Mosquito Repelling Plants

7:36 AM, Jul 10, 2012   |    comments
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Triad --  Mosquitoes are drawn to water.  With so much rain in this week's forecast, we are likely to have standing water in some places.  That's where mosquitoes breed.  So watch out!  They could be coming after you! 

First of all, do you know why the little blood suckers come after people?  Yes, it's because they want our blood.  According to Web MD, it's also because they're drawn to the carbon dioxide we exhale.  Plus, they're attracted to heat and movement.    You're actually more of a target if you're running around, getting hot and sweaty than if you're sitting around shooting the breeze.

Here's a way to try to keep them away naturally.  Cissie Apple from A&A Plants recommends the Scented Geranium, Eucalyptus, Lemon Balm, Lavender, Rosemary, and Lemon Thyme.  The magic is in the scent.  Chances are, if we like the scent, they don't.  Marigolds have long been used to prevent mosquitoes.  Of course, their scent may be just as offensive to the gardener as the bug!

According to eartheasy.com, Catnip has been shown to be about ten times as effective as Deet.  The problem there is that you may repel mosquitoes while making yourself very attractive to cats!

Here's the trick.  These plants work best when their oils are released.  Plant them close to where you will be entertaining.  If they are close enough where people are likely to brush against them, that's even better.  According to Donald Lewis from Iowa State University, perhaps the most effective method is to rub the leaves on your skin.   

Cissie Apple, A&A Plants

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