Gardening to Repel Insects & Mosquitoes
Like lemon grass, some of these plants are also effective to control the dengue fever mosquitoes
Summer is coming, but prepare yourself against the army of mosquitoes and other insects. Some people are allergic to these insects, whereas bites of mosquitoes are extremely itching and causes diseases like malaria, but due to dengue mosquitoes, its life threatening as well. There may be several ways to protect ourselves from mosquitoes, e.g., to put specific oils on your body that keep mosquitoes away from you, use of mosquito coils, use mosquito repellent creams, electronic mosquito repellents and herbal mosquito lotions or spray your areas to keep mosquitoes at a bay. But there is another way to keep mosquitoes away from your homes, garden and areas and that is to crop mosquito repellent plants. These mosquito repellent plants keep the mosquitoes away as well as beautify your garden.
- Neem Plant is a native of Indian subcontinent. Neem is very useful for many herbal purposes. It's the most effective and environmentally friendly source of pest. Moreover, dry Neem leaves are used in libraries to keep off book-eating worms.
- Citronella Scented Geraniums (genus Pelargonium): There are more than 200 variations of Pelargonium. Citronella has pleasant fragrance which emit a strong fresh odor and it actually did keep mosquitoes at bay.
- Lemon Grass (Citronella Grass): It's a hardy but excellent for controlling mosquitoes. It usually grows up to 2 m tall and blooms lavender color flowers. Its a bundle of smaller lemongrass plants, so even by cutting some, it continues growing. Its can be used for drinking green lemon tea. Its Citronella oil comes from this grass is used in candles, perfumes, lanterns and other herbal products. Citronella grass is also effective in controlling dengue fever mosquito (Aedes Aegypti). Pour citronella oil into candles and lanterns that can be burned in the yard to control mosquitoes. This grass has anti fungal properties. Citronella oil is safe for skin and you can apply it for long time. It does not cause any damage to the organism.
- Lemon balm (Melissa officinalis) Lemon balm also keeps the mosquitoes at bay. It grows fast and requires room to spread. Leaves of lemon balm contain citronellal compounds in rich amount. Grow lemon balm in your yard to control mosquitoes. You can also rub lemon balm crushed leaves on the skin to protect yourself from mosquitoes.
- Cedars (Thuja spp.) Insects repel due to the fragrance of its oil within leaves. So its plantation is very good to repel mosquitoes and other insects. Even its very good to deter termites. 'Aromatic cedar' is also available, also called juniper.
- Tea tree (Melaleuca alternifolia) Pure organic tea tree oil is a great natural mosquito and insect repellent. It is also a great eczema and fungus fighter, and and sooths insect bites. Its oil also repels lice, ants, and many other insects that bite.
- Rosemary (Rosmarinus officinalis) - Rosemary plant is woody herb and grows best in warm weather whereas in winter, this plant cannot survive and want warm shelter. To control mosquitoes in warmer months put the rosemary plant pot in the yard. Bugs hate this plant. This plant grows up to 4-5 feet tall and contains blue flowers. Its also used in cooking for seasoning.
- Catnip (Nepeta cataria) The plant grows to about 1 to 3 feet tall. It requires partial shade. Even with minimal attention the catnip plant grows like a weed, so a pot is preferable, as it might spread. Catnip can cause an astonishing reaction. Cats love to get high on this plant, but its harsh smoke for us. The cat will sniff it, roll in and on it, but last for few minutes at a time. A couple of hours later, the cat is ready for second round and will most likely have the same response. It can be used to repel mosquitoes. The crushed plant can be applied directly to the skin or the dried plant can be infused in an oil, such as olive oil.
- Lantana (genus Lantana) - Its a woody shrub. People plant used it as bedding plant which blossoms attractive flower, but keeping bugs away is a bonus. Its of different but with beautiful coulour combination.
- Peppermint (Mentha piperita) Its oil is good to repel not only mosquitoes but also be used to repel mice from your home.
- Spearmint (Mentha spicata) Like peppermint, it also repels mosquito. Its of same family "Mentha".
- Horsemint (Monarda punctata) - Horsemint also helps to repel mosquitoes. Horsemint is a plant that doesn’t need special care. Its smell is like citronella. It grows best in warm weather and sandy soil. This plant has pink flowers. This plant contains natural fungicidal and bacterial retardant properties. It is also used to treat flu.
- Marigolds (Tagetes spp.) This Plant grows up to 6 inches to 3 feet high. Marigolds blossom in multiple colors ranging from yellow to dark orange and red flowers. These are sun-loving plant as its growth delay if it is planted in the shade. Grow marigolds plant in yard, porch pots and in gardens to control mosquitoes. Marigolds are grown near vegetables as they also repel aphids and other insects. Mexican Marigolds dump unpleasant scents on mosquitoes.
- Garlic (Allium sativum) Its long been considered as special food while its oil and spray can be used to repel mosquitoes.
- Clove (Syzygium aromaticum) Its used in different type of foods and for the cure of dental pain as well as reduce blood sugar level. It can also used as mosquito as well as mouse repellent due to its fragrance.
- Lavendar (Lavandula angustifolia) Its strongly aromatic shrub grows as high as 1 to 2 metres (3.3 to 6.6 ft) tall. The leaves are evergreen and the flowers are pinkish-purple (lavender-coloured), need sunny atmosphere. It also repels mosquito.
- Basil (Ocimum americanum) - Its an herbal plant which emit its aroma without crushing it. One can also rub a handful of crushed basil leaves on skin to keep the mosquitoes at bay. This can also used for flavoring the food. Cinnamon basil, lemon basil and Peruvian basil seem to work best to repel the mosquitoes and insetcs, as they have the strongest fragrances.
- Ageratum (genus Ageratum) - It grows in full or partial sun and blooms throughout summer. This plant generate Coumarin which has the horrible smell and repels mosquitoes. Coumarin is generally used in commercial mosquito repellents and perfume industry. Never rub ageratum on skin as it contains elements which the skin doesn’t want.
- Chrysanthemum - Its from the family constitued approx 30 species. It is round, cheerful flowers from which "pyrethrum" is extracted which repel mosquitos. Pyrethrins attack the nervous systems of insects, and inhibit female mosquitoes from biting.
- Eucalyptus (genus Eucalyptus) - Eucalyptus draw a tremendous amount of water from the soil. They are planted (or re-planted) in places to lower the water table and reduce soil salination. Eucalypts have also been used as a way of reducing malaria by draining the soil in many countries of Asia, Africa,Europe and some parts of America. Drainage removes swamps which provide a habitat for mosquito larvae, but can also destroy ecologically productive areas. Its lightly oily scent that is reminiscent sometimes of lemon and sometimes of willow trees. It's oil is highly effective against mosquitoes.
- American beautyberry (Callicarpa americana) - Its a shrubs with tightly clustered small berries that remain on the bush in winter. It grow 4 to 8 feet tall. It can used as hedge around the garden. Leaves of this plant repel mosquitoes, fire ants etc.
- Vanilla Leaf (Achlys triphylla) Sagebrush, Wormwood, and Mugwort (Artemisia spp.) are in the same genus (plant grouping). These plant species can be used as an aromatic smudge which is very effective mosquito repellent. Besides serving as an excellent tent air freshener, the dried leaves are hung in bunches in doorways to ward off flies and mosquitoes. The crushed leaves can also be applied directly to the skin. Dried leaves are strongly aromatic.
- Pineapple weed (Matricaria matricarioides) is a weedy species and be found growing in lawns, edges of roads, and other disturbed areas. The aromatic crushed plant can be applied to the skin to help repel mosquitoes.
Nodding onion, Wild bergamot (Mondarda fistulosa), Snowbrush (Ceonothus velutinus) and Sweetfern (Comptonia peregrina) are also used to repel mosquitoes and other insects.
So we have plenty of choices in growing plants which not only repels mosquitoes but also beautifies the surroundings.