Are you stuck indoors in the summertime because you can’t seem to repel mosquitoes that swarm you when you step out the door?
There are some individuals who have this quite ‘classical’ view that those annoying creatures called mosquitoes are afraid of nothing and no-one. I used to belong to that group myself ever since I knew what that whining and buzzing sound in my ears meant. Those pesky mosquitoes are the bane of my life.
Then I went to live with my aunt. She was born a gardener, no kidding. From her, I learned the Achilles heel of those disease-carrying noisy parasites. Yeah, as you must have finally realized, I intensely dislike mosquitoes. So when I learned the secrets of banishing them from my perimeter of existence, my oh my, what a find!
It really is simple. Those annoying things (the pesky mosquitoes) hate pleasant smells. Gee, I wonder why I’m not surprised. They obviously love sweat and other yucky body secretions, so if you plant a flower with a great fragrance and certain malaria-repellent properties, you’ve hit the jackpot.
10 Plants to Repel Mosquitoes So You Can Reclaim Your Own Backyard
So, if like me, you are strongly anti-‘mosquito’ish (yeah, I just coined that), you will enjoy reading this as much as I did writing it. If you are on the fence, still come along for the ride. I promise to make you a believer or spend the rest of my days trying.
1 – Lavender can repel mosquitoes
Everyone, including our opponent ‘The Mosquito’ knows the lavender flower has a very lovely scent: good for Team Human, bad for Team Mosquito. Planting lavender in your garden or in pots beside your doors and windows is a surefire way to send those tiny invaders packing. There has been great speculation that the oil in the leaves responsible for the flower’s awesome smell can practically lay a mosquito’s acute senses to waste, turning them into actual flying zombies. Some anti-mosquito writers also suggest rubbing the oil on your skin for even better results. I say, why not?!
2 – Basil
The sweet basil plant has a very sharp smell that all herb gardeners are familiar with. It repels all sorts of insects, and fortunately, the mosquito is not the exception to the rule. Any type of basil can and will do the job, but for even more effective results, use either the lemon basil or the cinnamon basil. They have an even stronger scent than their other basil cousins.
3 – Marigolds
The smell of marigolds makes them a prime candidate in our mosquito-repellent quest. Just like the lavender, they can be planted in your garden or grown as potted plants and placed at entry points such as doors and windows.
4 – Repel mosquitoes with rosemary
The rosemary plant comes in handy for seasoning your favorite dishes, serves as a great decoration option, and is solid ammunition in the great war against mosquitoes. If you are having a little bonfire night outdoors and you don’t want your guests finding excuses to leave your house before they get bitten to death by those little party crashers, toss some rosemary into the fire. The incense smell would send every mosquito with a desire to see the next day running for its life.
5 – Lemon balm
The lemon balm gives a minty fresh smell which makes mosquitoes want to throw up. It also has great healing properties. Not literally, fact-checkers. Lighten up! However, it is invasive: it doesn’t stop growing and spreading. So, do not grow the lemon balm plants in your garden. They are best used as potted plants in waging the scare-all-mosquitoes-away war.
6 – Lemon thyme
Like lemon balm, lemon thyme can keep those blood-thirsty skeeters from snacking on your blood. Plant them in pots near your porch and watch them steer clear of your personal space.
7 – Catnip does more that light up kitty–it can repel mosquitoes
Who knew that catnip is for more than just getting your cat lit? Apparently, they also repel mosquitoes. The minty fresh smell will send those bloodsuckers a clear message to buzz off.
8 – Lemongrass
The fresh, herbaceous lemongrass is so refreshing to the palate and makes a lovely ornamental on your patio. As an added bonus, it, too, seems to repel mosquitoes.
9 – Garlic
Ahhhh. My favorite culinary plant, the humble bulb that makes everything so tasty. Wait, what? It seems these buzzing insects do not prefer the pungent aroma that gives these plants their delicious flavor puts off these bugs.
10 – Citronella (a classic plant to repel mosquitoes)
Some gardeners call the citronella by its nickname–the mosquito plant. That’s because it will repel mosquitoes. It has a strong aroma which is pleasing to humans but apparently not so much to bugs. The fragrance is very similar to the smell of decorative torch fluid, which often contains citronella oil extracted from this plant. Score!
Apartment Dweller? Don’t Have a Green Thumb? Try Essential Oils to Repel Mosquitoes
If you live in a condo or apartment with a small patio or lack a green thumb, you can still benefit from the mosquito-deterrent properties of each of these species.
By purchasing essential oils–plant extracts that give you all the good stuff without needing to grow it yourself!
Not only will you find the essential oils useful for bug control, but you will also find they pull double duty in treating myriad ailments.
You can mix the oil into a misting bottle with a carrier oil and distilled water to make a fantastic smelling insect repellent spray. Or, you can burn it in a diffuser that creates an ultra-fine mist that will keep the pesky little guys at bay.
The Takeaway: Try These Plants to Help Repel Mosquitoes and Reclaim Your Porch!
Yes, so I have a very vivid imagination. But can you blame me? No, don’t answer that. Seriously though, mosquitoes are not nice. They are unapologetic bloodsuckers who make painful bites, parasites to the ecosystem, carriers of very deadly diseases, and huge noisemakers. I really don’t see what’s to like about them. If you do, please let us know (with solid evidence) and we would take down this post immediately. Till then, having these ten plants in your garden would ensure those pesky mosquitoes stay far, far away.