Plant – Based Insect Repellents
Insects. As much as we need them, they can be quite a nuisance. Although insect repellents abound, far too few are ecologically friendly. Most are composed of harsh and potentially harmful chemicals, with warning labels worthy of any horror story. The good news? Just as nature provides us with an overabundance of insects, it also provides us with all-natural, plant-based remedies to drive them back from whence they came. Whether your home is under assault from ants, aphids, caterpillars, flies, mosquitos or other creepy crawlies, don’t worry: mother nature has your back.
One common, natural insect repellent is also a common food ingredient. Spearmints not only a delicious flavoring for chewing, it also drives away several many common insects. Ants, for example, are a common problem for many household owners. No matter how many traps we leave for them, they seem to find their way in. Spearmint sachets placed strategically in different locations around your home will cause ants to reconsider their venture. Spearmint works well on several other insects that can commonly find their way into your home, including moths and fleas. Likewise, mixing spearmint oil with water in a spray bottle can help to alleviate an aphid or cabbage butterfly problem in your garden.
The plant-based remedies don’t stop there. If you find yourself cooking with garlic regularly, you’re certainly in luck. You already have what you need to push back the bugs that would like to call your house their own. Garlic is a great repellent for many insects that seek to feast upon the bounty of your garden. This includes aphids, caterpillars, weevils, tomato worms, and snails. If you have a particularly heinous ant problem, try adding some garlic to your spearmint sachets. This will help add that extra scent to drive them back. Even mosquitoes can be repelled with a great amount of garlic. If you’re not too apprehensive about repelling your friends and family as well, a garlic spray is a natural way to tell the swarms of mosquitos that your blood is completely off limits.
Wormwood is also a great option for driving back the rebel horde of insects that want to either ruin your garden or your peace of mind. While there are many varieties of Wormwood, there’s only one you’re going to want to solve your insect frustrations: Artemisia absinthium, or grand wormwood. If you recognize your latin, then the answer to the question bubbling around in your head right now is “yes!”. This is the same wormwood that the alcoholic spirit absinthe is derived from. It is also the same, bitter plant that literature buffs will recognize from an easily-missed quote from the Nurse in Romeo and Juliet. Wormwood is ultimately a bitter plant. Once used to help wean children from nursing, this plant can provide excellent resistance for a large number of insects. Crafting a tea out of the leaves, or using the oils mixed with water makes for an excellent repellent. Spraying the wormwood around areas of infestation can help drive back flies and fleas from inside your home, and can repel slugs away from your garden’s plants.
You’ll find that basil is also an effective bug repellent for several of your indoor, flying pests. Several types of flies seem to strongly dislike the scent and the taste. Common house flies, white flies and fruit flies all dislike the plant. Utilizing a basil-based spray can help prevent them from taking up residence in your home. This could well be a divine intervention for those who with a flair for making homemade jams and jellies. As your kitchen starts filling with fruits of all kinds, the flies begin to swarm. A good basil mixture, sprayed around or hung in sachets, should help put the brakes on your yearly fly problems.
Many other insects also have their all-natural repellents. Caterpillars, for example, find garlic to be abhorrent. So too do aphids, mosquitoes, snails and weevils. Most insects that either bug your home or invade your garden have a natural, plant-based remedy to drive them away. And in most cases, you already have the ingredients already in your home, or easily purchased from your nearest grocery store. Why resort to often foul smelling chemicals? Nature has just what you need to keep your home and garden virtually insect-free.