It might sound strange, the idea of using houseplants to keep bugs away, bugs are all over plants and feed on plants in many cases. It is a fact that plants can be homes for bugs and the feeding ground for many more. However, there are some houseplants that can be used to keep bugs from calling your home their home.
If you want to start to grow a few plants in the house this winter try putting into soil these houseplants to keep bugs away.
- Catnip: Catnip is known to repel ants, beetles, cockroaches, and aphids. That is a nice list of pests to get keep out of your home. Beyond the pest control aspect, catnip is a really pretty flowering plant and is used in many essential oils. Catnip can be tough to grow indoors, it needs good lighting and water, but even more than troublesome can be the affection that cats have for catnip.
- Citronella: Beyond the candle you can buy at the convenience store, citronella is a plant you can grow to keep out general insects. Unlike catnip, citronella is not liked by cats and might produce a battle of wills between the household feline and budding plant. Citronella needs full sun and warm temperatures to thrive. A citronella plant would need a large pot to grow into is another good set up.
- Dill: Many of your garden herbs have great side effects to keeping away various bugs. They many times smell really great as well. Herbs also do not need large potting set ups to grow. Dill will repel aphids and spider mites as well as some less common bugs. Dill grows inside easily with sun and water and can even provide some nice add-ons to evening dinner.
- Venus Flytrap: Unlike dill you probably do not want to try and eat this plant, but it sure does like to eat flies. If you can get over the fact that a plant eats an insect (yes, that can seem kind of creepy to people), then a venus flytrap can be bought or grown in your home. A flytrap can grow pretty easily indoors. The plant, however, does need a different type of planting soil than the standard bag of garden soil. Even more fun, if you have kids in the house it provides another little conversation piece in the house.
- Pitcher Plants: If a venus flytrap seems to passe’ for you then a possible jump into growing some pitcher plants could be more your style. Pitcher plants are exotic and beautiful and they eat bugs just like a flytrap. Trouble with the pitcher plant is that there are so many species of them getting the growing technique right could be a bit of a task. We would classify this as an option for the advanced gardener. If you are able to grow some pitcher plants around the home you will have some really great conversation pieces for guests as well as a fly free home.
- Spearmint: Spearmint (mint) is easy to grow indoors and smells great. Spearmint is also nice to add onto various foods (we like the ice cream version the most). Spearmint is also a great bug repellant for fleas, moths, ants, aphids, and even some rodents. If you have adequate sun in windows around the house you can have a nice air freshener and bug repellant in each room of the house. How cool is that!
- Basil: Another herb that is helpful in bug control in the house is basil. Basil is known to repel flies and mosquitoes. It is also a good add on to marinara sauces. Herbs are typically happy plants indoors and grow quite well with normal care.
So if you new year resolution is to start a garden or grow some of your food consider taking on some houseplants to keep bugs away from your home.
If your efforts at bug control via plants is not working and you’d like a professional option feel free to give us a call. We are happy to come out for a free inspection or to provide some pest treatments as needed.