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How to Get Rid of Mosquitoes Without Chemicals

Updated on February 4, 2016

Ways to Repel Mosquitoes Without DEET

It's hot and the long lazy days of summer are here and so are our pesky friends ..... mosquitoes. Mosquitoes can ruin your outdoor fun. There's nothing worse that having that buzzzzzzz in your ear, that bite on your arm, and all you can do is keep slapping away at them, but they keep coming back.

There are many different ways to control mosquitoes. Growing plants that mosquitoes don't like is a natural way that works to keep mosquitoes out of your yard.

You can also make your own mosquito spray out of the oils from most of these plants. The spray that you make can be used the same way that you use a store bought mosquito repellent. A great alternative to using DEET which is in most commercial mosquito sprays.

Plants That Repel Mosquitoes

Reduce Mosquitoes

Ward off mosquitoes by planting flowers and plants that naturally repel them. It's one of the easiest and best ways to control mosquitoes that you can do quite simply. When you don't want to use a mosquito repellent with harsh chemicals, plants are a wonderful and natural alternative.

© karpati | morgueFile
© karpati | morgueFile


Lavender has been used for centuries as a bug repellent. You might even remember seeing lavender in your Grandmother's closet to keep the moths away. Bugs don't like the smell of lavender but humans don't seem to mind it. The lavender plant produces beautiful, tall, purple blossoms that will look very attractive in your garden.

© Georges Jansoone  | CC BY-SA 3.0
© Georges Jansoone | CC BY-SA 3.0

Lemon Balm

Also Known as Horse Mint

Lemon Balm smells similar to citronella, which mosquitoes also don't like. The plant is very hardy and easy to grow. In fact it grows so easily that it should be planted in a container so it doesn't take over your garden. Lemon Balm can be quite invasive. Bees and butterflies aren't repelled by the plant so they'll still visit your garden but the mosquitoes will stay away.

© clarita | morgueFile
© clarita | morgueFile


Basil, a leafy green plant, gives off a scent without being touched. You can rub basil leaves directly on your skin as a mosquito repellent. Basil is an annual and a herb that is used in many Italian food dishes. Basil grows best in warm climates, and also does well as a house plant.

© Hakcipta Yosri - Dibebaskan di bawah | CC BY 2.0
© Hakcipta Yosri - Dibebaskan di bawah | CC BY 2.0

Citronella Grass

This ornamental grass has a strong smell which mosquitoes don't like. Citronella is commonly used in candles and in many plant based natural insect repellents.Research has proven that citronella is quite effective to deter mosquitoes away. It's best planted near sitting areas where people gather.

Mosquito Bite?

How to stop a mosquito bite from itching? The best cure for mosquito bites is a topical antihistamine such as Benadryl. If you don't have an antihistamine handy, toothpaste often works to temporarily take your mind off the itch.

© di37 | morgueFile
© di37 | morgueFile


Gardeners have known for years that Marigolds deter insects when planted in vegetable gardens. These colorful flowers that are yellow to dark orange, will also repel mosquitoes with their unpleasant smell. Many humans don't like their smell either. They can be planted in containers and moved around as needed. A great anti-mosquito plant.

© Jon Sullivan | Public Domain
© Jon Sullivan | Public Domain


Catnip repels mosquitoes, but you also may attract many of the neighborhood cats. I've tried to grow Catnip several times, but have never been successful because it never fails that some cat comes along and rolls all over the plant. So if you try it, plant it somewhere that cats can't lay and roll all over it.

Catnip is better than DEET at repelling mosquitoes. It's also known to deter termites and cockroaches.

Make Your Own Mosquito Repellent

Natural Mosquito Spray

Making your own mosquito spray is actually quite easy. Just crush or grind a handful of leaves with a mortar and pestle from any of the plants above. The oil that is produced can then be added to 1/2 cup of vodka, which is also a mosquito repellent. Let the mixture sit for at least 12 hours and then you can put the mixture into a spray bottle, or rub it on your skin and you'll have a natural mosquito repellent that works the same as the expensive store bought mosquito spray.

© hotblack | morgueFile
© hotblack | morgueFile

Using Garlic for Mosquito Repellent

Garlic Repels Mosquitoes

Garlic is effective at getting rid of mosquitoes when used as a spray. Some people swear by it, but quite frankly it is very smelly so you usually end up repelling people too. You can use the garlic spray to spray around your lawn, garden, and any standing pools of water. Garlic mosquito spray is safe to use around kids and animals.

Garlic Mosquito Spray Recipe - Make Your Own Mosquito Spray With Garlic

You will need:

  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 2 hot peppers
  • 1 tablespoon dish soap
  • 1 gallon milk container
  • water

  1. Finely chop the garlic and the hot peppers and mix together in a bowl.
  2. Add 1 Tbsp dish soap to the mixture.
  3. Grind the mixture of garlic cloves, hot peppers, and dish soap together with the back of a spoon.
  4. Fill half of the milk container with water and pour in the crushed mixture.
  5. Put the cap on the milk container and shake up the mixture.
  6. Top up the rest of the milk container with water and shake again.
  7. Leave the mixture to sit overnight.
  8. The next day fill a spray bottle half full with water and then fill the rest of the spray bottle with the mixture from the milk container.
  9. Use the diluted mixture in the spray bottle the same as you would a commercial mosquito spray.
  10. Store the undiluted mixture in the milk container for future use.

Natural Mosquito Spray - DEET Free Mosquito Repellant

DEET is a harmful chemical and there is a warning label not to reapply it until a number of hours have passed. These are some of the natural alternatives to using DEET:

Kill Mosquitoes Without Harmful Chemicals - Electronic Mosquito Zappers

Another way to kill mosquitoes without using harsh chemicals is to buy a bug zapper. The electronic mosquito traps kill the mosquitoes when they fly into them.

What do you do to get rid of mosquitoes? - Or just leave a note to say you stopped by

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      esichrissa 5 years ago

      very funny.. garlic is effective against blood feeding mosquitoes and blood suckling vampires. I like the smell of cooked garlic but I don't like its raw smell.

      I'll focus on searching the other plants. Lavender looks interesting plus it has anti-stress or relaxing properties. Thanks for identifying and sharing the list! Good job!

    • LiteraryMind profile image

      Ellen Gregory 5 years ago from Connecticut, USA

      I try everything an anything. My friend says I am her insect repellent. When I am around all the mosquitoes go for me instead of anyone else. Never tried garlic though. thanks for all the advice

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      BeyondRoses 5 years ago

      Love your ways to Repel Mosquitoes Naturally. The Lavender is lovely. The Marigold and Catnip is an interesting way. Wonder if the Catnip will attract all the neighborhood cats. :) I got a plant for my cat, and she wants nothing to do with it, but she loves catnip critter toys. I hate mosquitoes too. It seems there's always one waiting to dart in the door with me. I try to track him down, because he'll follow me everywhere, or hide and start Buzzzz me when I'm ready to go to sleep.