do mint and marigolds really keep skeeters at bay?

Discussion in 'Homesteading Questions' started by vegascowgirl, Mar 6, 2005.

  1. vegascowgirl

    vegascowgirl Try Me

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    I saw on a PBS show that mint and/or marigolds will keep mesquitos and flys away. Has anyone ever tried these? Do they work. I might just try them even if no one has had much success with them....kind of a scientific experiment so to say.
     
  2. chas

    chas Well-Known Member

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    My dad propagates a plant called mesquito plant . It's has a very high citranella content.One in a pot by each door seems to work.Marigolds work with some bugs and not others.
     

  3. vegascowgirl

    vegascowgirl Try Me

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    Thanks Chas, I've seen those in at least one of my seed catalogs...I'll have to start looking through them again.
     
  4. BCR

    BCR Well-Known Member

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    No. Mosquito dunks help though (put them in any standing water--find 'em online). And bat boxes too.

    But eliminate standing water in puddles any and everywhere or treat with the dunks, unless you have fish that eat the larva. Makes a huge difference. I now use a partial dunk in our rainwater collection for the garden. No harm to animals/pets/wildlife. Make sure to treat water troughs, etc.
     
  5. lacyj

    lacyj Well-Known Member

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    Feverfew is supose to work for flying insects, I have them planted around the picnic table, don't know how well they work tho.
     
  6. AngieM2

    AngieM2 Big Front Porch advocate Supporter

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    Catnip seems to work,

    I know I buy regular catnip for cats, and put it in a drip coffee pot and make a "tea" from it. Let it cool and use it for a spray or rub on. Safe, cause you can drink catnip, and doesn't sting and isn't sticky and does work. We've used it for porch sitting. My uncle and I. Then my daughter uses it on my grandson, and my doubting son-in-law tried it when he was being eaten up, and it's worked for us last summer.

    Angie
     
  7. mightybooboo

    mightybooboo Well-Known Member

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    We have a lot of mint in front and back yards.We usually have mosquitos but this year didnt have many at all.Think its just a fluke this year,lets see what the future populations look like

    BooBoo
     
  8. Quint

    Quint Well-Known Member

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    Not that I could tell. I had heard the same thing. I planted rafts of marigolds, mint, catnip and some other plant the nursery lady told me was suppose to keep away mosquitoes last year. They about carried me away last year and that is quite a feat being that I'm about 6'7" and 300 pounds. I tell myself they like me cuz I'm just so darn irresistibly sweet but upon more thoughtful and honest consideration, I kinda freakin' doubt it
     
  9. travlnusa

    travlnusa Well-Known Member

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    You can not beat bats. We have a bathouse on every south facing wall of every building. You would not believe the difference it makes!
     
  10. Quint

    Quint Well-Known Member

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    I'm really interested in doing that but how in the world do you keep the wasps from building in them?
     
  11. gobug

    gobug Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Plants are myth and marketing when it comes to bug control, just like those ultrasonic devices. Save your money. Follow the advice on using dunks in still water. Mosquito's lay eggs in still water and they can hatch in 48 hours. The dunk release an organism, bacillus thurengensis (sp) that attacks them. Eliminate standing water, and use dunks where you cannot.

    As for bats, they are great also, but they have a mind of their own. Consider yourself lucky if they actually inhabit your bat box. I have captured bats and tried to "install" them, and had bat boxes in an area with bats for years; all to no avail. If you have bats in the neighborhood, it doesn't really matter where they sleep, since their space is large and they work for you whenever they live nearby.
     
  12. sidepasser

    sidepasser Well-Known Member

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    I have bats in my barn...I've been trying to encourage them to roost elsewhere..not happening...population increases every year...baby bats are born every year..

    they eat a ton of insects and make a huge, huge stinky mess right in my feed room..and it is very hard to discourage them from returning each year despite bat houses...They rather like hanging upside down right in my feedroom as opposed to the lovely, custom built bat houses scattered all over the property...

    So I guess if they like where they are at..they stay, and they seem to LOVE my place. I talked with a bat conservatory and they recommended that I spray with bleach the roost area (its quite small considering how many bats I had last year) so I did that and did they leave? Nope, decided that a bleached, clean roost was even nicer and by end of summer I had more than 30 living in my feedroom.

    Can't eliminate the openings as they fly in through the barn door (10 ft. x 12ft) and also come in through the stall windows (4ft x 4ft)..

    I tried netting (don't do that, they get trapped in it) and if you capture them and take them somewhere else within 30 miles, they can beat you back home with their wonderful homing instinct.

    So I'm stuck with bats although they leave during the winter, in April they always return...

    Want some?
    Sidepasser
     
  13. bergere

    bergere Just living Life

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    Catnip plant works really well. Have been using it for 3 years.
     
  14. Mutti

    Mutti Well-Known Member Supporter

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    We always have bats swooping around at nite...fun to watch. Didn't know they eat lots of skeeters. We almost never have skeeters here...live on top of a hill with a breeze most of the time. Am diligent about anything with water...scrub horse tanks,bird baths,dog buckets,etc. twice weekly. Never leave old buckets,tires or such around to collect rainwater. Know it must help as I am one of those "tasty"people and when we lived in MI would get eaten up every year. Know our neighbors complain about the skeeters so think the cleaning up works. DEE
     
  15. wy0mn

    wy0mn Transplanted RedNeck

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    Sidepasser.
    Bat guano is worth its weight in GOLD!
    Let the bats have that room & reap the profits. Put your grain elsewhere.
     
  16. southerngurl

    southerngurl le person Supporter

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  17. vegascowgirl

    vegascowgirl Try Me

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    Thanks for all the advice. Think I'll try catnip rather than marigolds/mint. As for bats, well they're o.k as long as they stick to caves....no offense but I don't want to invite them with houses. I can handle mice, but mice with wings creep me out :confused: . I know that they are pretty much harmless, but have always heard of bats carrying rabies....just can't get past that mentally.
     
  18. cowgirlone

    cowgirlone Well-Known Member

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    I raise marigolds to use as dye for my wool. I don't think they do a thing to repel mosquitos.
    Sometimes when I'm in the yard at night I crush mint leaves and rub them on my arms........seems to keep them away.

    We have lots of barn swallows here. They do a pretty good job on the mosquito population.
     
  19. sidepasser

    sidepasser Well-Known Member

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    I use eucalyptus oil in my fly spray for the horses. That pretty much keeps the flying bloodmobiles away and makes the horses smell good (and I breathe a lot better too). I also use citronella oil and it seems to work.

    Never had marigolds work for anything...except my cat seems to hate them and shreds them in the garden.

    Sidepasser