Insect-Repelling Herbs

basilStop. Don’t reach for those pesticides. Many times, insects end up controlling themselves, but did you know that some plants have insect-repelling qualities? I have picked out a few that will grow here in the Valley and can be planted along with other plants as companion plantings.

Thyme works great with cabbage and likes to be grown in an area that receives afternoon shade. It repels cabbage worms and takes care of many of other insect pests that may be bothering your garden.

No garden should go without tansy in it. I grow it in the shade with a little morning sun and it produces a yellow flower when in bloom. I use tansy as a deterrent around my home or by spreading the leaves on my patio.

Nasturtiums are one of the easiest plants to grow from seeds and they spread out all over the garden. Their leaves and flowers are edible and they work great as a trap crop. What does a trap crop mean? Well, it’s a plant that insects prefer over other plants when they are feeding.

Nasturtiums work kind of like a plant decoy. Aphids, white flies and other bugs love to hang out in nasturtiums.

Basil is one of the easiest plants to grow in a pot. It’s edible, but it also wards off flies and mosquitoes, so try some around your outdoor cooking areas.

One of the prettiest plants has got to be lavender. It’s tall and spiky with purple flowers and gray foliage. It makes a great accent to any landscape. It holds up best when planted in well-drained soil. Because of its scent, lavender makes a great addition to any garden and it also repels ants. And, of course, don’t forget garlic. It repels bores, beatles, aphids and spider mites. Don’t forget that roses should not be planted with garlic growing underneath them.

Dave Owens the Garden Guy
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