So the rain has begun to slow, spring is budding and I begin to think about biting insects. I often call myself bug candy. If there is a biting insect within a mile of me I get bit.
First Line of Defense
The first line of defense is to destroy their habitat. Empty planters and other items that are holding water. Fountains and ponds should be treated. Dump out any standing water you find, or better yet, remove the breeding habitat completely. Look in places you aren’t expecting such as tires, swings and hidden spots that have created a mini puddle.
Second Line of Defense – Your Garden
Yes! There are plants that repel mosquites. Planting a mix of these plants around your home and patio can create mosquito free zones for outdoor entertaining and other activities.
One of the most famous mosquito-repelling plants is citronella grass, which is used by manufacturers to make citronella tiki oil and candles.
Another well-known mosquito repelling plant is marigolds. These cheery flowers repel many other insect pests as well, but are popular nectar sources for butterflies.
Catnip is famous for attracting cats, but what is less well known is that it also repels mosquitoes! In fact, studies have found that catnip oil is more than 10 times better at repelling mosquitoes than DEET!
The lovely and aromatic garden herbs:
rosemary, basil, lavender, lemon balm, and lemongrass are also effective mosquito repellents.
More plants that repel mosquitoes:
- bee balm/bergamot
There are two different kinds of plants commonly sold as “mosquito plants.” One is a type of geranium that has been genetically modified to produce citronella oil. The other is Agastache cana, also known as Giant Hyssop, Bubblegum Mint, or Hummingbird Mint.
Third Line of Defense – is you can’t fight mother nature
The rivers, streams and trees create their own spaces for mosquitos to grow. They are part of our environment and our travel environment.
So how to fight back?
A few searches later and I find the most talked about natural deterrent is B-1 aka Thiamin.
It’s not been scientifically proven yet there are many other reasons to have a diet high in B Vitamins. It’s hard to add the suggested levels of B Vitamin to your diet through foods. There are just not enough rich enough in them to eat even to RDA levels. Boost your B with a smoothie and a boost of Smoothie Essentials Multi-Vitamin
Try this Smoothie!
Banana Peach Berry Smoothie:
1 cup blueberries
1 cup rice, almond or non-fatmilk (substitute with juice of your choice if you don’t want to use milk)
1 cup ice chips
½ cup peaches
1 tablespoon flaxseed
Dollop of honey
Sprinkle of ginger root (season to taste)
Sprinkle of nutmeg (season to taste)
Ginger root: Stimulates the circulatory system, increasing blood flow.
Honey: Honey is rich in vitamin B.
A herbal necklace or oils of the above herbs. If using oil don’t forget that they need a carrier oil and that essential oils should not be applied directly to the skin.
Skin So Soft by Avon – original scent is often used successfully.
Use this list of items and activities that attract mosquitoes as a list of things to avoid or that can be used as bait to lure mosquitoes away from you.
- Dark ClothingMany mosquitoes use vision to locate hosts from a distance. Dark clothes and foliage are initial attractants.
- Carbon DioxideYou give off more carbon dioxide when you are hot or have been exercising. A burning candle or other fire is another source of carbon dioxide.
- Lactic AcidYou release more lactic acid when you have been exercising or after eating certain foods (e.g., salty foods, high-potassium foods).
- Floral or Fruity FragrancesIn addition to perfumes, hair products, and scented sunscreens, watch for the subtle floral fragrance from fabric softeners and dryer sheets.
- Skin TemperatureThe exact temperature depends on the type of mosquito. Many mosquitoes are attracted to the slightly cooler temperatures of the extremities.
- MoistureMosquitoes are attracted by perspiration because of the chemicals it contains and also because it increases the humidity around your body. Even small amounts of water (e.g., moist plants or mud puddles) will draw mosquitoes. Standing water also allows mosquitoes to reproduce.
May this year be happier and bite free!