10 Mosquito Repelling Plants for Your Garden

Summer is my favorite season but the one thing I don’t like about it is – mosquitoes! Rather than use chemicals or sprays to keep them away, I prefer a more natural method, like this list of 10 mosquito repelling plants!

Basil. Did you know that basil essential oil is deadly to mosquito larvae? The smell of basil is so strong that you don’t need to crush its leaves to repel bugs. Plant in a sunny location and keep the soil moist.

Basil in the garden - mosquito repelling plants


Catnip. Your kitties love it and mosquitoes hate it. Catnip contains nepetalactone that attracts cats and repels insects. A win-win all the way around! Not to mention, an Iowa State University showed that catnip is 10 times more effective than DEET! I already have this in my garden but plan to add more.

Catnip in the Garden


Garlic. Plain and simple, mosquitoes hate the smell! I like to plant garlic in my vegetable to keep the mosquitoes away while I’m pulling weeds or harvesting veggies.

Growing Garlic in Your Garden


Lavender. Did you know mosquitoes hate the scent of this fragrant herb? You can crush the leaves and rub the scent on your skin to keep mosquitoes away – and you’ll smell a whole lot nicer, too. Plant lavender in a sunny location.

Lavender adds color in the garden and is also an excellent mosquito repelling plant


Lemon Balm. This pretty perennial carries the strong scent of lemon which keeps mosquitoes at bay. But be forewarned – lemon balm tends to be invasive.

Lemon Balm in the Garden to Repel Mosquitoes


Marigolds. Perhaps the prettiest way to repel mosquitoes is to plan sunny marigolds. They contain pyrethrum which is an ingredient found in insect repellants. Set them in pots around your deck or patio, and plant them in the garden to keep bugs away from your vegetables.

Marigolds for the Garden


Peppermint. The oil from this plant is effective in repelling mosquitoes and you’ll enjoy its sweet fragrance.

Peppermint - grow as an herb and to repel mosquitoes


Rosemary. Even the New York Botanical Garden recommends rosemary as one of the prized a mosquito repelling plants. Mosquitoes abhor its woody scent. Plant in pots around your outdoor living area and bring them inside for the winter.

Rosemary - cooking herb and mosquito repelling plants


Sage. Did you know that burning sage is a great way to keep the mosquitoes away? Throw some into your next bonfire when you’re roasting marshmallows.

Sage - a popular mosquito repelling plant


Scented Geraniums. Who knew a plant so beautiful could keep your summer nemesis away? Choose one with a lemon scent as those seem to be the most hated by mosquitoes.

Scented Geraniums


When it comes time to plant herbs and flowers in your landscape, consider a few of the mosquito repelling plants from this list!

List of Mosquito Repelling Plants


More Gardening Articles to Enjoy:

5 Tips for Successful Flower Gardening

Planting Tips for Your Garden

Garden Tour in Upstate New York

Elements of a Cottage Garden

Oak Brook Garden Tour

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  1. I do plant most of these every year, especially the herbs. I’ve read that a pot of basil on each side of an exterior door will repel mosquitoes enough that they aren’t hanging on the screen or darting inside when the door opens. I’m going to try that this year since my sliding door opens several times a day to let the dogs out. I’ve also planted several patches of catnip, but my outdoor kitties lay and roll in it – using it for a bed on warm summer nights – and it doesn’t take the abuse very well. They also love to smash down and use the big leaves of my hostas as beds also, even though I have perfectly good shelters for them. I would love to plant lavender as a repellent, and have tried more than once, but I never seem to have a spot that is sunny enough for its liking. Thank you for the informative post – I need to get busy gathering my plants – finally.

    1. Thanks Jennifer! This is super helpful and I’ve been planning to start growing herbs on my deck, so it’s a culinary win too.

      Happy Spring!
      New Hampshire

  2. Learned something today, i have some of these in pots, now i need to move them closer to my porches. Thanks Jennifer.