The number of mosquitoes in the UK is increasing, as is the number that may cause you harm.
Mosquitoes are a nuisance but some people have a strong allergic reaction to a mosquito bite. In order to minimise the presence of mosquitoes in your garden think about what you are planting. There actually are quite a few plants that you can grow which will repel mosquitoes. Here are just a few:
Plain, ordinary CATNIP is perhaps the most popular. You can usually grow this perennial fairly easily from seed and it works wonders. These plants are a repellent which you can also use on your skin. Crush the leaves of the plant and rub the mixture onto your body for a cheap and natural mosquito repellent.
Similarly ROSEMARY has these properties. Both these plants are useful in other ways too.
Many people have geraniums growing in their gardens. Geraniums are easy to grow and offer beautiful flowers in the summer. However, there is a type of geranium called a MOSQUITO plant, which has good repellent properties as well as its beauty. This geranium acts like CITRONELLA but will grow in a more diversified climate.
With MARIGOLDS you can add beauty to your garden and an aroma which will deter aphids as well as mosquitoes. This will have the added benefit of helping your roses to flourish.
Marigolds with their brightly coloured yellow to orange flowers are easily grown from seed or seedlings each year and will last throughout the whole summer.
Another pretty flower that repels mosquitoes is the blue and white annual, AGERATUM. Apparently mosquitoes hate this plant's smell.
One that I have personally encountered whilst researching this subject is THYMUS CITRIODORA. This hardy perennial, which is a member of the THYME family, has such a high citronella content that its repellent properties are renowned throughout the world.
GARLIC is a handy and safe mosquito repellent, so it possibly works well in your garden also, but this is just supposition. It is however possible to design your garden so that certain pests are deterred.
Growing PEPPERMINT can deter spiders. You may say spiders are a gardeners’ friend but that depends on the type and their number.
COMPANION planting is easy to do and useful for this. In other words plant something alongside of your fruit and vegetables which will deter bugs and mosquitoes from devouring them. A good example is lavender. If this is planted near to roses the lavender should deter aphids from eating the roses.
A visit to Turkey some years ago portrayed perfectly the use of Eucalyptus as a mosquito repellent. There were areas of the countryside with rows of EUCALYPTUS trees. One area in particular had been swamp land and was a hotbed for malaria carrying mosquitoes until the trees were planted.
As this plant or tree needs a lot of water to grow well, the ones they had planted had not only got rid of the mosquitoes but made the land more viable.
Ask at your local garden centre for advice on which EUCALYPTUS variety will suit your garden. It will smell divine and hopefully control the level of mosquitoes but remember, it may sap your garden's moisture.
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