18 Plants That Repel Mosquitoes

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The time of the year is fast approaching when bugs of all kinds will be in full force. Mosquitoes are possibly the most common pests during warmer weather.

If you are looking for natural ways to kill mosquitoes, you’ve come to the right place. Here are 18 plants that repel mosquitoes.

Mosquito biting skin

Plants That Repel Mosquitoes


Allium is a bulb plant that can be planted in the spring. They have become a popular choice with gardeners because they are attractive and easy to grow. Alliums are very adaptable and trouble-free.

There are many different types of Alliums, but two of the most common that you will recognize are garlic and onion.



Aside from being a wonderful thing to cook with, garlic can also be used to repel mosquitoes. With its strong scent, mosquitoes don’t like to come near. They are very attractive to the eye, so you may enjoy planting them in your flower bed and even harvesting the garlic to use in your kitchen.

You can also try cutting up several cloves of garlic and placing them around the outside of your house. Or, you can make a yard spray by soaking garlic for a few hours in some water and then spraying it around your yard.

If you can brave the strong smell, the garlic could be mixed with natural aromatic oils to make a mosquito repelling body spray.



If you are desperate to keep the mosquitoes at bay, try planting some onions, too. Of course, you can plant them in your vegetable garden to keep the mosquitoes away while you work. But you may also consider placing a few around your house. Onion could be applied in the same way as garlic to help repel the mosquitoes.

Alliums are also very handy in vegetable gardens to keep aphids, slugs, and cabbage worms away.



Basil is a common herb used in cooking, but it can also come in handy if you’re trying to keep mosquitoes away. The smell of basil is strong, and mosquitoes don’t like these herbs. The smell is so strong in fact that you don’t even have to prepare the leaves in any special way for it to be effective. Just planting basil around your house can help.

Basil is also toxic to the larvae of the mosquitoes, so it is a good idea to place some where you have any standing water to keep the mosquitoes from choosing that place to lay their eggs. Of course, the best thing would be to eliminate any standing water from around your house. But, if this can’t be done, basil can help.

There are several different kinds of basil, but you should know that all kinds are effective mosquito repelling plants. So, you should feel free to experiment with it to find which one is best for your flower beds.

Applying crushed basil to your skin will keep mosquitoes from biting you. A spray can also be made that will help repel the pests. Alcohol is sometimes used in these recipes, so be careful to keep them out of reach of children.

Bee Balm

bee balm

Placing this pollinator-attracting plant in your flower bed will bring the butterflies, bees, and hummingbirds calling. But mosquitoes hate it. You may know bee balm as horsemint or bergamot. These are just other names for bee balm.

The nice thing about bee balm is that it has other uses, too. It is safe for your skin, so if you enjoy making skin cream or sprays, this is a great option that could also keep mosquitoes away from your body. You could also use it in your cooking or to make tea.

The oil of the bergamot plant is very effective at killing mosquito larvae. So, if you find any larvae around your house, consider using this to kill it.

The oil can also be diffused into a room as a repellent. This may be a wonderful option to use while sleeping.



As the name may remind you, catnip is commonly known for attracting cats. This is because of the chemical nepetalactone found in the plant. But what you may not know is that this chemical is a very effective mosquito repellent.

Researchers have found that nepetalactone is more effective than DEET, the chemical used in many insect repellant sprays. It is also much healthier and safer than DEET, so this option is used often by those who wish to eliminate unnecessary toxins and chemicals from their lives.

If you decide to plant some catnip, you may want to consider placing it in an area that you don’t mind cats coming to. Also, catnip is a very low maintenance plant, but it can take over a flower bed quickly, so consider planting it in an area that you don’t mind the invasion.

The front of your house may not be the best option, but you could try placing it near a vegetable garden or near any areas in your yard where you like to hang out.


field of Chrysanthemums to keep mosquitos away

Chrysanthemums, or mums for short, or very commonly used in flower gardens. But did you know that these beautiful flowers are very good at keeping the mosquitoes away? They are easy to take care of, making them a low maintenance option for repelling mosquitoes. Typically, they bloom for a long time, providing longer protection than some other plants.

Mums are very attractive as a border or look wonderful in a planter on the porch or in the sun. they are also very good at repelling these:

  • Ants
  • Silverfish
  • Ticks
  • Fleas
  • Spider mites



Citronella is a common ingredient in mosquito-repelling candles and is also found in some sprays. It emits a very strong scent that hides other scents attractive to mosquitoes. Most people find the scent very attractive. Lucky for you, citronella is another plant that requires very little maintenance, making it an easy solution to your mosquito problem.

Citronella candles can often be found in the outdoors/camping section of stores and are an effective way to avoid mosquito bites while enjoying time outside.

Floss Flower

floss flowers

This attractive flower has a chemical named coumarin. Coumarin is a common ingredient in mosquito repellants and commercial pesticides, so the beautiful flowers could be a nice way to keep mosquitoes away from any area you are trying to protect. They also attract more wanted life, such as butterflies.

Because they are attractive, they are a great option to place in your flowerbeds by your house. They form tight mounds that make them nice plants to use for borders and edging. Floss flowers are normally grown as an annual in the United States.


bunch of lavender

Lavender is a very attractive plant that puts off a pleasant scent for humans. But mosquitoes don’t feel the same way, so it can be quite effective to keep those pests away. Lavender is also very hardy, so it will make a nice addition to any flower bed.

In addition to this, lavender is effective in keeping spiders, moths, flies, and fleas away. An oil made from the flowers also repels bed bugs.

Lavender comes in different varieties, and each variety will grow better in a different climate. So, be sure to check which type would be best for the area you live in before buying it.

Sometimes, it is enough to wear perfume or lotion that has a lavender scent, since this is what repels the mosquitoes. But if you want the benefit of the plant’s beauty added to your garden, you can expect a reduction of the mosquito population around your house.

Lemon Balm

lemon balm

Lemon balm is commonly used for its medicinal purposes, including stress reduction and to help with stomach issues. It is said to have a sedative effect due to its chemical makeup. Since citrus scents tend to repel mosquitoes, it is also a mosquito repellant plant.

But you should keep in mind that lemon balm is a very invasive plant, so it may be wise to keep it away from certain flower beds if an invasive species isn’t something you like.

There are recipes available to make a bug repellant spray with lemon balm. Skin cream can also be made. These can be effective for repelling mosquitoes, too, if you or your loved ones are planning to spend some time outdoors.


field of lemon grass

Lemon verbena is a common name for this citral containing plant. Citral is another common mosquito repellant ingredient, so this plant is naturally effective at keeping them at bay. This ingredient is also often found in mosquito candles.

The lemongrass plant is a wonderful plant to have around, but studies have shown that it is the essential oil form that is most effective at repelling mosquitoes. One study from 2011 using multiple species of mosquito found that up to 95 percent of mosquitoes from one species were repelled due to the oil’s strong odor over a two-and-a-half-hour period.

It can also be used in cooking and has a lovely lemon flavor. However, it should be noted that lemongrass has been shown to cause birth defects, so pregnant women should try to stay away.

Lemon Thyme

lemon thyme

Because of its natural citrus scent, lemon thyme repels mosquitoes. While it makes a nice addition to a flower bed, the plant itself won’t actually repel mosquitoes. The leaves must be bruised to give off the aroma that acts as the repellent.

You can also use it as a repellant for yourself by crushing some of the leaves to rub on your body. The citrus scent will keep the mosquitoes away and protect you from contracting any sicknesses they may be carrying. West Nile and dengue are a couple of examples.

It would be wise to test the plant on a small area of your body before applying to a larger area to be sure you aren’t allergic to the plant oils. But, if you don’t react, be sure to place it on the areas of your body that tend to receive the most bites.


marigold flower

In addition to being a great edging plant for gardens, this plant makes a great mosquito repellant. It isn’t called “nature’s insecticide” for nothing as it also tends to repel deer and rabbits. The flowers are also edible for humans.

Marigolds contain pyrethrum, which is used in many insect repellents. The plant is also very good at keeping insects away from tomato plants, so many people choose to plant them in their gardens to keep them from eating the fresh fruits.

Marigold is very easy to grow, so if you don’t have a green thumb, it may be a good option for a natural mosquito repellent.



Mint is another very invasive plant. It is an attractive ground cover that mosquitoes hate. Consider planting it in an area that you don’t mind it taking over. They need full sun to part shade. You can also expect to see fewer spiders with mint around.

If a mosquito slips through your safeguards and bites you, mint is a great itch reliever. It is nice to have for cooking, too and makes a delicious tea.

All types of mint are effective at repelling mosquitoes. The most common kinds are peppermint and spearmint.



This is another natural mosquito repellent. You can plant it around your yard if you wish, but it should be noted that the oil of this plant is toxic to humans, so exercise caution. The leaves and stems also keep ticks and fleas away from your pets.

If you are looking for a way to keep the mosquitoes away from yourself, you can put some pennyroyal in your pocket to keep them away.

Mosquitoes aren’t the only pests that pennyroyal repels. It can also help to keep flies at bay.



If you have an herb garden, you may already have rosemary. This is a popular herb used for seasoning many different dishes. But it also keeps mosquitoes away.

If you want an attractive plant that is still effective at keeping mosquitoes away, rosemary is a great choice. This plant can be pruned into different shapes and sizes, so it makes a great border or decoration in your garden.

Just having the plant around can help, but it is also effective to throw a bit of rosemary into a fire if you are sitting outside. The aroma acts as a wonderful repellent.

It also has wonderful benefits for skin and hair and is a common ingredient in many self-care products. Aromatherapy is another common use for rosemary.



Sage is another plant that is great for repelling mosquitoes. The plant itself isn’t always very effective, but burning it works wonders. Throw a bit of sage into your firepit if you plan to sit outside. The mosquitoes don’t care for the smell and will stay away. Sage is also very useful in cooking. Some cultures use it in certain spiritual cleansing rituals.

When the sage is crushed, its oils are released. These oils can be rubbed onto your skin to keep the mosquitoes from biting you and spreading any disease they may be carrying. It’s as simple as crushing some of the leaves between your fingers and rubbing them on your skin.

Scented Geranium


Chances are that you already have geraniums in your flower bed. If that is the case, you will be pleased to know that mosquitoes hate the scent of geraniums. If you don’t have any, consider planting some. The flowers are beautiful, but the leaves are what repels mosquitoes by emitting a strong scent similar to citronella.

They grow best in warm and dry climates, but you can still grow them in planters if you live in a cold climate. It will take a little bit more work to keep them properly pruned, but the benefits may be worth it.

The oil of scented geraniums also has medicinal purposes for the skin and is sometimes used to prevent scarring.



This plant can work wonders when it comes to keeping bugs away from your home and/or garden. Mosquitoes are not exempt. It gives off a menthol aroma. Wormwood can be grown in your garden or flower bed, and its aroma keeps mosquitoes away.

A spray can also be made from the wormwood essential oil. You can spray it around the outside of your house or in your garden to keep insects away and repel mosquitoes. There are plenty of tutorials available on YouTube to show you the best way to make these sprays, or you can purchase them from different sources.

Wormwood can also be purchased to spread around outside your house if you don’t wish to grow it yourself.

Other Ways To Control Mosquitoes

Truly keeping mosquitoes under control around your home means breaking the life cycle.

Once you break the life cycle and keep it broken – then you will have truly solved your mosquito problem.

The simplest method to break the life cycle is to remove mosquitoes breeding habitat.

Check out these other posts that will help:

What Is Your Favorite Mosquito Repellant Plant?

If you find you are having a problem with mosquitoes, these plants can help keep them at bay. With many to choose from, you can pick the plants you like best.

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Aaron is the founder of and Essential Home and Garden. With over 15 years of hands-on experience in home ownership, lawn care, and gardening, Aaron is a seasoned expert in areas like lawn care, DIY, HVAC, and pest control.

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