How to Repel Mosquitoes Naturally in Canada
Keeping clear of mosquitoes can turn into a full-time effort. Carrying such a risk to your own family's health, including the family pets, these pesky little vampires can leave a lot more behind than just an annoying itch. Especially with mosquito-borne diseases such as West Nile Virus now reaching Canada and Zika Virus, Dengue and Chikungunya threatening to come to Canada soon. We have compiled a guide for you with all the natural steps you can take to minimize their presence and repel these pesky pests! These are a few things you can do around your home to minimize mosquito bites and keep these disease-carrying pests at bay, without having to resort to pesticides, bug sprays and insect repellents which contain potentially harmful chemicals, such as deet.
Minimizing Mosquito Prone Area
First, make sure you don't have any standing water around your property. This is where mosquitoes lay their eggs, and even something as small as a kiddie pool can be enough to support a whole generation of bloodsuckers. If you have any birdbaths, potted plants, or watering cans, empty them out regularly. It's recommended that if you have a rain barrel, which obviously can't be drained, make sure to cover it with mosquito netting or a fitted screen to ensure that the barrel can still catch water without becoming a breeding ground for those pesky bloodsuckers.
Next, take a look at your landscaping. Assessing any potential mosquito havens that your yard may have yearly is a good habit, and will allow you to identify any new hiding spots or breeding grounds. One thing we know for sure is mosquitoes love dense vegetation. If you have any areas of your yard that are heavily wooded or overgrown or have bushes and shrubs that are unkept, consider trimming them back to remove cozy places for mosquitoes.
Another easy way to make your yard less mosquito friendly is by ensuring that the lawn is kept short and never gets to an overgrown state. During the day when it gets to its hottest temperatures, mosquitoes will seek shade and coverage from the sun by hiding in tall grass. If your lawn is kept short, this provides fewer hiding spots for these pests. Keep grass under 3” in length to avoid hospitable habitats.
Remove any piles of leaves, refuse, or garbage – these are ideal breeding grounds for mosquitoes. If you have any yard debris (leaves, twigs) from the previous season that still resides on your lawn, make sure to remove it and dispose of it properly in your organics bin.
Best Natural Mosquito Repellents
There are many natural substances that can be used as mosquito repellents. Home remedies have mixed results as far as efficiency goes but if you are looking for natural home remedies these are definitely worth a try.
Citronella candles and oils are a popular way to repel mosquitoes. Citronella candles/oils are moderately effective at repelling mosquitoes away but only in the immediate area around them. This solution will do little to keep mosquitoes out of your yard or to stop them from multiplying. Citronella works by masking the smell of carbon dioxide and lactic acid that humans produce, which happen to be the scents that mosquitoes are searching for.
Using fans outdoors is another way to naturally repel mosquitoes from you. The fan will need to be on a high setting and pointed directly at you for it to work. The moving air will make it difficult for mosquitoes to land on you as they are not good flyers and are easily blown off course.
Other popular mosquito repellent home remedies include vinegar, lemon juice, eucalyptus oil, clove oil, basil, garlic, and thyme but their efficiency is questionable. Some people have found success using these items while others find them ineffective. Again, these would only be somewhat effective for repelling mosquitoes around the area they are placed, not for protecting the whole yard or for controlling a growing mosquito population.
You could also opt for a commercial insect repellent that uses natural ingredients like essential oils such as lemon, eucalyptus lemongrass, or citronella oil as the active ingredient. These products have been proven to be effective at repelling mosquitoes when used correctly, but often the selection available for consumers is underwhelming or not as strong as the ones pest businesses use.
Gardening Mosquitoes Away
Do you have a bit of a green thumb? Already have a beautiful garden space next to the patio? The good news for you is that there are many natural plants that either repel mosquitoes or make it so that they are not able to pick up your scent.
A popular plant and one whose scent is widely loved is lavender. Lavender not only looks beautiful in any garden but also repels mosquitoes. A 2002 animal study done on hairless mice found that lavender oil was effective at repelling adult mosquitoes.
Citronella grass is also an effective plant in repelling mosquitoes, and though candles with the essential oils from citronella are typically used, the best news is that the living plant is the most effective at repelling pests!
If you were thinking about starting an herb garden this year you are in luck! There are a few herbs that double as a natural pest repellent for your garden. Basil, rosemary and mint are all wonderful selections for your herb garden that are both delicious and a natural repellent.
Did you know that just like their fictional counterpart, mosquitoes are repelled by garlic as well! Before you go out and buy a bunch of garlic from the store note that a normal bulb of garlic will do little to repel mosquitoes.
Fortunately for homeowners, our own BuzzShield™ provides natural protection for your yard, keeping those annoying mosquitoes away throughout the entire season. Our Canadian BuzzShield™ formula is available as an all-natural, garlic juice-based barrier. This super garlic juice isn't your typical over-the-counter garlic from the store – it’s a special concentrated blend specifically designed to repel Canada’s mosquitoes.
Once the delicious smell of garlic wears off to human senses, which generally takes about an hour, the mosquitoes are left with an odour that disgusts and repels them. With a sense of smell about 10,000 times more effective than humans, even the mosquitoes breeding over in the neighbour's yard will be sure to stay away from the potent-to-them odour.
Although the barrier works great, it is something that needs to be reapplied at regular intervals. The BuzzShield™ Insect control system is a program that will keep your yard in Canada mosquito-free all year round so you and your family can focus on enjoying your outdoor space this season.