Don’t you hate those pesky mosquitos? Not only do they ruin the atmosphere when you’re trying to have an enjoyable night outdoors, they can also sneak their way into your home bite everyone.
To help you fix this problem, we’ve got a list of the best mosquito repellent plants you can add to your home, both indoors and outdoors.
These plants come with natural properties that repel these bothersome insects. And, in doing so, they’ll keep you and your loved ones away from the irritating bites and red spots, not to mention the risk of disease carried by these creatures.
Rosemary is often used in food to add flavor. The herb is a great alternative to using salt or other less healthy flavorings because once placed over fire it exudes a nice aroma and infuses extra flavor to your meals.
What many people aren’t aware of is that along with sage, rosemary is also very effective is keeping mosquitos and other insects away.
Different species are attracted to different smells. That’s why your dog likes playing and rolling in your laundry whereas we prefer our clothes smelling freshly washed.
Similarly, we enjoy the woody odor of both rosemary and sage have. But, it is unpleasant for mosquitos and other insects.
This makes them great plants to add both indoors and in your yard. You can likewise put them up in your patio or deck in order to keep these areas mosquito free during the warmer months. This will let you and your family enjoy those spaces for grilling and guests.
Lavender is known for its soothing and relaxing effects. For these reasons, they’re popularly used in essential oils and scented candles.
What makes them unique is that they not only smell good but also helps you calm down. This makes them very useful when you need to step away from all the chaos in your day and just slow down.
The type of lavender most of us are familiar with are those in oil or solid form. But, this actually comes from the leaves of the lavender plant. These plants have wonderful, bright purple color that make lovely garden additions.
As a bonus, their aroma is offensive to mosquitos. This makes them perfect additions in your home or just outside your home to ward insects from your entry and exit ways.
They’re also great to put in spaces where you entertain guests because not only do they keep the environment smelling lovely, they also keep unwanted critters away.
Basil is another food condiment that’s often added to food. It gives you a mild minty flavor that’s somewhat sweet as well. The fresh minty flavor also makes it appealing to your sense of smell.
The odor of basil leaves are natural mosquito repellents. And, they don’t need to be crushed or mashed in order to work.
A 2011 study notes that essential oils made from basil can give you as much as 100% protection from mosquitos. Additionally, an earlier study also noted that the plant is toxic for mosquito larvae. This means they not only keep them away, they also prevent them from multiplying.
Unlike lavender which like dry environments, basil prefer more damp surroundings. But, you do need to drain excess water to help it grow. This makes them better for container gardening.
Compared to basil, sage and rosemary, catnip is less well known. However, you’ve probably heard or noticed it because of its strange effects of cats.
The reason cats like catnip so much is that they contain nepetalactone. This is very attractive to most cats because upon smelling it, the aroma triggers a chemical reaction within them that causes them to experience overwhelming happiness.
This is also where it gets its name.
The good news is, they’re safe for cats to ingest. But, you don’t want them to eat too much because this can cause them to throw up later on.
That said, catnip is another minty plant that’s very effective in repelling mosquitos. In fact, it does so with many other insects as well.
The same chemical that attracts cats is also what keeps insects away from this plant. In fact research shows that nepetalactone is 10 times more effect than DEET as a mosquito repellent.
Catnip are one of the easiest herbs to grow. In fact, they seem to find they way into gardens even without you knowing it.
5. Lemon Balm
Lemon Balm is another herb in the mint family. But, its minty aroma comes with a hint of lemon. This makes it appealing to our sense of smell.
The herb is well known for its ability to reduce stress. Although, many people also see results with it for weight loss, anxiety and pain relief.
While you may not have noticed it, lemon balm is readily available in stores. It comes in the form capsules, essential oils, tinctures, ointments and creams. So, more likely than not, you’ve probably seen or used it in some products.
Besides it healing and soothing effects, lemon balm also repels mosquitos while attracting pollinators, or animals that help plants bear fruit or seeds. This makes them useful for your garden in that it helps it grow faster.
The one thing you do want to be aware of is that lemon balm is an invasive plant, much like its cousins in the mint family. That means its seeds tend to try to take over your garden. For this reason, it’s considered a pest in some areas.
So, it’s much better to plant it in a pot rather than your garden. This keeps it away from your flowers and other plants while still attracting pollinators and keeping mosquitos away.
Peppermint is one of the most well-known mint herbs. That’s probably thanks to the chewing gum flavors that many of us had as kids.
As much as we enjoy the minty pepper flavor, it’s deadly for mosquitos. For this reason, to they tend to avoid it. The essence of peppermint comes from the oil from its leaves.
According to published studies, mixing peppermint oil with water kills mosquito larvae within 24 hours. It also repels adult mosquitos. So, just rubbing the oils on your skin is enough to keep these insects from biting you.
You can easily release these oils by crushing the leaves which also releases the scents. That should be enough to repel any mosquitos from your yard.
Citrosum is also known as the mosquito plant. It gets this moniker because people use the plant to keep mosquitos away from their gardens.
Unlike many of the other items in our list, this plant is a flowery shrub. But, it is its leaves and not its flower that repels mosquitos.
The citrosum plant’s leaves carry the smell of citronella which are aromatic to the human sense of smell but offensive to mosquitos. So, all you need to do is crush the leaves to release its essential oils and rub it on your skin. This gives you an instant mosquito repellant that’s also very fragrant.