An Eco-Friendly Way to Pest Control.

Create-a-garden-on-the-balcony
Image credits: Balcony Garden Web.

More often than not, you will find yourself drawn to a tiny red dot on your skin. Regardless of where it is, whether it is on your leg or arm, that tiny red dot looks kind of angry. That’s because you’ve done nothing much but scratch and poke at it. But it’s itchy, you argue. It’s there and you’re trying to make the itch go away by poking it. Or so said your grandmother the last time she was here.

Oh no, have you been bitten by a mosquito?

No, no, don’t fret. It’s probably not an Aedes mosquito (or at least you’re hoping it wasn’t because the last place you were standing in was your back garden). Well, the thought of applying tiger balm or mosquito repellent doesn’t always come to mind because, hey, you’re only in your back garden, not a goddamned forest!

Here’s the deal. There is a natural way of controlling these pests and no, you don’t have to run down to the nearest supermarket and buy a box of pesticide or Shieldtox. All you need is a pot with a good draining system, some potting mix, and a plant. Oh, and don’t forget the water. Minimal amount of sunlight is necessary. Yeah, that’s about it. Simple as that.

There are 4 types of plants you can choose from, and all of them can thrive and survive in our tropical Malaysian weather.

PEPPERMINT PLANTS

menthol
Image credits: Secretly Healthy.

These plants aren’t just good for your breath, but they are pretty good against preventing mosquitoes from trying to befriend you.

Peppermint has long been used as a treatment for colds and flu because of its natural fungicidal and bacterial retardant properties, as well as its essential oils that are high in thymol. The peppermint plant is very easy to maintain and can even be planted under your larger plants as a beautiful ground cover for the soil.

Ingredients:

  • Well drained soil
  • Partial to full sunlight for at least 3-4 hours
  • 30-50ml water for a 6-inch pot (note: avoid water logging)

ROSEMARY PLANTS

rosemary-3
Image credits: Foodofy.com.

With this plant, you will never have to buy another packet of herbs again. Because you have it in a pot on your balcony!

The rosemary plant is a native of the Mediterranean, so it is only natural for it to thrive in well-drained soil in hot, dry weather. Apart from being used as seasoning, it is also a natural mosquito repellent, and has been used for centuries to keep pesky mosquitoes away! How’s that for multitasking? Not to mention, it is also an inexpensive and attractive way to boost the appearance of your balcony.

Ingredients:

  • Well drained soil, with additional coco peat or small loose stones to make the soil more permeable
  • Partial to full sunlight for at least 2-3 hours
  • 30-50ml water for a 6-inch pot (note: avoid water logging)

MARIGOLD PLANTS

french-marigolds
Image credits: Koopman Blog.

These orange-red flowers grow in abundance in Fraser’s Hill. I have seen them many times over while I vacationed there. No wonder there are little to no mosquitoes at all up there! Yes, it is also the highlands, but still, maybe this plant can help us out down here in Klang Valley too.

Marigolds are sun-loving annuals that come in a variety of shapes and sizes, and are quite easy to grow. They have often been used as companion plants to keep aphids away. Mosquitoes as well, as they don’t like its scent (apparently some humans feel the same, too).

Ingredients:

  • All types of soil
  • Full sunlight at least 6-8 hours (note: strictly outdoors)
  • 50-80ml water for a 6-inch pot

CATNIP PLANTS

catnip-leaves-lo
Image credits: Bonnie Plants.

Plant this and your cat will love you forever and always.

Apparently, catnip is one of the most powerful mosquito repellent plants, and according to recent studies, it is 10 times more effective than DEET at repelling mosquitoes! Sadly, it is a short-lived perennial but it is easy to grow from seed. Well, aside from being repelling to mosquitoes and intoxicating to cats, the catnip leaves can even make you a very soothing cup of tea. Hmmm…

Ingredients:

  • Light and well drained soil
  • Minimal sunlight requirement as plant is hardy and can be kept indoors or outdoors
  • 30-80ml water for a 6-inch pot

How to repel mosquitoes:

Wait just one second… Before you close the tab, the leaves of these plants must be crushed to release the aroma or the mosquitoes cannot smell them. For the rosemary and catnip plants, simply crush a few leaves and rub them on your skin and clothing to enhance the effect.

What? Did you really think that just by planting, the mosquitoes will fled your premises?

For more information on mosquito repelling plants, go to Eco Walk the Talk.

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s