Natural Backyard Mosquito Control on the Cheap

by Reader Contributors

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Don’t let mosquitos take control of your backyard. Use these natural methods to affordably keep mosquitos at bay.

Dear Dollar Stretcher,
Do you have any inexpensive hints on how to take back the backyard from the mosquitoes this summer?

I would like to enjoy the great outdoors in my country home again.
Linda B.

Bats Naturally Control Mosquitos

Buy a bat house! My co-operative extension has them at a reasonable price (they also sell birdhouses). Put the houses up according to the directions (for the correct height and amount of sunlight) and let the bats do the work.

We camp all summer at a wooded lot and have almost no mosquitoes there. The bats come out each night. We can watch them as we sit around the campfire.

If you are handy with tools, you can build your own bat house from scrap wood. Directions are available from the co-operative extension or online.

Lemon Mosquito Control

Mosquitoes hate lemon scent. I spray my entire yard with equal parts of lemon dish soap, lemon ammonia, and lemon juice. Do this every two weeks with a 20-gallon sprayer, and you won’t be on the mosquito menu this summer.

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Short Grass Prevents Mosquito Breeding

Keep the grass cut as short as possible and clear away any kinds of containers that might hold collected water (tubs, barrels, lids, etc.) in which mosquitoes love to breed.

Garlic Controls Mosquitos

You should be able to go to your local nursery or plant store and ask for a product called Garlic Barrier. You spray it on with a fertilizer sprayer. There are certain guidelines that you must follow to get the best results.

For example, you must spray it on a day with low winds and no rain in the forecast for a few days ahead. It’s very successful when applied correctly and will not harm children or pets.
Amy of Richmond, MI

Grandma’s Natural Mosquito Control

Lemongrass is a natural mosquito repellent and one that my grandmother swears by. Depending on the layout of the area you’re trying to “de-mosquito,” you may even be able to plant some directly into your gardens or borders. We are going to put pots of lemongrass around the deck area in our backyard.

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Bounce Mosquito Control

Put a Bounce dryer sheet in the waistband of your clothes and it will ward off mosquitoes. Also make sure you don’t have standing water in the yard.

Mosquito Control by Purple Martins

For mosquito control, nothing beats purple martins and mud martins.

Put up some purple martin houses. We got our 12 family birdhouse and the pole at Walmart. These birds eat their weight in mosquitoes every day. When the little mud martins come and build their little mud houses in the eaves of your house, don’t tear them down. They are very much worth the mess they make. We never have mosquitoes when they take up residence.

Alas, we moved a block away last year and they didn’t find us, but hopefully they will this year.

Citronella in the Backyard

Having lived in towns where mosquitoes and malaria were a problem I managed to control this by doing the following:

Citronella! I had citronella plants all over my garden, burnt citronella oil in my candles and bought citronella candles for outdoors from the store, added citronella oil to my cream and shampoo, and sprinkled citronella oil around my house! When going outside, we used to either rub some cream around the exposed areas of our body or rub several drops of citronella oil in our hands and then wipe our hands on our clothes and especially our ankles.

Reviewed June 2023

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