Mosquitoes crash the party like no one else; showing up uninvited and staying way too late. On top of that, they put their little bloodthirsty mouths into you. Some of them even spread deadly diseases.
Spray repellents are just one way to keep those mosquitoes at bay, though.
If you choose the right plants and flowers, your garden can actually do a great job at protecting you from mosquitoes, too. To that end, we've assembled a list of the best vegetation to keep mosquitoes from your deck and patio areas all summer long. We'll even throw in some other pointers, as well.
8 Plants That Mosquitoes Hate
Nearly all of the plants on this list don't just push mosquitoes away; they actually serve wonderful purposes in their own respective rights. Use some in your food prep. Use some to spruce up bouquets. Use some to add a splash of flavor to your iced tea. Really, its a win-win!
You may already know about this one. It's possible that you have even used citronella candles already. Did you realize, though, that you can grow citronella?
Citronella is actually a perennial grass that gives off a powerful scent. That scent is strong enough to mask other scents that mosquitoes really enjoy: like you! If you grow citronella in pots or planters on your deck or patio, you can move them to keep them nearby wherever you are chilling out. You could even just grow it right in a garden near your deck or patio.
Mosquitoes really don't care for lemon-scented vegetation, so you can also use lemon thyme or lemon basil, as well.
Lemon Balm is hardy, drought-resistant and a fast grower. Because it is a fast grower, you'll want to consider planting this one in a pot, lest it take over your entire garden. Of course, in a pot, you can also bring it to wherever you are hanging out.
This one is a winner on two fronts: Mosquitoes will hate you, but your cat will love you. This natural mosquito repellent is pretty simple to grow. You won't want to plant it with your other flowers if you have backyard cat, though, because they can't stop themselves from rolling in it.
Marigolds include pyrethrum, an ingredient present in many different kinds of insect repellents. Most pests, including mosquitoes, think marigolds smell awful. Green-thumb gardeners regularly grow them around the perimeter of their gardens to keep a whole host of pests from treating their gardens like a salad bar.
Not just mosquitoes, but most bugs dislike the scent of peppermint. A sprig of peppermint is also delicious in iced tea and lemonade, rendering it an excellent plant to keep on/by your deck or patio.
Pro Tip: Should you get actually get a mosquito bite, rubbing peppermint leaves on the bite can offer cooling relief.
In addition to it being a real turn off for mosquitoes, basil makes great pesto and bruschetta!. Basil is really simple to grow and does wonderfully in pots or planters. Like some of the other options on this list, you can pull it right up to your deck furniture or maybe even keep it by your grill.
Lavender's beautiful purple color is easy on the eyes and its scent has a natural calming effect on humans. Mosquitoes, however, hate it. Having fewer mosquitoes around is also pretty calming, wouldn't you say?
Along with the aforementioned basil, rosemary is another cooking staple that helps to keep mosquitoes away from your deck or patio area.
Pro Tip: Add a few stalks of rosemary to the grill or very near your fire pit to create a top-notch mosquito-repelling aroma.
3 Additional Ways To Keep Mosquitoes Away From Your Yard
After you have planted a garden of wonderful-smelling, mosquito-repelling plants and flowers on or near your patio or deck, you can turn to various other trusted methods to make those mosquitoes scarce.
DEET or Picaridin; New Information About Mosquito Repellent
Bug spray seems like a pretty intuitive option, right? There's new information in the world of mosquito repellent, though. For longer than half a century, DEET, a synthetic substance, has sat perched at the top of the bug repellent mountain. Recently, there has been a whole new option on the market: picaridin.
While both DEET and picaridin are shown to be effective at fending off mosquitoes and other bugs, each is very much unique. DEET can leave an oily feeling on your skin and, let's be honest, it doesn't smell great. It even dissolves certain synthetic materials, like rayon, spandex, and vinyl.
Picaridin is also a synthetic substance, but is was developed from the same plant genus as black pepper. Similar to DEET, the EPA has determined that the normally-recommended use of picaridin does not pose a health issue. Unlike DEET, though, picaridin is odorless, non-oily, and it doesn't break down plastics or similar synthetics. For this reason, an increasing number of repellents are opting for picaridin as their active ingredient.
Remove Standing Water
Standing water is where mosquitoes lay their eggs, so check your yard for any places that could be collecting water. Kiddie pools, rain gutters, and even bird baths should be considered suspect. It doesn't take much standing water to become a breeding ground for mosquitoes.
Mosquitoes might great bloodsuckers, but they are terrible fliers. By thoughtfully placing fans on and around your deck or patio, you can seriously keep them from flying into your space.
Try out different rates of speed and placement until you get the right setup.
No one likes mosquitoes. Fortunately, there are many ways to keep them at bay. From tried and true plants and flowers, to chemical alternatives, there is absolutely no reason you should have deal with itchy bites this summer.
E.P.M. Lawnscape and Supply offers commercial lawn maintenance services in the Jackson, MI area. Feel free to contact us online or call us today at (517) 990-0110.