TAMPA - Mosquitoes are out in full force, luckily sprays and candles aren’t the only way to keep them bay.
Here's a list of certain plants that can also keep the mosquitoes away:
Lavender - While a lot of people may enjoy the smell of lavender, mosquitoes aren’t a fan.
Lemongrass - Not only can lemongrass be used in recipes, it can also help repel mosquitoes. The grass grows fast so experts recommend keeping it in a pot to help it from spreading to unwanted places.
Catnip - Catnip is in the mint family and is said to be a very powerful insect repellent.
Peppermint - Peppermint Oil can be found in some all-natural insect repellents.
Rosemary - This herb may be perfect for flavoring chicken or pork, but it’s also good for keeping away the mosquitoes. If you’re having a BBQ or bonfire, soak some rosemary in water and toss it on the grill or in the fire to help with the bugs.
Wax myrtle - This shrub grows well in Florida and is commonly used as a hedge.
Beautyberry - By rubbing Beautyberry leaves on your skin you can help save yourself from a few bug bites. Sunken Garden’s, garden specialist, Jen Tyson says, “Scientist have actually proved that the Tocobaga, and other tribes in Florida, used these for a reason and it's absolutely true, they do repel mosquitos.”
In order for the plants to be be effect in repelling mosquitoes they must be jostled around to release the plant's natural oils.
“So it's these oils that the mosquitos just don't like the smell of. It's not killing the mosquitoes, it just makes them turn their nose up and decide I don't want to be here,” says Tyson.
If you don’t have a green thumb, there are other natural ways to fight the mosquitoes.Bat houses can bring in mosquito eating bats.
Mosquitofish can also make a good addition to a back yard pond. These tiny fish dine on mosquito larva, eliminating them before they have a chance to hatch and dine on you.
Hillsborough County will be giving away free Mosquitofish throughout the summer.