7 Plants That Repel Unwanted Insects, But not Bees

If you want to grow an organic garden and keep the process as natural as possible, you should turn to nature. A lot of the plants in your garden depend on pollinators, namely bees. You do not have to be a beekeeper to like them for their benefits. Now the question is, how to repel insects, but still keep the bees around.


This magnificent plant with a number of its tiny flowers has traditionally been used for adding a pleasant scent to homes and repel pests. Even modern-day air fresheners and toiletries use this plant for its beneficial effects. It is a natural repellant against moths, mosquitoes, flies, and fleas. Not only that, but it also attracts bees into your garden. Lavender loves sunny areas. Plant it around your house close to doors as the first line of defense. You can also keep it inside. Make little cotton bags and fill them with dry lavender for your drawers and wardrobes. They will spread their scent and keep the moths away.


Alliums encompass a large family of species including onions, garlic, leeks, chives, shallots, and scallions. These will make a nice addition to your vegetable garden. They will help you keep flies, worms, and slugs away. However, they have a major downside, they are toxic to your furry friends, namely cats and dogs. On the plus side, this is another family of plants bees love with their white, purple, and pink flowers. Keep them among your vegetables, away from the home, just in case. Do not fear them too much, animals have an instinct which helps them distinguish food from non-food.


Here is another delicious repellent! You already knew you could use it in the kitchen, but now you also know you can use it to keep pests away. You can plant it throughout your garden and yard to keep the mosquitos away, as well as a number of insects harmful to your vegetables. If you boil dried rosemary for half an hour and pour the water into a half-gallon container filled with cold water, you will make a very effective insect repellent. You can keep it in the fridge and use it until it loses its scent.


In order to introduce pest-repelling traits of lemongrass, we have to introduce citronella first. This is a natural oil found in this decorative and useful plant. The oil is known to have repelling effects on mosquitos. You can keep it in containers around your home, or in a wet, but a well-drained spot in your yard. These spots are also the wet areas where mosquitos usually lay eggs, so lemongrass would be eliminating them at the source. Also, they can grow very tall so with the little help of garden shears you can neatly pair them up with some of the shrubs. Which is also an excellent idea as shrubs may retain water around them and provide a good nesting place for mosquitos.


Marigolds are easy to keep as an insect repellent. They are beautiful too look at and not too demanding to grow. They can help you fight off mosquitos and aphids. Also, they are known to boost the growth of other plants, so you want to keep the two together. Spread them throughout your vegetable garden and you will not only keep the insects away but also rabbits may be less likely to approach. Keep them where there is a lot of sun, though. They may be prone to a number of diseases if kept in damp places.


Even though we are used to seeing petunias on balconies and in hanging baskets, they are actually one of the best insect repellants and should not be kept too far away from a vegetable garden. They will effectively protect your organic garden from asparagus beetles, tomato hornworms, aphids, squash bugs, and leafhoppers. They enjoy the sun and they are very easy to grow, it is almost impossible to kill unless you have extremely poor gardening skills. Even though petunias come in a variety of bright colors and have beautiful flowers, bees are not so fond of them. Luckily, even though our tastes may differ, petunias are not harmful to bees. They are very much loved by hummingbirds and butterflies, though.


This herb is a super-efficient insect repellent. It helps control tomato hornworms, whiteflies, small whites, cabbage loopers, cabbage maggots, and corn ear warms. Apart from this use, we know that this herb is used in kitchens throughout the world. It is an evergreen plant which means that it is around for a longer period of time. It also works for mosquitos, but you need to help the process by crushing its leaves.

This is only a selection of the many species nature has designed to help control other species, which we now call parasites and pests. Since we are concerned with sending many insects on their way but keeping the bees you need to mind what you plant in your garden. Here are several species that are not good around bees: Bog rosemary, Amaryllis, Heliconia, Mountain Laurel, Stargazer Lily, Oleander, Yellow Jessamine, Angel’s trumpet, Azalea, and Rhododendron.

7 thoughts on “7 Plants That Repel Unwanted Insects, But not Bees

  1. Avatar photo
    Tom says:

    We grew marigolds in pots that were in wrought iron frames on our brick patio and guess what. They were continually absolutely smothered with whitefly.

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