Did you know that a single backyard can host over 1 million mosquitoes?1 They can spoil outdoor fun and spread diseases like malaria and Zika. But, you have a natural ally – your garden. By planting certain flowers, you can turn your yard into a pleasant, pest-free place.

By planting citronella, lavender, and marigolds, you can naturally ward off mosquitoes.1 These plants have scents humans love but bugs hate. Mixing them in your garden makes it smell good and keeps pests away.

Key Takeaways

  • Mosquito-repelling plants are nature’s way of keeping bugs away from your outdoor area.
  • Plants like citronella, lavender, and marigolds deter mosquitoes with their pleasant fragrances.
  • Having a mix of these plants can turn your garden into a beautiful bug-free zone.
  • Mosquitoes can carry serious diseases, highlighting the need for natural pest control.
  • Choosing these plants is better for the environment than chemical sprays.


Mosquitoes can be more than a nuisance. They can spread dangerous diseases.2 Instead of using chemical sprays, consider planting mosquito-repelling plants. This is safe for your health and the environment.2 These plants keep bugs away and make your outdoor area beautiful with their colors and smells.1 Having these plants in your garden or patio means you can enjoy them without the bother of mosquitoes.

The Importance of Natural Mosquito Repellents

Over a million people die each year from diseases mosquitoes carry.2 Choosing natural ways to repel mosquitoes can protect your loved ones. This keeps them safe from both the bugs and any chemicals in sprays.2 Plants that repel mosquitoes are a safe and effective option to keep your outside areas bug-free.

Benefits of Growing Mosquito-Repelling Plants

Growing these plants does more than control mosquitoes. They bring beauty and good scents to your outdoor spaces.1 By planting various mosquito-repelling plants, you can turn your place into a lovely and fragrant spot. It will be free from pesky mosquitoes, letting you fully enjoy being outside with your family.

Citronella Grass and Lemongrass

Citronella grass and lemongrass are well-known for keeping mosquitoes away. They both have a strong lemon smell. This scent makes them really effective against flying bugs.1 Citronella grass is a key ingredient in many mosquito repellents because of its unique scent.1 The Brooklyn Botanic Garden suggests using citronella grass to avoid these insects.1 Plants like citronella are good at stopping bugs.1 Citronella grass is especially famous for repelling mosquitoes.3 Studies show lemongrass oil is better at this job than citronella oil.3 When using lemongrass oil, apply it every 30 to 60 minutes for the best results.

Understanding the Distinctive Lemon Scent

Citronella grass is great for outdoor areas because it looks nice and smells strong.3 EPA says lemongrass oil is safe and doesn’t have long-term side effects for keeping away bugs.3 It’s important to not use pure lemongrass oil directly on your skin.3 Mix it with a carrier oil for safe use externally. When used correctly, lemongrass oil can keep flying bugs away in the summer.

Ideal Growing Conditions for Citronella Grass

These plants do best in warm, sunny areas with good drainage.1 In colder places, grow citronella grass in large planters to avoid frost damage. In warmer places, you can plant it in the ground.1 Citronella grass loves zones 9 to 11 and is often grown yearly. With the right care, it can help keep mosquitoes away from your outdoor spaces.

Lavender: A Fragrant Mosquito Deterrent

Lavender is a great plant that keeps mosquitoes away. It’s because of the oils in its pretty, purple flowers and leaves. These oils make it hard for mosquitoes to find people. So, they stay clear of areas with lavender.1 Lavender loves hot and dry weather. This makes it perfect for gardens and patios where it’s warm.4 It not only fights off mosquitoes but also makes any garden look and smell better. For the best results, make sure your lavender gets enough sun and the soil drains well.

The Power of Lavender’s Essential Oils

The oils in lavender are what keep mosquitoes away. These special oils mess with the bugs’ senses. So, they can’t find us as easily.1 Some types of lavender, like ‘Provence’ and ‘Grosso,’ have a lot of camphor. This makes them even better at keeping insects off.4

Growing and Caring for Lavender Plants

Lavender does best in sunny, dry places with good drainage. It’s perfect for warm gardens and patios.1 To keep your lavender strong against pests, give it plenty of sun. Also, let the soil dry out between waterings. Trim the plant right, and it will keep making oils that scare off mosquitoes.

Adding lavender to your outdoor spots is a win-win. You get a sweet-smelling, beautiful area that’s also mosquito-free.14

Petunias: Nature’s Pesticide

petunias as natural pest control

Petunias are known as “nature’s pesticide” because they keep common garden pests away. These include aphids, tomato hornworms, and squash bugs. Plant them in gardens, flower beds, or in pots near where you hang out. They create a natural insect barrier.5 They love the sun and need well-drained soil. This makes them an easy, pretty way to fight bugs. Plus, they add beauty to your yard.6

Petunias as natural pest control is a smart choice. They keep mosquitoes away and brighten your space with color. Easy-to-grow mosquito-repelling annuals are perfect for a pest-free spot. Petunias are great at stopping various pests, making them essential. Every garden should have them for a peaceful, bug-free area.

Nasturtiums: Colorful and Insect-Repelling

Nasturtiums are bright, edible flowers. They make gardens look pretty and keep bugs away.7 These plants make a smell that bugs don’t like. So, insects such as whiteflies, squash bugs, and aphids stay away.7 Nasturtiums are a great pick because they’re beautiful and protect other plants from pests.7

The Airborne Chemical Defense of Nasturtiums

Nasturtiums have a special smell that keeps bugs off. It helps not just the flowers, but the plants around them, too.7 Adding these pretty flowers to your yard means less bugs and more beauty. It’s a win-win for everyone.5

Planting and Maintaining Nasturtiums

These flowers love full sun and well-drained soil.5 Plant them in spring and make sure they get enough water. Take off old flowers to help new ones grow.7 Nasturtiums don’t need a lot of work. They keep bugs away naturally and look great in your garden.5

Rosemary: A Versatile Herb and Bug Repellent

rosemary mosquito repellent

Rosemary is more than a tasty herb; it keeps bugs away, especially mosquitoes.5 Its strong, woody smell disagrees with mosquitoes and pests, making it perfect for any garden.5 This herb loves warm, dry places, and you can grow it in pots or in soil directly.5

Rosemary’s Woody Scent Deters Mosquitoes

Rosemary’s smell is a great bug repellent, especially for mosquitoes.5 It has a strong, piney scent that mosquitoes hate, acting like a natural border. Place rosemary plants strategically around your outdoor areas to ward off mosquitoes. Plus, it enhances your outdoor space with its beauty and use in cooking.

Growing Rosemary in Containers and Gardens

Rosemary is adaptable, growing in pots or in the ground.5 You can use it by itself, in groups, or as a hedge. Its lovely look and ability to keep bugs away make it a top choice. It needs sunlight and good drainage, thriving in warm spots.5 With just a little care and the right spot, rosemary is a super easy way to keep mosquitoes and other pests from bothering you.

Basil: A Double-Duty Herb and Pest Repellent

Basil doesn’t just spice up our food; it’s a great bug and pest deterrent too. Its strong smell, loved by many, keeps away mosquitoes, flies, and aphids. This quality makes basil perfect for gardens. It helps protect other plants from being eaten by bugs.

The Pungent Aroma that Keeps Pests at Bay

The oils in basil leaves, such as lime basil, holy basil, and sweet basil, are harmful to mosquitoes and their babies. This strong scent acts as a natural mosquito repellent, keeping these insects out of your yard.8

Incorporating Basil into Vegetable Gardens

Basil grows well in sunlight and damp soil. It fits easily in gardens, from the ground to pots. Planting basil near your veggies acts as a protective shield. This lessens the harm pests can cause to your plants.9

mosquito repellent plants: A Natural Solution

Mosquito-repelling plants are a great way to keep insects away naturally. They include lemon-scented citronella, lemongrass, lavender, and rosemary.1 Placing these plants near sitting areas and entrances helps make your space mosquito-free.1 You can mix these plants to make your outdoor area smell great and keep mosquitoes away.

Varieties of Mosquito-Repelling Plants

Many plants repel mosquitoes and come in different colors and scents. These include the flowers of lavender and marigolds, the smell of rosemary, and the tropical feel of citronella grass.1 You can use these plants to make your outdoors smell good and keep pests off.10

Creating a Fragrant and Pest-Free Outdoor Space

Selecting the right mosquito-repelling plants can make your outdoor areas mosquito-free. Mix low and high plants to create a lush and pest-free spot for relaxation.1 With their lovely looks and mosquito-repelling abilities, these solutions are good for the environment. They help you enjoy the outdoors without mosquitoes.

Geraniums: Lemon-Scented Pest Control

Scented geraniums, often called the “mosquito plant” or “citronella plant,” blend a citrus scent with beautiful geranium blossoms.11 Their strong lemon smell is great for keeping pests like mosquitoes away.1 These plants grow well in many areas, making them perfect for a pest-free outdoor space.1 They work whether planted in the soil or kept in pots, keeping your outdoor areas bug-free.

The Power of Scented Geraniums

11 Some types of scented geraniums, like Lime, Lemon, and Citronella geraniums, can scare off mosquitoes.11 Pelargonium citrosum, known as the “mosquito plant,” gives off a similar smell to citronella when its leaves are crushed.12 The citronella geranium was once thought to be a mix of African rose-scented geranium and Chinese citronella grass. But it’s actually a type of scented geranium that smells like citronella oil.12 Lemon thyme and lemon balm are even better at repelling mosquitoes than citronella geraniums.

Growing Geraniums in Various Climates

1 Scented geraniums grow well in many climates, each type needing different care.1 Lavender, rosemary, and scented geraniums can last from zones 3 to 11, for example.11 Marigold flowers are great for warmer areas.

11 Citronella geraniums can get about 24 inches tall and wide, with pretty pink and magenta flowers.12 Online, some say citronella geraniums keep mosquitoes away, but many studies and stories say they don’t.

Bee Balm: Attracting Pollinators and Repelling Pests

Bee balm, known as Monarda or horsemint, is a great plant. It attracts bees and butterflies. It also keeps away mosquitoes and other bugs.13 Its leaves have a smell mosquitoes don’t like. This makes your yard a nicer place to be.14

The Fragrant Leaves of Bee Balm

It grows best in sunny spots with good drainage. It blooms in vibrant colors like red, pink, and purple. This makes your garden both pretty and friendly to pollinators.13Besides pushing mosquitoes away, its scent draws bees, butterflies, and hummingbirds. This creates a lively garden.

Incorporating Bee Balm into Your Garden

Adding bee balm to your yard has many pluses. You get a natural way to repel mosquitoes. Plus, you help bees and butterflies thrive in your area.14 The beautiful flowers and sweet smell turn your space into a lovely, bug-free spot for you and your family.13


Mosquito-repelling plants are a great way to keep pests away from your outdoor spaces. They have a refreshing smell that not only beautifies but also serves as a natural pest control. Citronella, lemongrass, lavender, rosemary, and basil are just a few examples. You can plant them in your garden or place in pots around your patio to keep mosquitoes at bay. Doing this not only makes your outdoors pleasant but also helps pollinators thrive.1516

Choosing the right plants and caring for them can turn your yard into a peaceful haven. For example, neem, basil, and lemon eucalyptus can repel mosquitoes effectively. There are also plants like Mexican marigold, lemongrass, and rosemary that are natural insect repellents. Adding these plants to your outdoor area will make it not just smell wonderful but also keep mosquitoes away. This way, you and your family can fully enjoy your time outside without the worry of pests.

Source Links

  1. https://www.gardendesign.com/plants/mosquito-repellent.html
  2. https://www.earth.com/earthpedia-articles/mosquito-repellent-plants-for-your-garden-and-skin/
  3. https://bestbeebrothers.com/blogs/blog/lemongrass-vs-citronella-what-fights-mosquitoes-the-best
  4. https://www.hgtv.com/outdoors/flowers-and-plants/ten-plants-mosquitoes-dont-like-pictures
  5. https://www.realsimple.com/home-organizing/gardening/outdoor/plants-that-repel-bugs
  6. https://www.dripworks.com/blog/10-best-pest-repelling-plants-that-keeps-the-bugs-away
  7. https://mirimichigreen.com/learn/blog/top-8-plants-repel-bugs-mosquitoes/
  8. https://bestbeebrothers.com/blogs/blog/plants-that-deter-mosquitoes
  9. https://www.almanac.com/plants-repel-mosquitoes-and-insects
  10. https://www.thespruce.com/plants-that-repel-mosquitoes-4583885
  11. https://www.lubbockonline.com/story/lifestyle/home-garden/2018/06/12/peffley-do-scented-geraniums-repel-pesky-mosquitoes/11995345007/
  12. https://davesgarden.com/guides/articles/view/4983
  13. https://extension.psu.edu/programs/master-gardener/counties/york/native-plants/fact-sheets/attract-beneficial-insects-to-your-garden-using-these-amazing-native-pollinator-plants
  14. https://www.villagesatfortirwin.com/blog/2023/6/14/creating-a-buzz-in-the-mojave-desert-bug-repelling-and-pollinator-friendly-plants-for-your-garden
  15. https://rcwnurseries.com/myth-busting/
  16. https://alaskamastergardener.community.uaf.edu/2016/06/25/mosquito-repellent-plants-help-or-hype/

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