Summer time is here and 4th of July is right around the corner. Many of us will be enjoying this weekend and spending a majority of our time outdoors. While we’re all enjoying the fireworks, grilling, and socializing, there’s one uninvited nuisance in our midst…mosquitoes! Oh, how we loathe these pesky, yet familiar little critters down here in the South. Sometimes, bug sprays and repellants just aren’t enough. We’ve found 6 all natural, mosquito repelling plants that will not only provide your outdoor space with greenery, but also bid these party crashers farewell. You’ll actually be surprised to know that some of these remedies are well known culinary staples and can serve a dual purpose.
Citronella Grass is actually the ingredient that we are all familiar with that gives citronella candles their distinct smell. If you’re happy with the results that the candles give you, then you will be pleased to know that the plants are actually much stronger, meaning that they are much more effective at repelling mosquitoes. This plant can grow to heights of five feet. They don’t require much effort to care for, but they must be grown in warm climates because frost will kill them.
Lavender is a very durable plant that does not need a lot of love to thrive. In fact, it only needs full sun and well-drained soil to produce that fragrant, tranquil scent that we all love. Did you know that the relaxing scent that we love is the same scent that repels mosquitoes? The oils are even said to reduce the mosquito’s ability to smell, which will keep them away from your skin.
Marigolds are beautiful orange annual flowers that are very popular summer plants because they thrive in full sun and humid conditions. You can even water these plants during the hottest time of the day without damaging them. These little beauties contain a little component called Pyrethrum, which is an ingredient that is used to deter mosquitoes. It is not as powerful as some of the other options, but if you place the plant near a window, they will fly in the other direction.
Rosemary is a not only a delicious herb to use on your food, but it also has a strong scent that can keep mosquitoes at bay. One helpful tip, toss a few sprigs of rosemary into the fire and let them burn. The smoke will smell pleasant, and the scent will deter mosquitoes and other irritating insects that may be nearby.
The scent and the oils that are present in the leaves of a peppermint plant are great for deterring mosquitoes from landing on your skin. You can simply be in the vicinity of the plant, or you can crush the leaves and rub the oils on your skin. Peppermint oil is so powerful that it is able to kill larvae that have been exposed within a 24 hour period of time.
Basil is another herb that tastes great in food, but the strong, pungent scent of the herb is noticeable without even crushing the leaves. This means that the scent is strong enough to repel mosquitoes when it is simply placed in an area. All of the basil variations will work, but lemon basil is the most effective at repelling mosquitoes. Cinnamon basil is also an option that works well because of its potent scent.