Eight Plants That Repel Mosquitoes Naturally
Not a fan of dousing yourself or your yard with chemical-based bug repellents to keep mosquitos at bay? Then it’s time to supplement your landscaping with a few plants that repel mosquitoes naturally.
Which plants should you opt for? Take your pick from the list below:
- Lavender: Contains linalool, a mosquito-repelling terpene compound.
- Lemongrass: The source of citronella oil.
- Marigolds: These flowers are a potent source of pyrethrin.
- Mint: Mosquitos can’t stand menthol.
- Catnip: Your cat may love it, but mosquitos sure don’t!
- Lantana: You can extract essential oils and apply them to your skin as a natural topical repellent.
- American beautyberry: Another essential oil source that’s surprisingly good in tea.
- Basil: A homegrown culinary herb that’s easy to grow and fends off mosquitos.
Lavender: A Smell Humans Love But Mosquitos Hate
Adding a few lavender plants to your landscaping won’t just improve your yard’s aesthetic appeal. These prized plants also emanate a sweet, soapy fragrance that mosquitoes dislike. The leaves and flowers of the plant both contain ample amounts of the terpene linalool, which naturally repels those blood-sucking pests.
Even better, you can use lavender on your skin to deter mosquitos! Make a topical mosquito repellent with coconut or almond oil or rub the flowers directly on your skin to ward off insects.
Lemongrass: A Tasty Tea Ingredient With Insect Repellent Properties
If you’re a fan of Eastern dishes, you’ve probably encountered this mosquito-repelling plant on your plate at some point. But if you’re looking to ward off bugs, it’s time to think about planting it in your garden.
Lemongrass contains citronella oil, which as you probably know, is the primary natural mosquito repellant in outdoor citronella candles.
Since this oil interferes with mosquitos’ ability to smell carbon dioxide and lactic acid — which is what attracts mosquitoes to your skin — planting lemongrass in your yard can help keep these noxious pests at bay.
Marigolds: A Classic Landscaping Flower That Fends Off Bloodsucking Pests
If you’ve ever sniffed a marigold, you know it’s not the most beautifully scented flower on the planet. And if you find the smell a bit repulsive, you should know mosquitos feel the same way. Pyrethrum (also known as pyrethrin) is the naturally occurring compound in marigolds that gives them their off-putting scent and mosquito-repelling powers.
The compound also happens to be a primary active ingredient in many organic insecticides. If you can put up with their scent, planting a few marigolds can offer you excellent protection against mosquitos.
Mint: An Edible Insect Repellent
Love mojitos but hate mosquitos? Then a few mint plants are exactly what you need. If you love peppermint, that’s a great choice, but all types of mint naturally repel these annoying pests. You can opt for spearmint, chocolate mint, apple mint, water mint — why not try a few?
Once your mint is thriving, break off a few sprigs and rub them on your skin for extra protection against these blood-stealing bugs. It’s the mint essential oils that mosquitoes don’t like, so you’ll need to release those oils to get the most benefit.
Catnip: Cats Love It, Mosquitos Hate It
Your feline might think catnip is the bee’s knees, but the mosquitos flitting around your yard don’t feel the same way. Catnip contains high quantities of the essential oil compound nepetalactone, which is what makes cats go crazy when they get a whiff of it. It’s that same compound that makes the plant a powerful mosquito repellant. According to researchers, nepetalactone is up to 10 times more effective than DEET at repelling mosquitos.
Lantana: An Essential Oil For Your Skin
Lantana flowers aren’t just beautiful. They’re also excellent mosquito deterrents. But if you decide to root these plants in your yard, they won’t ward off mosquitos completely on their own. While the plants do emit some fragrance, you’ll get more benefit by applying lantana to your skin since it’s the essential oils that pests dislike.
Pluck the flowers, crush the petals to release their oils, and mix them with some coconut oil. Researchers have found that topical application of this lantana oil mixture can provide mosquito protection for up to four hours!
American Beautyberry: Another Essential Oil Option (That’s Great In Sweet Tea!)
The American Beautyberry plant features clusters of magenta-colored berries that are lovely to behold. Not only can it add a unique touch of color to your existing landscaping, but it can also help keep mosquitoes away. This shrub is part of the mint family, and like the mint we talked about earlier, it contains essential oils that noxious pests want nothing to do with. As a bonus, Beautyberry leaves and berries are edible, and they make a wonderfully refreshing ice tea!
Basil: A Tasty Flavor Mosquitos Can’t Stand
If you already love basil as a culinary herb, you’ll be happy to know that adding it to your garden is a great way to fight off mosquitos. It grows quickly and produces a potent enough odor to fend off noxious pests, but if you want the best mosquito protection, you need to plant the right types. Lime basil and holy basil (also called tulsi) are your best bets, but any variety will work better than no basil at all.
If you need help planning your landscaping or taking excellent care of your lawn, our team at Clearfork Lawn Care is at your service. We specialize in landscape design and maintenance, outdoor lighting, sod installation, sprinkler systems, and much more, so get in touch with us today for all your landscaping needs! Give us a call at 817-705-9352 or send us a message with any questions or concerns, and we’ll be in touch.