Updated: March 13, 2023

Earwigs are common household pests that are known for their pincer-like appendages and nocturnal behavior. These insects can be a nuisance when they infest homes and gardens, causing damage to plants and furniture. While there are several chemical pesticides available to control earwig infestation, many people are turning to natural remedies as a safer and more eco-friendly alternative. One such remedy is sweet orange, which is believed to repel earwigs. In this article, we will explore the effectiveness of sweet orange as an insect repellent and how to use it to control earwig infestation.

Earwigs and their behavior

Before delving into the use of sweet orange as a potential solution for earwig infestation, it is important to understand the behavior of these insects. Earwigs are small, reddish-brown insects that measure about 1 inch in length. They have a distinct pair of pincer-like appendages at the end of their abdomen that they use for defense and mating.

Earwigs are primarily nocturnal insects that hide in dark, damp places during the day. They are attracted to moist environments and can be found under rocks, debris, and in crevices around homes. Earwigs feed on a variety of plants, insects, and decaying matter. Although they do not pose a direct threat to humans or pets, they can cause damage to gardens and indoor plants.

Sweet orange as a potential solution to earwig infestation

Sweet orange is a citrus fruit that is commonly used for its flavor and aroma. However, it is also believed to have insect-repelling properties. Sweet orange contains compounds such as limonene and linalool that have been shown to repel insects like mosquitoes and ants.

According to some sources, sweet orange can also be effective in repelling earwigs. The scent of sweet orange is said to be unpleasant to earwigs, causing them to avoid areas where it is present.

How to use sweet orange to repel earwigs

There are several ways to use sweet orange to repel earwigs:

Making a sweet orange spray

To make a sweet orange spray, mix 10-15 drops of sweet orange essential oil with one cup of water in a spray bottle. Spray the mixture around areas where earwigs are likely to hide, such as under rocks or in crevices.

Using sweet orange essential oil

Another way to use sweet orange is by placing a few drops of the essential oil on cotton balls or cloth strips and placing them around the house or garden. This can help deter earwigs from entering your home or damaging your plants.

Other ways to use sweet orange to repel earwigs

Some people also recommend using sweet orange peels or juice as a natural repellent for earwigs. Simply place the peels or juice in areas where earwigs are likely to hide.

Other natural remedies for earwig infestation

While sweet orange may be effective in repelling earwigs, there are other natural remedies that can also be used:

Diatomaceous earth

Diatomaceous earth is a natural substance made from the fossilized remains of tiny aquatic organisms called diatoms. It works by dehydrating insects and can be sprinkled around areas where earwigs are likely to hide.

Neem oil

Neem oil is derived from the seeds of the neem tree and has insecticidal properties. It can be sprayed on plants or used as a soil drench to control earwig infestations.

Cedar oil

Cedar oil is extracted from cedar trees and has been shown to repel insects like ants and mosquitoes. It can also be effective in controlling earwig infestations when used as a spray or diffused in the air.


Earwig infestations can be a nuisance for homeowners and gardeners alike. While chemical pesticides may seem like an easy solution, they can have harmful effects on the environment and human health. Natural remedies like sweet orange, diatomaceous earth, neem oil, and cedar oil offer safer alternatives for controlling earwig infestations.

While more research is needed on the effectiveness of sweet orange specifically for controlling earwigs, it may be worth trying as part of an overall pest management plan. As with any natural remedy, it is important to follow instructions carefully and take necessary precautions when using them around pets or children. With these eco-friendly solutions at hand, you can keep your home and garden free from pesky earwigs without harming the environment or risking your health.