If you are a serious gardener, you spend a great deal of time outdoors. And, for sure, you would rather be tending your plants than swatting mosquitoes.
While there are lots of things you can do to keep mosquitoes away, there are some plants that will beautify your yard and help repel mosquitoes.
As one more way to keep mosquitoes away from you and your yard, try planting these attractive plants.
Horsemint grows wild in most of the Eastern United States, from Mexico, Texas up to Minnesota to Vermont. Native Americans used it as a remedy for colds and influenza. It has natural fungicidal and bacterial retardant properties since it is essential oils are high in thymol.
This terrific herb we use for seasoning is also a fantastic, natural mosquito repellant. It has been used for centuries to keep pesky mosquitoes away. Rosemary is a native of the Mediterranean, so it enjoys hot, dry weather and well-drained soil. It’s hardy in USDA zones 8-10, and must be grown as a pot plant in colder climates. If you happen to live in a part of the country where rosemary does not grow, you can get a fantastic excellent rosemary essential oil; mix 4 drops with 1/4 cup olive oil. Store in a cool, dry place. When it comes to fresh plant oils as natural mosquito repellants, there’s every reason to have the plant in your yard, if they will grow in your region. It is an inexpensive and attractive way to increase the appearance of the landscape and have natural mosquito repellants available also.
Mosquitoes do not like its scent any better (and some people feel the same way). Marigolds are sun-loving annuals that come in a number of sizes and shapes for almost any landscape.
This charming little bedding plant contains coumarin, and mosquitoes detest the smell. It’s used in the perfume industry and is even in some commercial mosquito repellants. Don’t rub ageratum on your skin, however. It’s some other less desirable elements that you don’t wish to keep on your skin in quantity. Ageratums are annuals, and the come in a muted blue and white that compliments many other plantings.
There are two varieties of plants which are known as mosquito plants. One is a member of the geranium family that was genetically engineered to incorporate the properties of citronella. Citronella only grows in tropical areas, but it is a well known repellant for mosquitoes. This plant was created to bring the repellant properties of citronella into a hardier plant. It will grow where any geranium will flourish. Many have questioned its usefulness as a mosquito repellant, but it is attractive enough to warrant planting for it’s ornamental value.
The other type of mosquito plant is agastache cana. As you may guess, hummingbirds are very attracted to it.
It is a New Mexico native, also found in parts of Texas. It is, in fact, a member of the mint family and its leaves do have a pungent odor when crushed. In its native habitat, it is perennial, and is usually hardy in USDA Zones 5a-9a. It blooms late summer to early autumn, so it catches hummingbirds on their annual migration. The long, medium pink flowers reel in butterflies as well.
One of the most effective mosquito repellant plants is normal catnip. Recent studies have revealed that it is ten times more effective than DEET at repelling mosquitoes. It’s a short lived perennial throughout most of the United States. It’s easy to grow from seed, and quickly reseeds.
With all of these plants, the leaves must be crushed to release the aroma. Otherwise mosquitoes can’t smell them. And, with rosemary and catnip, you can simply crush a few leaves and rub on your skin and clothes to enhance the effect.
So, next time you are revising your plantings, consider using some of these attractive plants to do more than just enhance the landscape. You can have quite ornamentals for Animal Control and also drive mosquitoes away.