Summer is almost here, and you’ll want to spend more time in your backyards and gardens.
Unfortunately, so will the bugs. And because of viruses such as Zika and West Nile, mosquitoes are a big concern.
You can plant herbs and flowers that repel those bugs, including mosquitoes, and add a touch of beauty to your backyard.
One sure sign of summer is bugs.
Some critters eat at your fruits and vegetables while others, such as flies and mosquitoes, eat at your patience. Some plants have strong scents that bugs don’t like, making them good insect repellents.
At the same time, they make attractive additions to home landscapes. Here are nine favorite plants that bug the bugs:
1. Marigolds: These flowers are colorful additions to landscaping, but they have a distinctive smell that repels mosquitoes and other garden pests, including squash bugs and tomato worms. Marigolds contain a natural compound used in many insect repellents.
Plant some marigolds in the garden among your squash, melons and tomatoes or near open windows and doorways where mosquitoes might be tempted to enter.
2. Lavender: About the only insects you see around lavender are bees. They love the flowers, but other bugs stay away.
Lavender has a pleasant scent that comes from the essential oils in the leaves of the plant, but the bugs hate it. Hang some dried lavender in your closet and you won’t have to worry about moths eating your clothes.
The herb is a perennial and is drought resistant once it’s established, a bonus for areas that are watching their water consumption.
3. Lemon grass: Lemon grass can grow up to 4 feet tall, but the best thing about this decorative grass is that it contains citronella, a common natural ingredient in many mosquito repellents.
You’ve probably heard of citronella candles and torches. The…