Natural Mosquito Repellents

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Spring is nearly upon us!  Baseball games and hot dogs, spring cleaning, flowers, rain showers and that earthly bliss smell outside when the rain is in the distance. Oh! I can’t forget to mention the intoxicating smell of roasting burgers and steaks on the grill, AND that feeling you get when the sun hits the skin that’s been hiding under layers for months. Ah, spring. How I love it.

Then the mosquitoes come.

Those dreadful sons of b****** are enough to ruin your night, then entire weekend. The endless scratching, bruising and bug spraying is nightmarish and borderline crazy causing madness. I’m not exaggerating. South Carolina folks--you understand.

While it is difficult to completely eliminate these pests, you can take steps to weaken the insanity #au naturale -ly.

Lavender

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It is beautiful, smells amazing and mosquitoes hate it! Plant, then plant some more. They simply just don’t enjoy the smell. We just planted three new lavender plants. Many more to come. I might just start my own lavender field. #mildobsession

Citronella

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By all means, you can light those candles if you want, but I'm talking about the actual plant. Yes. It is a plant! Who knew? The most effective use is rubbing the plant leaves on your skin and clothes. Strangely, I haven’t been able to locate around Charleston. Hello, Amazon!

Bat House

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I think bats are adorable. Now, not many people like to have bats flying around, but they sure do make good friends when it comes to pest control. You can find bat houses  online, or you could build your own. I’ve added one to my project list. Carraway is really into Batman. I think he will enjoy!

Catnip

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Some researchers have found that the oil found in catnip is ten times more effective at repelling mosquitoes than DEET. Anything is better than using DEET! Chemicals people. If you have lots of wild cats that live around be prepared for extra long visits if you decide to go this route. We do have some catnip in our garden. While it doesn’t necessary add to the aesthetic of my garden, our cat friend Cornelia loves it!

Rosemary and Basil

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Now you have another great excuse to start a little herb garden. I use rosemary and basil in my cooking ALL THE TIME. Throw some of that lavender in there, too. I don’t have an herb garden YET. This is also on my project list. We are set to build similar to the one pictured below. But yes, great mosquito repellent.

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Geranium

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Geraniums actually carry the fragrance of citronella in its foliage. (Citronella is actually a part of the geranium family). As with citronella, the plant itself does not deter mosquitoes. Crushing the leaves and rubbing them on skin and clothes will, however. They are great container plants for your porch.

DIY Bug Spray

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Essential Oils are a healthy, natural and quick way to create a bug spray. For the last couple of years I have used this combination and experienced great results. Add these ingredients to a spray bottle and bye bye bugs! ( I used a small spray bottle I found in the walmart travel size toiletry section)

Ingredients:

  • Distilled water
  • ½ teaspoon of apple cider vinegar
  • 20 drops organic lemongrass essential oil
  • 10 drops of rosemary essential oil
  • 5 drops of lavender essential oil
  • ½ teaspoon alcohol (helps preserve)

You can add other oils as well, like citronella essential oil. I just didn’t have any when I made it--this combination still worked wonders.

Try these out. You can thank me later :-) Enjoy Spring!