Repel Mosquitoes Naturally with These 6 Plants
Too many mosquitoes in your backyard? Do they seem to gather in the outdoor areas in which you love to spend the most time? Fill your yard with plants that naturally repel mosquitoes and send them flying the opposite direction. Due to the strong scent of the essential oils in most of the following plants, mosquitoes, as well as many other types of insects, are repelled by them.
Peppermint has a very strong scent and repels most insects. To keep the mosquitoes away, plant it in small pots in and around your garden. An aggressive plant, mint will grow quickly, take over an area, and can be difficult to remove. Mint has also been known to attract bees and butterflies to the area, so keep the plant away from doors and open windows.
While many people plant marigolds because of their bright color and tendency to survive through various types of weather, these plants also keep mosquitoes away with their unique smell. Put these plants in pots and place them near the edges of your patio and doors to prevent mosquitoes from getting close to your home. (Marigolds may also be planted in vegetable gardens to keep other insects from eating the food you produce.)
Widely used in bug repellent sprays, candles, and oils, citronella keeps the mosquitoes away in its natural grassy form, just as well if not better than all those products. In fact, it seems to be a much better repellent as a plant and can grow to be 6 feet tall. Plant it in the ground, in a spot with lots of sun. Citronella does not last through frost, so be sure to plant it in warmer climates only.
Basil, which is a plant you can smell quite easily when it’s nearby, is not only an edible plant that can be used in the kitchen, but also works well at keeping the mosquitoes at bay. Basil grows well in plenty of sun, but likes to stay moist. Try planting it in a large pot so it doesn’t spread too quickly. This way, the pot can be moved around and placed where it gets lots of sun, but not so much that it dries out and gets overexposed.
Another potent herb used in a wide variety of recipes, rosemary repels mosquitoes with its strong smell. Unlike basil, this plant loves hot and dry weather and does not require a lot of water. It also does well when potted, as it can be shaped as it grows and the pots can be moved around your yard as the weather changes. Rosemary can be planted into a garden, as well.
Lavender, known for its strong and fragrant aroma, is widely used in bath and beauty products. This same scent is one that mosquitoes and other bugs hate. It's very floral and can also repel insects when cut from the main plant and placed in a bundle or vase, which can come in handy for gatherings and events held outdoors in the warm summer months. To grow lavender, plant it in the ground and only water it when the soil is nearly dry. By watering it deeply but less frequently, it should flourish, especially with lots of sun.