Flower Information Garden Plants

Best Plants to Repel Mosquitoes

lavender plants to repel mosquitoes

Spending time outside and enjoying the beautiful weather is one of the best ways to celebrate summer. However, with the summer also comes those pesky mosquitoes that threaten to thwart your outdoor plans and leave you uncomfortably itchy for weeks.

Thankfully, dousing yourself with mosquito repellent spray isn’t the only way to keep mosquitoes out of your outdoor space. Numerous plants help repel mosquitoes naturally. You can use them to create a barrier around your outdoor area that helps keep the mosquitoes at bay. Read on to learn the best plants that repel mosquitoes.

What Plants Get Rid of Mosquitoes Naturally?

Several plants can repel mosquitoes, keeping the pesky insects away from your home and yard. Here are the top mosquito repellent plants to add to your outdoor space this summer.

citronella plant with a jar of citronella oil

Citronella Grass

Zone: 9 to 11
Sunlight needs: Direct sunlight
Blooms in: Summer to fall
If you’ve ever heard of burning citronella candles to repel mosquitoes, you can understand how citronella grass is also an effective mosquito repellent.
Citronella grass, also known as lemongrass, is a natural ingredient in most insect repellants. This low-maintenance plant produces a strong lemony scent that mosquitoes hate, keeping them away from your yard. You can also upcycle your Bouqs mason jar to make a citronella candle.

Basil Plants

Zone: 10 – 11
Sunlight needs: Frequent sunlight
Blooms in: Summer to frost
Basil is a fragrant herb that produces a strong scent mosquitoes dislikes. You can plant basil in pots on your patio or in your garden alongside other herbs and veggies.
This herb can serve double duty in your home: repel mosquitoes and provide a tasty culinary herb to add to dishes. Basil leaves go great in Italian dishes and produce a pleasant scent to enhance your outdoor gathering.

Eucalyptus Plants

Zone: 8 – 11
Sunlight needs: Full sun
Blooms in: Summer
Eucalyptus is a fragrant, sweet-scented plant that repels mosquitoes from yards. This plant produces beautiful blue-green leaves and can range in height from a few inches to over 60 feet.
You can plant a small eucalyptus plant in a pot full of rich soil to keep mosquitoes at bay. Because these plants prefer warmer weather, we recommend taking your pot indoors once the temperatures drop at the end of the summer.

Marigold Flowers

Zone: 2 – 11
Sunlight needs: Full sun
Blooms in: Late spring until fall
Marigolds are beautiful, vibrant flowers that produce fragrant oils to repel mosquitoes. These flowers can add a pop of color to your patio or prevent insects from invading your other outdoor plants. Many people also line their vegetable gardens with marigold.

Marigolds are relatively easy to grow and require minimal maintenance. You can often find these colorful flowers in hanging pots at greenhouses or grocery stores, creating a convenient way to block mosquitoes from entering your gathering space.

Bee Balm

Zone: 4 – 8
Sunlight needs: Partial or full sun
Blooms in: Late summer
Bee balm is a colorful flowering plant that attracts bees and butterflies while repelling mosquitoes and pests. These plants produce pink and purple flowers that resemble dandelions in shape. They’re an excellent addition to your flowerbed or to place in pots around your patio. While bee balm can repel mosquitoes naturally, you can also crush its leaves between your fingers to release its essential oils.

Lemon Balm

Zone: 3 – 7
Sunlight needs: Partial sun or shade
Blooms in: Summer
Mosquitoes dislike strong scents, and lemon is one of their least favorite. Lemon balm produces a strong lemon scent that smells refreshing to humans and is especially distasteful to mosquitoes. This herb is from the mint family and can also be used to flavor summer salads and other dishes.
Lemon balm is an invasive species, so it’s best grown in pots or containers rather than in your garden.

Catnip

Zone: 3 – 9
Sunlight needs: Full sun
Blooms in: Late spring through fall
Catnip, also known as catmint, is a mosquito-repelling plant from the mint family that produces vibrant purple flowers. It’s effortless to grow, and it can quickly invade other garden areas when you plant it in the ground.

Catnip acts as a feline attractant and a mosquito repellant. If you have stray cats in your neighborhood, you may see a few furry friends frequent your patio once you set out this herb. However, it’s also great at keeping mosquitoes away from your outdoor spaces.

Mint

Zone: 5 – 8
Sunlight needs: Partial sun
Blooms in: Summer to fall
You may have heard that peppermint oil acts as an effective mosquito repellent. However, planting mint plants in your garden or in pots around your patio has a similar effect.

This plant’s leaves can produce a strong fragrance that acts as mosquito control while keeping your outdoor spaces smelling fresh. You can also crush a few mint leaves and rub them on your exposed skin in place of mosquito-repelling spray.

Lavender Plant

Zone: 5 – 11
Sunlight needs: Full sun
Blooms in: Summer to fall
Lavender is a beautiful, fragrant herb that can keep away mosquitoes and other pests. This herb has a lovely fragrance and pretty purple flowers that ward off mosquitoes. Some researchers even believe that lavender can prevent mosquitoes from smelling.
Lavender is drought-resistant and easy to care for, making it suitable for beginners. However, any master gardener can enjoy lavender as part of their garden.

Citronella / Scented Geraniums

Zone: 10 – 11
Sunlight needs: Direct sunlight
Blooms in: Spring to fall
The citronella geranium is a flowering citronella plant with a strong lemon scent. The citronella oil in these plants can keep several insects away. These plants also look attractive, with soft green leaves and tie-dye pink flowers.

Lantana Camara

Zone: 7 and above
Sunlight needs: Full, direct sunlight
Blooms in: Summer to fall
The Lantana Camara is a flowering plant that can attract butterflies and hummingbirds while giving off a mosquito-repelling scent. These insect-repelling plants thrive in sunny locations such as backyard gardens or south-facing windowsills. While they perform best in warm climates, they can also survive during the summer months in milder temperatures.

Rosemary

Zone: 7 to 10
Sunlight needs: Full sun
Blooms in: Spring to fall
Rosemary is a versatile herb with tall green stalks and tiny purple flowers.
These mosquito-repelling plants give off a woody, natural scent that is unappealing to mosquitoes. When you keep this plant as a mosquito plant, you can also benefit from its culinary benefits. Placing a few sprigs of rosemary in pastas and soups can add a fresh earthiness that reminds you of summer.

Floss Flower

Zone: 9 – 10
Sunlight needs: Full sun to partial shade
Blooms in: Spring to fall
The floss flower is a lush, fluffy flowering plant that can provide mild mosquito-repelling qualities. If you decide to include a few plants in your garden or patio planter, be sure to keep them out of reach of children and animals, as they can be toxic.

Do Plants That Repel Mosquitoes Really Work?

If you’ve never used plants that repel mosquitoes, you may be a little skeptical of their effectiveness. However, you can feel confident that the mosquito-repellent plants listed do ward off mosquitoes — to an extent.

The mosquito population searches for its victims — humans and animals — by detecting the carbon dioxide that flows from our pores. Masking the carbon dioxide scent with other fragrances can often lead mosquitoes to search for other victims.

The mosquito-repellent plants on our list, along with several other plants, have strong, natural fragrances that can effectively mask the scents of humans and other animals. However, many of these mosquito repellants also contain fragrances that mosquitoes do not like, encouraging the mosquitoes to fly elsewhere.

While mosquito-repellent plants are not foolproof, they can act as a natural alternative to wearing harsh bug spray in some cases. An even more powerful way to use these plants is to either extract the oil or rub the leaves on your skin. It may sound strange, but it can work! However, if you live in an area particularly dense with mosquitoes, you may want to combine these plants that repel mosquitoes with other, more powerful solutions.

Other Natural Ways to Repel Mosquitoes

You can also rid your garden of mosquitoes using other natural methods. You can read more on how to disrupt mosquitoes’ lifecyles. Here are a few techniques to naturally repel mosquitoes:

  • Eliminate standing water: Standing water is a breeding ground for mosquito larvae. Be sure to dump out any pots of water or old baby pools to prevent mosquitoes from laying eggs in your yard.
  • Burn sage and rosemary in your fire pit: Burning a few fragrant herbs, such as sage and rosemary, can emit smoke that is unpleasant to mosquitoes. If you’re already planning a gathering around the campfire, why not throw a few sprigs of these herbs into the mix to ward off mosquitoes?
  • Rub garlic gloves on the skin: Mosquitoes hate the smell of garlic. While consuming garlic won’t necessarily ward off these pests, rubbing a few cloves on your skin could do the trick.
  • Use natural insect repellent sprays: You can find many natural products in stores that use essential oils to keep mosquitoes away. In many cases, these sprays can be just as effective as chemical repellents.

Altogether, using the above methods can help prevent mosquitoes from spoiling your outdoor gathering and protect you and your family against mosquito-borne diseases. Whether you’re looking to order plants online or just up your gardening game, The Bouqs has you covered. You can also consider houseplants that don’t need much sunlight and learn about the best flowering ground cover plants.

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