Does Neem Oil Help with Rust?

Neem oil has so many benefits. The oil makes up almost 50 per cent of the neem seed, and it is very high in medicinal properties. One of the benefits is to remove rust on metals. It may seem too good to be true. But does neem oil help with rust?

Yes, neem oil helps with rust when used appropriately. Neem oil remains an effective solution to remove rust from leaves. Also, you can spray neem oil leaves stem and roots to stop the spread of rust in your garden.

Neem oil is useful for eradicating rust issues when used as a rust inhibitor. If the rusty object is small, you can put it into a zip lock bag, add enough neem oil to cover it, and then let it sit. For large objects, dip cheesecloth, cotton balls or a rag into the neem oil and wipe it over the surface of the metal to be treated. Allow the oil to soak in as long as possible before buffing it with a soft cloth.

Also, Neem oil controls rust in several ways. First, it leaves a natural barrier that coats the plant, preventing moisture and other conditions that favor rust formation.

Second, neem oil repels insects that carry rust spores from place to place and can spread the disease to healthy plants

Symptoms Of Rust In Leaves

While some rust types of leaves are obvious, many aren’t clear because it occurs in the root of the plant. Some symptoms of plant rust are:

Symptoms of Rust in Leaves

  • Change in Color: If your leaves change from its natural color to yellow-brown or gray, it might be due to rust. Although some leaves change color when they are ripe or due to weather conditions, many times it is caused by rust.
  • Stunted Growth: When your lily, iris or Snapdragon doesn’t grow as quickly as expected, it might rust. However, ensure you give it proper nutrition, water and humidity. If it doesn’t show signs of improvement, it is rusty.
  • Falling Branches: When plant leaves and branches fall arbitrarily without any reason, then it is losing its nutrients. Rust causes plants to lose their nutrients regularly.
  • Bad Fruits: Another symptom of rust in plants is when the fruits are sour and bad. Sometimes, rust happens internally, depriving plants from yielding fruits with vital nutrients. Once more than a fruit goes sour, check for root rust.
  • Reddish Blisters Called Pustules:  When you notice that your plant is suffering from pustules which can be seen around the undersides of your plants, it could be rust. These swellings are common rust symptoms among garden plants.
  • Leaf Distortion and Defoliation:  When leaves start experiencing a form of distortion and they don’t align with their normal quality, they have been infected. This type of defoliation occurs especially during rain and harmattan seasons.

How Does Neem Oil Work?

Neem oil can help suffocate or smother your plants’ insects. This is only possible with small insects like spiders and termites. Also, to kill off all types of insects, you need to add extra neem oil.

How Does Neem Oil Work


Neem oil has a chemical element called Azadirachtin which distorts insects’ bodily behavior, rendering them inactive and dieing slowly. Neem oil is a Non-toxic solution which takes an average of 3-5 days to work.

You are therefore advised to apply the neem oil solution early to all leaves’ surface, using spray. By applying it early, it makes your plants very unattractive to pests.

Benefits of Neem Oil

Benefits of Neem Oil

There are many advantages of using neem oil they include :

  • Controls All Insects: This is a great pesticide which can kill over 300 species of pest and insects. The most popular insects it kills are mites, aphids, caterpillars, white flies and leaf hoppers.
  • Useful for Controlling Lawn Grubs: Neem oil controls lawn grabs which serves as a habitat of Japanese beetles. These Japanese beetles are very dangerous to lawns and gardens. They regularly nibble on grass and harm turfs. It also stops these beetles from laying eggs and deters them from getting to roots.
  • Acts as a Reliable and Effective Pesticide: Neem oil has organic manure content which is a good source of fertilizers. It does this by controlling nematodes, grubs and white ants.
  • Good for Indoor Garden Use: Those with plants indoors need to exercise no fear of being overrun by aphids. It can safely be used indoors, just spray the plants surfaces to kill all pests.
  • Suitable for Greenhouse Use: Greenhouse provides a comfortable habitat for insects and mites. Using neem oil makes them very uncomfortable and destroys the insects in the greenhouse.
  • A Great Source of Fungicide: Neem oil can be used to destroy all algae and fungus on your plants. You can use it on all mildew and other popular fungal diseases like scab black spot, rust, tip blight anthracnose.
  • Works as a Bactericidal Solution: Neem oil can combat fire blight, which is a bacterial disease that harms leaves and makes them look burnt. For better results, spray neem oil when they are dormant.
  • Protects Your Vegetables from Fungus and Pest: It performs a dual purpose tile to protect your veggies from arthropod pests.
  • Pest that usually affect vegetables are whiteflies, corn earworm and tomato hornworm.

Side Effects of Neem Oil

Despite the seeming benefits of the neem oil, it comes with some drawbacks which include :

 Side Effects of Neem Oil

  • Burns Plants Foliage: Neem oil can destroy plants’ foliage, especially if they have just been transplanted. These transplanted plants have low immunity, which makes them susceptible to harm.
  • Burn the Leaves: When you apply too much neem oil on plants, it could burn the plants and make them change color. Sometimes, it even kills beneficial insects and pests.
  • Dangerous for Pregnant Women: For pregnant people, avoid letting it get to your skin or touching your mouth. There is a recent study in Sweden that neem oil can affect conception, especially in young couples.
  • Causes Skin Irritation: When applying neem oil, use gloves. There have been complaints about irritations and sores on skin.


All garden owners usually complain about pests, rust and plant fungus. Finding a reliable solution to get rid of rust is needed. Does neem oil help with rust?

Yes, neem oil is an effective Non-toxic solution which helps in preventing and removing rust from plants. Asides, neem oil, you can use some natural rust removal alternatives like soda, vinegar, and sulfuric dust.

Neem oil comes with many benefits when applied in the right dosage. Be careful not to use this oil when you are pregnant or with bare hands and it causes some harm.

Evan Cooper

Evan Cooper

Hi, I’m Evan Cooper, the founder and an editor of this site, Doesitrust. I’m a chemical engineer and working in a rust-eliminating paint manufacturing company. Besides this profession, I’m a researcher and blogger.

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