We all love plants and the gorgeous colors of flowers. But if we can grow plants and flowers that also repel mosquitoes away, well, those are plants worth keeping. With so much information out there, it can be hard to find out what actually works.
Thankfully, you have us. Today, we are coming at you with some cold hard facts about the types of plants you should keep in your home and garden. Don’t worry; these are beautiful and fragrant plants (with insect-repelling powers) you will absolutely love.
Spoiler alert: lavender is definitely on the list.
Why We Keep Them Far, Far Away
While there are so many types of mosquitoes that are harmless, there are 100 species that like to bite people. Of these 100 species, only the females bite, and they only need blood to lay eggs. We understand the plight of childbirth, but that doesn’t mean our families need to be a meal.
The bigger problem is that some of these mosquitoes can carry viruses and diseases that can make us or our children very sick. Another issue with this is that mosquitoes can travel pretty far, so spreading these diseases to new places isn’t hard. These pests can spread Zika, West Nile Virus, and more. Mosquito control equals disease control.
Keeping them away from us and our homes is the best line of defense from these illnesses.
Protecting Your Home
While there are plants that will help repel mosquitoes (we’re getting there, we promise), there are other steps you can take. We’ve compiled this checklist of good home practices to keep the mosquitoes out.
The screens on windows and doors should be kept clean and rip or tear-free. Mosquitoes can get into the house in even the smallest of rips. Once a mosquito is inside, it can live for a few weeks. And a female mosquito lays eggs every three days. None of these are facts you want to be associated with your home.
So ensure that you wash the screens thoroughly with soap and water. Keep them dry and properly maintained. If you do notice any holes or rips, replace them immediately. They're easy to fix, and the pieces only cost a few dollars at local hardware stores. With a few video tutorials, DIY should be a breeze.
It is crucial to keep standing water OUT of your garden. Standing water is like a personal invitation to mosquitoes to breed in your backyard. Certain species only need about a tablespoon of water to lay eggs.
If they notice a lot of standing water in your backyard that isn’t disturbed, they’ll take advantage and build a nursery for their mosquito larvae.
Trim Your Yard
If you have a backyard with a lot of grass, be sure to keep it trimmed and well maintained. You don’t need to hire a gardener, but make sure to cut the grass often. Long, unkempt grass is a perfect hiding place for mosquitoes. Many people think mosquitoes are nocturnal, but that simply isn’t the case.
Mosquitoes come out at night because their predators, birds, and humans, of course, are usually asleep. This gives them time to roam and look for what they need without any risk. So tall grasses are a great way for them to hide during the day while they wait for the perfect time to roam.
Once you’ve cut the grass, make sure to clean up all the trimmings. Debris-filled rain gutters are a mosquito’s dream. They’re full of moisture and perfect hiding spots. Be sure to have these cleaned out and washed out. When cleaning, use a small amount of soap; mosquitoes can’t lay eggs on soapy water.
Plants That Prevent Mosquito Bites
We know you’ve been waiting for this. Here is a list of plants that can keep mosquitoes away from your house. We’ve even included a few ways to keep these mosquito-repellent plants you might not have thought of.
Lavender: Strong Powers, Strong Fragrance
Yes, we can confirm that lavender does keep the mosquitoes away. Mosquitoes find us by the air we exhale and our natural body scents. Lavender is pleasant to our olfactory receptors but not theirs. This fragrance masks our smells and keeps mosquitoes away.
The best part of keeping lavender? You can keep lavender in many forms — growing in your garden, dried in bouquets, or even in lavender sachets.
Just like sage in the shower keeps you refreshed, satchels or bowls of lavender in your home will smell amazing. That's not all: Lavender helps shoo off spiders and fleas. There is also a mixture of calming effects from this member of the mint family, so keep it peaceful spots.
This is a great plant to keep on the windowsill. It will be awesome for your spaghetti sauces AND keep mosquitoes from setting up homes. The iconic, delicious aromas mask the natural scents and carbon dioxide we exhale.
Not only is the plant gorgeous in the window, but it’s straight-up delicious. Sorry, mosquitoes, your dinner invitation must have gotten lost in the mail.
Mostly found in tropical climates, lemongrass is a great plant to add for its mosquito repelling powers. In fact, many plants with the name lemon in them are great additives to your home and backyard to ensure mosquitoes stay away. Why? Citrus is a proven mosquito repellent.
Lemongrass can also be used for infusing flavor into foods. So another great plant to get multiple uses out of. Be sure to keep it potted securely and in plenty of sunlight. If you live in an area that experiences colder weather in the winter, be sure to bring those pots inside.
Butterflies and bees also love lemon scents, so consider lemon thyme or lemon balm as well.
We know there’s a theme, but garlic is another item to keep around as a mosquito repellent. It might be hard to grow, so try using fresh garlic in cooking and recipes a few times a week.
No, don’t eat this one. But planting marigold in your garden will keep mosquitoes and other plant-eating bugs at bay. They’re gorgeous and bring a lot of color to your garden.
Planting these annuals will make you happy anytime you step outside. It will also make it safe for you and the fam to play outside all day.
This flower also helps fend off aphids, Mexican bean beetles, and whiteflies.
Essential Oils: No Patio Needed
In addition to plants and florals that we can plant, essential oils can be used as repellents.
Chemical repellents aren’t safe — looking at you, DEET. And the long-term effects on your family’s health are a risk, not to mention the harmful effects on your environment.
For years, we know and have known that essential oils are safe to use. Now that we know they’re effective, why take the chance with chemicals?
Here are a few of the best essential oils that will help keep the mosquitoes away:
Citronella, also known as lemongrass oil, is the number one essential oil used for repelling mosquitoes. You’ll find a lot of candles and scented products that utilize citronella, but straight oils are the best.
Of course, if lavender blooms were great, essential oils were going to be on the list as well. One plus side to lavender repelling mosquitoes is that the oil smells amazing. The benefit comes in because lavender oil can be carried around easier than satchels of lavender buds (or huge pots and planters).
Clove oil is a great way to rid pesky insects from your property. It has been used for centuries for its medicinal purposes. Now scientists are starting to recognize its potential to repel mosquitoes.
Putting the Ingredients Together
Now you know: lavender does repel mosquitoes. We can confirm that using lavender in any of its forms will help repel mosquitoes… and mask those smells coming from your kids’ soccer bags.
But what is the best way to get this protection on the go? The Natural Patch Co. is ready.
How We Best the Pests
Your best bet for protection against mosquitoes that can travel is our BuzzPatch. It is an all-natural blend of citronella and lavender essential oils. Where have we seen these before?
That’s right! Two of the best oils used to repel mosquitoes are the oils that we use in these stickers.
What’s even better about our products is that they’re safe for the whole family. Babies can even get protection using our products. There are hardly any, if any, products that offer protection for even the smallest of littles.
Don’t think it can get better? Prepare to be amazed. BuzzPatches stick on clothes, not on skin, so our kids won’t be bothered by them and peel them off. They also feature the cutest designs so that everyone will have fun with them.
Enjoy More Family Time
With all these plants and our patches, your family is set to repel mosquitoes both at home and on the go. We are confident that you’ll love these great plants and all the fragrances that come with them and the delicious herbs to add to your meals.
It’s Nature vs. Nature, and we’re so happy that plants have our backs.