They're here! With the early spring weather, a bumper crop of blood-thirsty black flies and mosquitoes have appeared, too! All insects have a purpose but some are awfully annoying to humans! Here's how to deter mosquitoes and other bugs while you enjoy the great outdoors.
We all know about store-brand products, so we're going to tell you how to fend off those pesky insects with safe, non-toxic repellents.
- Burn a little sage or rosemary over coals to repel mosquitoes.
- Rubbing the skin with baby oil or imitation vanilla extract repels biting insects such as mosquitoes and blackflies.
- Some people swear garlic works and swallow slivered garlic to ward off these summer pests. Others take garlic tablets or rub garlic juice directly on their skin.
- Some people have luck with high doses of vitamin B1 (100 milligrams, two or three times a day), but it doesn't work for everybody.
- Rub cider vinegar on your skin to repel insects. If you take in enough cider vinegar by putting it on foods you eat, you'll develop a body odor that will repel insects, including black flies.
In the Garden
- It is thought that certain plants repel a broad spectrum of insects. Marigolds, chrysanthemums, asters, and pyrethrum daisies, as well as herbs such as basil, anise, and coriander, are all thought to repel insects.
- To keep mosquitoes to a minimum, eliminate their breeding sites on your property. They need standing water to lay their eggs in, so empty those puddles, old cans, buckets, and plant pots.
- Add a few drops of citronella to each gallon of exterior paint to keep away flying insects such as blackflies and mosquitoes. The citronella won't affect the paint, but it will keep the bugs from messing up your fresh paint job.
- And your home, add a bat house! Did you know that one small brown bat can eat as many as 600 mosquitoes in one hour?
DEET-Free Bug Repellents
If you're looking for a non-toxic insect repellent we'd recommend this product: BUG OUT. The water-based BUG OUT Spray in a recyclable plastic pump bottle is totally chemical-free yet creates a powerful bug barrier on your clothing and exposed skin. Definitely an outdoor essential to prevent being eaten alive!
The same plant-based repellents that work in the garden work on your skin. BUG OUT is formulated with lemongrass, rosemary, peppermint, thyme, cedarwood, geranium, and wintergreen (to name a few). These scents pleasing to humans—and noxious to insects.
You can't bite back, but you can relax on the patio, camp in the woods, and enjoy nature without being bothered by swarms of biting bugs!
Oh—If you do get bitten or stung, a paste of mashed garlic can help take the sting and itch away. Some people apply garlic, onion, or radish juice for the same purpose. See a list of remedies for insect bites and stings.
We hope this is helpful and biting bugs beware!