Mosquitoes are undoubtedly one of the most annoying aspects of summer. When we are outside, there is not much we can do to avoid the problem of mosquitoes, if we do not have a good product for the skin that keeps them away, but when we are at home, even in the absence of mosquito nets, the solution is there, even when we live in the open spaces of the house, such as the garden or the terrace. So here are a number of effective methods to keep mosquitoes away from the garden, and the house in general, during the summer, including yard mosquito sprays.
In summer mosquitoes are an annoying problem, especially in open air areas, or in the open countryside, where disinfestation is not always done properly. Inside parks and green areas, there is really little to do, if not to buy a good repellent product to apply on the skin and to keep always with us, especially in the evening, when the mosquitoes are much more numerous than the hours of the day.
And for the home? What can we do to keep mosquitoes away? The situation becomes particularly annoying on the balcony, or on the terrace, when we organize a nice outdoor dinner, but unfortunately the light from the lighting attracts mosquitoes and other types of insects. The situation is much worse for those who have a garden; in green spaces, it is known, more mosquitoes proliferate, also attracted by the water used for watering flowers and plants, as well as artificial lighting, which unfortunately cannot be avoided in the garden.
Many people resort to chemical repellents, therefore, not only candles based on lemongrass or zampironi, but also chemical sprays repellent against the insects. This solution, it is important to stress, is not the best for a number of reasons, ranging from attention to the environment to our well-being and the space we live in.
First of all because any product with spray can dispenser is harmful and polluting to the environment. Then, it is important to remember that if you spray a product in the open air, precisely because you are not in a closed environment, the dispersion is maximum, and in any case even having to inhale the product is certainly not a panacea for our body. Moreover, it would not hurt our animal friends to inhale any kind of chemical product either.
When you say it like that, the problem of mosquitoes seems to have no solution. And yet, there is a slightly more natural solution. All you need to do is get to know it and put it to good use to get the mosquitoes out of the garden and get around a problem that becomes really annoying in summer. So let’s see what are these remedies and these little tricks that can become really useful in this little big home battle.
PLANTS TO FIGHT MOSQUITOES
The first valid allies against mosquitoes are the plants. Or rather, some plants. There are some, in fact, that for their repellent properties are able to keep away mosquitoes in a natural way, without forcing us to resort to artificial remedies, such as the pips or lemongrass candles. Furthermore, some odours that are so pleasant to smell are precisely those that mosquitoes do not particularly like and this is why mosquitoes stay well away from plants that give off these odours. So here are these plants.
Calendula Officinalis is a plant that produces leaves and flowers that contain a substance called pyrethrum, which is considered a real natural insecticide. This plant also has a good aesthetic appearance and can be a good opportunity to … combine the useful with the delightful and decorate your home, terrace and garden with taste.
Otherwise known as Cymbopogon Nardus and has always been considered a plant capable of keeping away mosquitoes, so much so that its principles are used to prepare the summer candles that we mentioned above. This plant is effective against insects in general, not only against mosquitoes, and for this reason it is particularly appreciated in summer.
Its Latin name is Helichrysum Italicum and it is a plant that is very well found in warm environments. It is easy to recognize because of its almost silvery leaves and, perhaps not everyone knows it, by lightly rubbing the vegetal parts of the plant its leaves give off a rather strong aroma that mosquitoes don’t particularly like.
It is a Mediterranean plant, rich in flowers during the summer. Even in its leaves are enclosed natural repellent substances that are able to keep away mosquitoes on summer nights. Its nectar, however, small curiosity, attracts butterflies in the garden.
Smelly Pelargonium (Geranium)
Otherwise known with the name of Pelargonium Graveolens, this plant, contrary to what we might think, exudes a very pleasant smell for us evidently not much appreciated by the mosquitoes, which, in fact, keep well at a distance in the areas where this plant is present.
These are only the species of plants which, thanks to its medicinal properties, are able to keep the mosquitoes away from the garden, but it is good to make some clarifications. A single plant will not be enough to keep mosquitoes away throughout your garden area; if you want to use this method as a natural repellent you will need to plant a substantial group of them, possibly in a row so that the plants can create a real natural barrier.
WHAT TO DO IN THE GARDEN TO KEEP MOSQUITOES AWAY FROM THE GARDEN
Besides the plants which have repellent properties, there are also other little tricks we can put into practice to keep the mosquitoes away from the garden. The first aspect to consider is the presence of water; mosquitoes develop right inside the water and inside the water they lay their eggs, and it is precisely water which is necessary for their birth and survival. Therefore it will also be necessary to adopt these tricks:
Avoid letting the water stagnate in the garden, in buckets, containers, watering cans and, above all, under racking.
Remove excess water that stagnates in the saucer every time you water plants and flowers.
If you have manholes, cover their openings with a rather narrow mesh net.
If you use bins or buckets to collect rainwater, close them.
Try to get the lawn, garden and orchard less wet. This does not mean leaving the green to itself. You can decrease the frequency of watering, but increase the intensity of the water you provide to plants and flowers when you water your garden. In this way, the garden will be less humid and the number of mosquitoes, which love the humidity of the grass, will decrease.
Mow the lawn and grass regularly and don’t let the grass become too tall; when the grass is wet it becomes the perfect habitat for mosquitoes to lay their eggs.
OTHER MEASURES TO KEEP MOSQUITOES AWAY FROM THE GARDEN
There are also other ways to keep mosquitoes away, which are based on our biological knowledge. We know, for example, that some species of fish and animals feed on insects such as mosquitoes. Therefore, if you have a small artificial pond in your garden, or a gushing fountain in the middle of the greenery, to combat mosquitoes, you might consider putting shrimps, frogs or Gambusia fish, mosquito predators par excellence, into the water.
Another good ally against mosquitoes, and perhaps the least known, is copper. Copper is a material capable of releasing cupric ions that also have the function of natural repellent against mosquitoes. You could place small copper wires or plates in the saucers of your plants. Only one thing: the copper must be clean to emit copper ions!
DIY ANTI-MOSQUITO SPRAY
At this point, there’s only one thing left to do: get a good mosquito repellent. Yes, because it is important to stress that it is always good to be well prepared, in the case, for example, of a particularly generous evening with mosquitoes, perhaps after a summer storm. Having a good mosquito repellent on hand is the best solution.
There are really many types and prices on the market, but if you prefer a home and natural remedy, here is a good recipe to be made with vegetable oils to be combined according to your tastes:
- Distilled water (but also water brought to boil will do);
- Vegetable glycerine;
- One or more essential oils;
- A vial with spray;
- Witch Hazel Water.
To prepare the mixture, fill your vial halfway with distilled water and then add the witch hazel water, leaving a finger to separate the liquid from the rim. At this point you can add half a teaspoon of vegetable glycerine and about 50 drops of essential oil. Here is your anti-mosquito spray ready to spray on the skin when you are in the garden or in critical places in the presence of potential mosquitoes.