It’s that time of year again when you keep a bottle of DEET around and spray it on thick if you want to spend a nice evening by the grill. While there are some fantastic all-natural bug repellents on the market these days, sometimes we feel like we need all the help we can get.
Turns out, there are natural ways to repel mosquitoes AND avoid dousing yourself in bug spray. Here are some easy plants to include around your house this summer to help prevent the yearly onslaught of mosquitoes.
Mosquitoes can’t stand the scent of heavenly lavender, and neither can moths or flies. Pro tip: rub lavender on yourself to smell awful to mosquitoes. It works as a fantastic natural mosquito repellant and perfume.
Marigolds are easy to grow and look lovely. They emit an odor that repels mosquitoes but smells oh so nice to our human noses. Keep them in pots by the door to keep bugs away, and plant them on the edges of your garden to keep the critters and pests at bay.
3. Citronella grass
Sounds familiar, doesn’t it? Citronella is found in most all commercial bug repellents, from candles to torches to sprays. Citronella thrives in a variety of soils and is one of the easiest plants to grow.
According to a study conducted by Iowa State University, Catnip is ten times more effective at mosquito control than DEET. But we’re warning you: you might become the new hot spot for all the neighborhood cats!
Keep a pot of freshly growing basil on your picnic table so you can add it to your best homecooked meals AND keep mosquitoes away. Fun fact: essential oil from basil is toxic to mosquito larvae, so grow it around areas that get a lot of standing water or moisture.
Mint is a good all-around summer plant to keep around because its essential oils can help soothe bug bites.
Repelling mosquitoes is important not just for the itchiness they bring, but the diseases as well. Keeping away as many mosquitoes as possible reduces your risk for West Nile, Encephalitis, La Crosse Virus, and potentially more. To learn more about how to prevent mosquitoes on your property, visit the Ohio Department of Health’s page on Mosquito prevention.