We live in a pretty mosquito-loving area with a woody backyard and many pools of mud around our development. So every year, we bring out the arsenal. The organic pest control arsenal that is.
I have rated our experiences with these mosquito repellents on a Mosquito Repellency Rating (MRR) of 1 to 10. 10 being the best. I’ve also tried to some links to sources for purchase. (Disclaimer: Some of the links are affiliates and support Permaculture Gardens.)
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1. EcoSmart Organic Mosquito Fogger
Active Ingredients: Geraniol.3.0%Rosemary oil2.0%Peppermint oil.0.4%Other ingredients*.94.6% *Water, Mineral oil (U.S.P.), Wintergreen oil, Polyglyceryl oleate, Lecithins, Nitrogen
2. Bug Zapper
The downers for me are that I am not certain how many mosquitoes I am killing (except for some dead carcasses inside the lamp) and that it only works within a small radius of about 2 feet. It can also kill other good bugs. Still, I like that it is generally passive and effective.
According to Cornell University Extension Toxicology Network, allethrin “is a synthetic duplicate of a component of pyrethrum. Pyrethrum is a botanical insecticide extracted from chrysanthemum flowers. Allethrin, the first synthetic pyrethroid, was introduced in 1949, and is a mixture of several isomeric forms.”
So I guess it must be good to plant a lot of chrysanthemums around your yard too! Make sure you buy the right kind of chrysanthemums though.
The radius around which this thermacell is effective in my experience is also pretty small. I would hazard a guess at around the same 2 feet as the bug zapper. However, we definitely feel a difference when working in the garden using this little device.
4. Mosquito dunks
I would say, it is hard to measure its effectiveness since it is supposed to suppress the actual spawning of larvae and not existing populations. I think this is still a good supportive measure to take.
5. Mosquito Fish
I have done this in a mini-fish pond I created but couldn’t quite tell if the mosquito fish were working as we also had frogs as guests that year. Frogs as you may know, love water and mosquitoes.
MRR: (yet to be determined)
6. Mosquito Coils
Growing up in the land of mosquitoes: the Philippines, we used to burn these mosquito coils which we call “katol.” Unbeknownst to me, these were pretty bad chemical-wise. However, there is an organic Japanese version of these coils that can be bought online. The coils are also made from pyrethrum (see thermacell above) and are safe to use.
MRR: (unknown as I have not tried the organic kind yet)
7. Mosquito Gear
During our eldest daughter Zoe’s adenoid surgery, I was asked to suit up in a “disposable” germ-free operating room suit. I wore it but did not dispose of it. Instead, I had the idea to roll it up, stuff it in my purse and save it for later. What for? I figured it was hardly used and might serve to protect against… you guessed it! Mosquitoes!
I then gave the suit to my husband Dave to wear whenever he would go and work in the garden (since he is more prone to bug bites than I am). He loved it and wore that disposable suit to death.
Here he is below in an old instagram photo I took of him heading out to garden in the summer.
The point is, you can be creative.
What do you find to be effective against mosquitoes?
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