainable bamboo, citronella, lemongrass and rosemary. Twelve sticks come in a tube and are said to offer the consumer 300% more active essential oil ingredients than comparable natural repellent products. Each stick lasts up to approximately two hous of burn time dependant on weather conditions.

I tried one of these sticks while barbequing in the back yard with great success. However, one problem we had with it was the ash embers that fall from the stick are as hot as charcoal and burned me more than once when I tried to move it while it was burning! CAUTION: Never leave theses sticks in an area where kids, animals or guests can touch it or move it, as it will burn them!

I also found that Murphy’s sticks worked well for keeping bees away while working in the garden … that was a welcomed benefit, as this year the bees seem to be a bit more aggressive in wanting to land on us humans in Southern California. 

We hope these products will make your life a little less buggy, and a lot more relaxed!


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