Plants That Repel Insects And Pests You Can Grow

Featured | A macro closeup of Lavandula stoechas | Plants That Repel Insects And Pests You Can Grow

Grow these plants that repel insects and control — if not totally get rid of — pesky pests in your garden and home, the natural way!

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Plants That Repel Insects Every Prepper Need to Know

1. Mint

Mint is a useful and inexpensive herb and is one of the plants that repel flies. You can use mint in both forms – in fresh or dried form – to deter flies.

Mint is a useful and inexpensive herb and is one of the plants that repel flies. You can use mint in both forms – in fresh or dried form – to deter flies.

Apart from flies, mint is also helpful against mosquitoes, ants, and mice. You can keep crushed mint leaves in a shallow bowl, to keep flies away.

If you want, you can also fill a few muslin tea bags with dried crushed mint leaves and keep them in the infested areas.

Tip: Because mint grows so quickly, keep your mint plant in its own pot to prevent it from taking over your garden.

2. Bay Leaves

Bay leaves produce a subtle scent flies hate. Other insects like moths, roaches, earwigs, and mice also hate the fragrance of bay leaves.


You can grow bay leaf plants in pots to place in the infested areas to keep roaches, flies, and mice away. Dried bay leaves are equally effective in repelling flies.

3. Lemongrass

To help deter mosquitoes with its strong fragrance, plant lemongrass along walkways and in locations close to seating areas.


You can plant lemongrass in large planters you can move around as they also provide hedging for privacy and smells wonderful.

4. Basil

In fly-infested areas, you could use potted plants of basil to deter flies. You can use them near external doorways and/or seating areas.


If for some reason, you are unable to use fresh basil, you can also use dried basil. You can keep dry basil leaves in a muslin tea bag, near the infested area.

One important thing about the basil plant – you should always water at the root and not on the leaves, as this will produce a stronger fragrance.

5. Geraniums

They not only add a boost of color but geraniums also keep out Japanese beetles.


These would look beautiful in the front walkway. Curb appeal and bug deflector… can't beat that!

RELATED: 9 Ways To Repel Rats For A Rodent-Free Home

6. Catnip

Pest and insects will hate this entry but cats will love it for sure. This perennial herb also has quite a reputable history as a medicinal herb.


What Is a Perennial? A perennial is a plant which grows for more than a season or continuously for some period of years. These plants may look dead in the winter but they will regrow come spring.

One trait that this plant is less known for is its mosquito repelling ability. The natural oil within the leaves has been proven to be ten times more effective than DEET at repelling mosquitoes.

What Is DEET? Diethyltoluamide or DEET is the most commonly used ingredient in insect repellents. This chemical is feared to have bad effects on the health and environment.

7. Pyrethrum Chrysanthemums (Specifically, the Ones That Look Like Daisies)

The blooms of these lovely chrysanthemums contain pyrethrum, which is frequently used in natural insect repellents and dog shampoo.

The chemical can kill and repel ants, ticks, fleas, spider mites, roaches, Japanese beetles, lice, and even bed bugs.


This characteristic makes it a popular insect-repelling companion plant in vegetable gardens. Pots brimming with these yellow and white blooms are also a welcome addition to any outdoor seating areas.

8. Citronella Mosquito Plant

The citronella mosquito plant is a genetically-engineered geranium hybrid with a unique characteristic – it repels mosquitoes!

You can grow them as a potted patio plant, and it is popular for its attractive foliage and sweet lemony scent, as well as for its mosquito repelling powers.


Citronella is the substance in citronella candles used to deter mosquitoes. This plant is most effective as a repellent if you crush a few leaves and rub them on your skin.

Watch this video from Natural Ways about 4 natural homemade organic pesticide recipes using plant ingredients:

Now you know these plants that repel insects may grow in your garden. So before you hit the store for chemical pesticides or spend big bucks on pest control, try the environment-friendly approach, first.

Not only are they beneficial plants for vegetable gardening, but any of the plants could be an ingredient for whipping up natural homemade insect and pest repellents.

Which of these plants that repel insects do you have in your garden now? Tell us all about your gardening venture in the comments section below!

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Editor’s Note: This post was originally published on March 17, 2016, and has been updated for quality and relevancy.

5 Responses to :
Plants That Repel Insects And Pests You Can Grow

  1. Thanks for the above tips, Stacy…and don’t forget Marigolds as they are rather toxic to soft bodied insects-though I’m sure you knew that. Of course, they are vulnerable to being gobbled by common brown snails, but not slugs. A pan of beer will take out the slugs. I used cannibal snails to completely eradicate the brown snails in less than 10 years (I mean a lifetime of snails totally eradicated). But shredded print/ie. newspaper/s will also take out or gather snails for a final salting. Almost everything in So. California was brought her by idiot immigrants (note: we are all of immigrants!). So some of the best resources to eliminate things come from folks on the outside.

    Now then, does anyone have any ideas for eliminating rats and squirrels and ants (the ants bring aphids with them-on their backs-to add to the work of sustaining certain crops, like corn!).

    1. Kathy Frederick says:

      I got condiment cups (kind with the tops you put the ketchup in at McDonalds and the like) and poked holes in the sides with a hole puncher. I glue gunned a wooden skewer to the bottom of each one so I could stick them into the ground. I placed moth balls and cayenne pepper in each one and put them at various places in my raised beds. I also doused peppermint essential oil on cotton balls and put those throughout. In addition, I placed pots of peppermint plant at various places (didn’t plant those because roots are invasive and will take over the garden) and I sprinkled cinnamon on the boards of my stockade fence. I have not seen any more evidence of squirrels. I also made homemade pepper spray and spray that on the blossoms about twice a week. The squirrels will only have one meal once their tongues are burning. They’ll find another garden. Hope this helps.

  2. Anne Stump says:

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