List of pest-repelling plants

This list of pest-repelling plants includes plants used for their ability to repel insects, nematodes, and other pests. They have been used in companion planting as pest control in agricultural and garden situations, and in households.

Certain plants have shown effectiveness as topical repellents for haematophagous insects, such as the use of lemon eucalyptus in PMD, but incomplete research and misunderstood applications can produce variable results.[1]

The essential oils of many plants are also well known for their pest-repellent properties. Oils from the families Lamiaceae (mints), Poaceae (true grasses), and Pinaceae (pines) are common haematophagous insect repellents worldwide.[1]

Plants that can be planted or used fresh to repel pests include:

Plant Pests
artemisias repels insects,[2] including ants, cabbage looper, cabbage maggot, carrot fly, codling moth, flea beetles, whiteflies, the Cabbage White, and the Small White, as well as mice[3]
basil repels flies, including mosquitoes[2][4] the carrot fly, asparagus beetles and whiteflies[3]
borage repels tomato hornworm and cabbage worms[2]
castor bean repels moles[3]
catnip repels ants, flea beetles, aphids, the Japanese beetle, squash bugs, weevils,[2] the Colorado potato beetle, the cabbage looper,[3] and cockroaches.[4] May attract cats.
chamomile repels flying insects[4]
chives repels carrot fly, Japanese beetle,[2] and aphids[3]
chrysanthemums repel roaches, ants, the Japanese beetle, ticks, silverfish, lice, fleas, bedbugs, and root-knot nematodes[2]
citronella grass repels insects, may deter cats[5]
citrosa proven not to repel mosquitoes[6]
clovers repel aphids and wireworms[3]
common lantana repels mosquitoes[1]
coriander repels aphids, Colorado potato beetle, and spider mites[3]
cosmos repel the corn earworm
crown imperial repel rabbits, mice, moles, voles and ground squirrels[7]
dahlias repel nematodes[2]
dill repels aphids, squash bugs, spider mites,[2] the cabbage looper, and the Small White[3]
epazote repels spider mites,[8] thrips aphids, and whitefly[9]
eucalyptus repels aphids, the cabbage looper, and the Colorado potato beetle[3]
fennel repels aphids, slugs, and snails[3]
fever tea repels mosquitoes[1]
four o'clocks attract and poison the Japanese beetle[2]
French marigold repels whiteflies, kills nematodes[2]
garlic repels root maggots,[2] cabbage looper, Mexican bean beetle, and peach tree borer.
geraniums repel leafhoppers, the corn earworm, and the Small White[3]
hyssop repels the cabbage looper and the Small White[3]
larkspurs repel aphids[3]
lavender repels moths, scorpions, water scorpions, fleas, and flies, including mosquitoes[4]
leek repels carrot fly[3]
lemongrass repels mosquitoes[10]
lemon balm repels mosquitoes[4]
lemon thyme repels mosquitoes[4]
lettuce repels carrot fly[3]
lime basil repels mosquitoes[1]
Mexican marigold repels insects and rabbits[2]
myrrh repels insects[5]
narcissus repel moles[3]
nasturtiums repel squash bugs,[2] aphids (though there is conflicting information with some sources stating it attracts aphids),[11] many beetles, and the cabbage looper[3]
onion repels rabbits, the cabbage looper, and the Small White[3]
oregano repellent to many pests[3]
parsley repels asparagus beetles[3]
peppermint repels aphids, cabbage looper, flea beetles, squash bugs, whiteflies, and the Small White[3]
petunias repel aphids, tomato hornworm, asparagus beetles, leafhoppers,[2] and squash bugs[3]
pitcher plants traps and ingests insects
radish repels cabbage maggot and cucumber beetles[3]
rosemary repels cabbage looper, carrot fly, cockroaches and mosquitoes,[12] slugs, snails, as well as the Mexican bean beetle[3]
russian sage repels wasps
rue repels cucumber and flea beetles
Sarracenia pitcher plants are especially proficient at trapping yellowjacket wasps
spearmint repels fleas, moths, ants, beetles, rodents,[4] aphids, squash bugs, and the cabbage looper[3]
spiny amaranth repels cutworms
stone root repels mosquitoes[5]
summer savory repels bean beetles[3]
tansy repels ants, many beetles and flies, squash bugs, cutworms, Small White, and Cabbage White[3]
thyme repels cabbage looper, cabbage maggot, corn earworm, whiteflies, tomato hornworm, and Small White
tobacco repels carrot fly, flea beetles and worms.[3]
tomato repels asparagus beetles[3]
venus flytrap ingests insects[4]


  1. ^ a b c d e Maia MF, Moore SJ (March 2011). "Plant-based insect repellents: a review of their efficacy, development and testing". Malaria Journal. 10 Suppl 1 (Suppl 1): S11. doi:10.1186/1475-2875-10-S1-S11. PMC 3059459. PMID 21411012.
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n Hummel, K. Use plants for pest control. Archived 2015-02-14 at the Wayback Machine Coles County Yard and Garden. University of Illinois Extension.
  3. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s t u v w x y z aa ab ac "Companion Planting" (PDF). Cornell Cooperative Extension. Chemung County. May 1999. Archived from the original (PDF) on May 29, 2014.
  4. ^ a b c d e f g h Clarke, C. Indoor pest-repellent plants. SFGate: San Francisco Chronicle.
  5. ^ a b c Plants help keep mosquitoes away. Colorado State University & Denver County Extension Master Gardener. 2010.
  6. ^ "Mosquito Plant, Pelargonium Citrosum - The Citrosa Plant". 2015-06-08. Retrieved 2016-09-26.
  7. ^ Diana Beresford-Kroeger (2004). A Garden for Life: The Natural Approach to Designing, Planting, and Maintaining a North Temperate Garden. p. 171. ISBN 9780472030125.
  8. ^ Chiasson, H.; Bostanian, N. J.; Vincent, C. (August 2004). "Acaricidal properties of a Chenopodium-based botanical". Journal of Economic Entomology. 97 (4): 1373–1377. doi:10.1093/jee/97.4.1373. ISSN 0022-0493. PMID 15384350.
  9. ^ Chiasson, H.; Vincent, C.; Bostanian, N. J. (August 2004). "Insecticidal properties of a Chenopodium-based botanical". Journal of Economic Entomology. 97 (4): 1378–1383. doi:10.1093/jee/97.4.1378. ISSN 0022-0493. PMID 15384351.
  10. ^ "12 plants that repel unwanted insects". 2014-10-02. Retrieved 2017-10-19.
  11. ^ "Managing Pests in Gardens: Floriculture: Nasturtium—UC IPM".
  12. ^ "5 Herbs That Keep Bugs Away". 2017-07-08. Retrieved 2018-08-04.