In the summer, getting outside and enjoying nature is great... until you start getting bug bites. Here are 10 aesthetic plants that can repel mosquitos around your home and outdoor spaces.
Citronella candles are very popular pest repellants. However, few people know that citronella is also a large grass that can be grown in the garden or in a pot to repel mosquitos naturally. Grow in full sun with well-draining soil.
Cymbopogon nardus. Common names: Citronella. Mana Grass. Used in insect repellents.
Lavender is a fragrant and beautiful plant that naturally repels mosquitoes, fleas, flies, and moths. The plant can be rubbed on the skin for additional repellence. Grow in full sun with well-draining soil.
Flowering lavender buds
3. Lemon Balm
Lemon balm gives off a pleasant minty-lemon scent that repels mosquitos and attracts butterflies. Crushed leaves can be rubbed on the skin as a repellant. Lemon balm is hardy and invasive, so it should be grown in a pot to prevent spreading.
Lemon Balm (Melissa officinalis), herb garden, St. Andrew's-Sewanee
The seasonal ageratum flower repels mosquitos well, although it should not be used directly on the skin. Ageratum is beautiful and very easy to grow in partial sun.
Ageratum at small farm
Author: Dwight Sipler
Peppermint is a tasty and fragrant mosquito repellant that is similar to lemon balm. Planting peppermint around your garden and doorways will keep mosquitos away, but be wary that it is invasive.
Author: Kham Tran
The chemical that attracts cats to catnip, nepetalactone, is also an extremely effective insect repellant. This invasive plant grows easily, so it should be planted in pots to prevent spreading.
Catnip (Nepeta cataria), Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
Author: D. Gordon E. Robertson
This tasty herb repulses mosquitos and house flies by giving off a strong fragrance. Leaves can be rubbed directly on the skin for additional protection. Basil prefers full sun, but can also be grown indoors.
Basil plant leaves.
Marigolds contain a compound called pyrethrum, which is a strong insect repellant. Marigolds are best for repelling mosquitos, nematodes, and aphids. The colorful flowers also brighten up any garden or patio. Grow in full sun and well-drained soils.
Author: Joe Sala
This tasty and fragrant herb repels many insects, including those that invade vegetables, which makes it great for vegetable gardens. Rosemary prefers full sun and well-drained soil but can be grown indoors too.
Rosemary (Rosmarinus officinalis) leaves and blossom in North Texas
Fragrant geraniums, especially those that have a lemon scent, are an attractive and popular mosquito repellant. The showy flowers of these plants make them a great addition to any garden or planter. Grow geraniums in partial sun and water thoroughly.
Author: Eric Hunt