12 Fragrant Plants That Repel Mosquitoes
Marigolds contain a compound called Pyrethrum which is used in many different insect repellents. It’s recommended that you position Marigolds around the entrances and windows of your home to create a barrier to deter mosquitoes from entering your home.
While rosemary is most frequently used to flavor dishes such as garlic and rosemary steak (which I highly recommend) it can also be used to repel and deter insects. Rosemary can be planted indoors or out as long as it gets full sun. It’s a great plant if you and your family and friends enjoy gathering around the fire pit in the midst of summer. Simply, toss in some rosemary and let its incense surround you.
5. Lemon Balm
Lemon Balm is a member of the mint family and offers a wide array of healing properties in addition to keeping mosquitos away from your property. In an added bonus, it attracts chief pollinators like bees and butterflies. To make a repellent for yourself, crush a group of leaves in your hand and rub them into your skin. While fragrant and useful, this plant is also considered an invasive species, to avoid a lawn full of Lemon Balm, plant it in a pot. It will grow quickly and reseed itself, making for an easy no-nonsense plant and repellent any gardener will love.
Basil is an outstanding natural repellent and is also one of the most pungent, giving off its scent without the leaves needing to be crushed or touched. In addition to being an effective repellent, it can be used in your kitchen for a variety of tasty dishes. Basil can be grown in pots or straight into your yard.
One of the most heard of repellents is citronella, its used in candles, bug spray, even bracelets to ward off pesky mosquitos. But you don’t need to spend money on fancy tiki torches to keep mosquitos away from your home, keep it simple and plant it. Citrosum, the plant that we commonly refer to as citronella carries the citronella fragrance through its foliage. It will naturally protect you and your family when crushed and rubbed onto skin. Citrosum is a perennial grass and will group up to six feet in areas with full sun and good drainage. Thankfully, citrosum is a strong and relatively tolerant in drought-prone areas.
True to legend, garlic will not only keep Dracula away, it will also keep mosquitos at bay. Plus you’ll never have to buy garlic from the store again. It’s easy to grow and doesn’t need much space in your garden. They grow in individual cloves after they’ve broken off from a whole bulb. They multiply in the ground which forms a new bulb that will contain five to ten more cloves. It’s the gift that keeps on giving.
Pennyroyal is ideal for outside and inside your home. Keeping a vase of pennyroyal in your room will kill any residing mosquitos as well as prevent any newcomers from taking up residence. When going out to places that are mosquito ridden such as the lake, stuff a few crushed stems into your pockets to keep mosquitos at bay. As part of the mint family, pennyroyal can become an invasive species quite quickly. As such, if you’re planting pennyroyal in your yard, use a tough border that it won’t be able to penetrate.
10. Bee Balm
Medicinal, culinary, and repelling, bee balm does it all. Bee balm repels mosquitos while alive in your garden and crushed onto skin. It’s native to North America and is also known as horsemint and wild bergamot. It blooms in bright pinks, reds, and light purple with leaves that give off a scent similar to bergamot orange. They can grow in clumps up to three feet tall and attract a wide assortment of birds and butterflies.
Similar to citronella, geranium gives off a light lemon scent and is said to be one of the most effective plants to deter pests. What makes the geranium unique is its beautiful blooms that make it attractive as well as functional. They prefer sunny dry climates, but will grow in colder climates as long as they are in planters and pruned frequently.
Catnip is not just a cute name for this plant, it is literally catnip. While it repels mosquitos, it will attract cats so plant these somewhere where cats can rub and prowl without hurting other plants or crashing into any fragile pottery or vases. It’s easy to grow and easy to maintain, so enjoy your mosquito free yard…possibly full of cats.
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