Pest-Repellent Plants for Your Lafayette Landscape

wild mint

Here in Lafayette, we’re blessed by a warm and damp climate that’s perfect for growing a garden or lush flower bed. Unfortunately, the same environment welcomes hordes of insects. Consider growing these pest-repellent plants for your Lafayette landscape that will not only add value and beauty to your landscape but also keep the bugs at bay.

1. Basil

basilThis tasty herb helps keep both mosquitoes and houseflies away. You can grow basil in beds or containers, indoors and out. This herb is an excellent addition to soups, salads, and meats like pork or chicken.

2. Mint

You may love the smell of mint, but mosquitoes loathe this plant. Some gardeners also report success when planting mint near vegetables like cabbage, turnips, and broccoli to repel pests there, too. Mint has strong aromatic properties that keep insects away.

A word of caution – mint is an aggressive grower, so once you’establish it in an area, you may find it grows prolifically and takes over your other plants. You may be better off planting it in a container instead of your garden.

3. Alliums

alliumThere are several flowers in the Allium family, including the breathtaking Allium giganteum. This plant produces flowers with stalks up to six feet tall and works as a natural insecticide. These flowers repel common garden insects, such as slugs, carrot flies, cabbage worms, and aphids. Plant alliums near your carrots, broccoli, potatoes, tomatoes, and kohlrabi for best results.

4. Marigolds

Marigolds are one of agriculture’s best-kept secrets, repelling dozens of pests including insects and moles. They can be planted in your flower beds or interspersed throughout the vegetable garden to get rid of mosquitoes, aphids, and even rabbits.

5. Lavender

lavenderLavender is prized as an excellent relaxation aid, but it also causes bugs to take their business elsewhere. This herb adds a sweet fragrance to your garden or home – a scent that bugs abhor. As with basil, you can plant lavender in a container either inside or out, or place it directly into the flowerbed.

6. Lemongrass

If you’ve ever seen or used a citronella candle, you’re already familiar with lemongrass. If you’ve ever used a citronella candle, you’re already familiar with lemongrass. Lemongrass is the umbrella name for plants in the Cymbopogon family (which includes citronella grass.) This natural mosquito repellent grows to a whopping four feet tall and three feet wide in a single season. The plant contains an oil that’s often used in Asian dishes. It does best in a sunny location.

7. Petunias

petuniasPetunias are a favorite flower for gardeners because they’re easy to care for and come in a variety of colors. They also play double-duty, repelling a variety of pests, like tomato hornworms, asparagus beetles, and squash bugs. These plants do well in garden beds, hanging baskets, or containers, but are most useful when planted close to your vegetable garden.

All of these plants contain essential oils that act as nature’s bug repellent. Insects have a tendency to avoid them, and while you can extract the oils to make your own DIY bug repellent, it’s much more effective to plant them around your home.

Need help choosing the right plant for your lawn? Visit our Lafayette lawn care page for more information!


Rachel Vogel