Chances are, you’ve heard of this one before- it’s one of the most common ingredients in most mosquito repellents. Strange enough though, many people don’t even know that citronella is actually a plant! Citronella is a beautiful perennial clumping grass that emits a strong aroma. That aroma masks other scents, and keeps mosquitoes from being attracted to things located around it. The citronella plant has a much stronger aroma than other mosquito repellents that contain citronella, so it is a great choice. Citronella is very easy to grow, and can get to be a very tall 5 or 6 feet high! You can grow citronella in pots and place it around a porch or patio, or you can plant it directly in a yard or garden bed. It’s a great choice for repelling mosquitoes naturally.
Another great choice for a mosquito repelling plant is lemon balm. A member of the mint family, the plant also known as horsemint and beebalm is a very easy plant for beginning gardeners to grow- even if you don’t have a green thumb! Lemon Balm is a very hardy plant, it resists drought, and it grows well even in shade. It is a very fast growing and sometimes aggressive plant, so you might want to contain it to a pot, where you can move it to wherever you like to ensure that it doesn’t take over your garden! An added bonus? You can dry the leaves and use them to make a delicious herbal tea!
Your feline friends will be happy to know that catnip is a great mosquito deterrent! In fact, in a 2010 study, researchers found that catnip is 10 times more effective than DEET, the ingredient commonly found in bug repellents. It is a very easy plant to grow, and if you have cats in the house, they will surely be happy to have it around. However, be careful not to plant catnip in with other flowers, veggies, or herbs if you have cats around your garden. They will surely roll around in the catnip and smash everything nearby!
A bright, hardy annual plant, marigolds are a great choice for repelling mosquitoes. Marigolds contain Pyrethrum, an ingredient found in many insect repellents, and they have a unique aroma which bugs find repulsive. The flowers themselves are beautiful and can make a great border or addition to any flower bed! Try placing them around borders of your home, and mosquitoes might not want to cross over!
Calling all cooks! Want a double whammy when it comes to mosquito protection? Plant some basil! Not only will you have a quick and easy mosquito repellent, you will also have a delicious fresh herb on hand to add to all of your favorite recipes! There are many different varieties of basil around, so feel free to experiment and find the ones that you like best. Many expert gardeners recommend trying lemon basil or cinnamon basil to deter insects.
You probably know that lavender is a gorgeous purple flowering plant with a soothing, calming scent. But, did you know that it is also a natural mosquito repellent? Grow it indoors near a sunny window, or outside in your garden or flower bed to keep the bugs away. While you’re at it, make a delicious herbal tea, or use lavender to fill your home with a wonderful calming aroma.
Most bugs despise the smell and taste of peppermint, so planting it around your home is a great way to keep them from dropping by uninvited! Plus, if you do happen to get bitten, peppermint leaves rubbed directly onto the skin make a great itch relief treatment! Added bonus for the wonderful minty smell that makes a delicious addition to food and beverages!
Unfortunately for all of us who love Italian food, studies have shown that EATING garlic does not repel mosquitoes. (Unless, however, you were to eat a HUGE amount!) However, having garlic around DOES! Make sure to add some garlic to your flower bed or vegetable garden for added protection!
The adorable pennyroyal flower is a natural deterrent for mosquitoes! Make sure to plant some around your flowerbeds! Pennyroyal plants also make great groundcovers, and they attract a plethora of beautiful butterflies. Some people even use pennyroyal to flavor certain fish dishes. As you can see, this plant has plenty of benefits!
Rosemary is a beautiful flowering plant that is often used to flavor lamb or fish dishes, but did you know that it is also a natural mosquito repellent? It’s perfect to add to your herb garden or flowerbed to keep bugs away, and it even attracts butterflies!
Plus you can simply snip a few springs off every time you need to add extra flavor to your lamb or steak!
This beautiful flowering plant is a great choice for mosquito repellent. When planted in a hanging container, the colorful blooms will cascade over the side of the pot, providing a beautiful visual piece as well as a very useful bug repellent!
As you can see, there are many different plants out there that can help to keep bugs away! Next time you reach for the chemical bug spray, take a minute and think again, and choose something more natural!
ZITA’S Floral Tiara
Zita, an Italian Mastiff Puppy, is the trusted friend, protector and mascot of Suzanne, owner of Suz Scenery Inc. Zita loves going to work in the morning and is a favorite of many customers. Zita is often sighted cruising in the company vehicle sporting her floral tiara created by Wendy the” Pipe Cleaner Lady. ”
WHAT IS A BULB?
A BULB is a nutritional unit that sustains the plant when it’s to cold or to hot to flower. It stores the plant’s food during it’s dormant period, (Late Spring, when the foliage dies – to early Fall when roots form for a new growth cycle.)
TWO CLASSIFICATIONS OF BULBS:
HARDY BULBS are cold insensitive, Spring blooming Bulbs. Varieties of Hardy Bulbs include: Tulips, Crocus, Daffodils, Hyacinth, Anemone, Iris, Freesia, Narcissus.
Some HARDY BULBS are Fall – Winter blooming Bulbs. A common variety of this Hardy Bulb is Cyclamen.
TENDER BULBS are cold sensitive, Summer blooming, Bulbs. In climate (ZONES 4 – 8), Tender Bulbs generally will not survive the winter months. In these zones, Tender Bulbs are planted in the early Spring, after the ground warms up, then you dig them up in the late Fall to store for the Winter. Varieties of Tender Bulbs include Elephant’s Ear, Caladium, Gladiolus, Canna, Dahlia.
PLANT ALL BULBS as soon as u buy them. If you need to store Hardy or Tender Bulbs, keep them in a cool, dry place like your garage or basement. Warmth and moisture will signal the Bulbs to start growing. Occasionally check for mold or softness.
TULIPS AND DAFFODILS are blended here to perfection. This was designed with your front walkway in mind. Create interest and beauty by planting Hardy hot pink Tulips and gorgeous two-tone Daffodils. In March and April, you can look for Daffodils first, thenTulips in your garden.
NARCISSUS (Also known as Paperwhites) are lively, perky Spring flowering bulbs that produce a strong, pure-white cluster of star-shaped flowers with an intense fragrance.
WHAT TO KNOW ABOUT BULBS
WHEN TO PLANT BULBS & WHEN TO CUT BACK BULBS
HARDY BULBS are planted in Fall, any time before the ground freezes. This is because Bulbs require a long cool temperature period to spark their growth process.
TENDER BULBS are planted in the early Spring, after the ground defrosts.
After the BULB”S FLOWER FADES, allow the leafy foliage to die back naturally. This process takes about 8 weeks but is vital to the preservation of the plant.
ARE BULBS PERENNIAL?
A FREQUENT MISCONCEPTION about Bulbs is that they are annual plants and do not come back year after year with the same vigor. Through photosynthesis, the leafy foliage reinvigorates the bulb. After the flower blooms and fades, you should remove the spent flowers. Respect the green foliage and allowed the plant to die back naturally. This rejuvenation process takes approximately 8 weeks to complete. The plant is now in a dormant state and can be cut back to 1” – 2” from ground.
HOW TO PLANT BULBS!
TO ENCOURAGE REPEAT PERFORMANCE: *I recommend planting Bulbs in a well drained area. *Plant the Bulbs Deep! The depth of the planting area should equal 4x the height of the bulb. *It is quickest and easiest to dig an entire planting bed, instead of one hole at a time. *Place Bulbs in planting bed with pointed end up. *Sprinkle Bulb food like “Organic Bone Meal Fertilizer” on top of the Bulbs. *Backfill the planting bed with soil. *Adding Mulch? Include the mulch in your calculations.
ZONE & CLIMATE CONTROL
*In COLD CLIMATES (ZONE 1 -4), Hardy Bulb planting can be done as early as late August – September.
*In (ZONE 4 – 7), Hardy Bulb planting can be done between September – November.
*In WARM CLIMATES (ZONE 9), you need to cool Hardy Bulbs before planting. With the exception of Daffodils and Narcissus, refrigerate Hardy Bulbs at a temperature of 40F – 45F, for a minimum of 6 – 16 weeks.
COMMONLY you have read, “The Rule of Thumb” is to plant Bulbs at a depth 3x their height. Interpreting this means, if a Daffodil Bulb is approximately 2” tall, you should dig a hole 6” deep.
I DISAGREE… I recommend planting Bulbs at a minimum depth of 4x the height of the Bulb. Digging deep, encourages the Bulb to come back vigorously year after year. This also deters predators from reaching and eating the bulbs.
IS YOUR SOIL HEALTHY?
Mycorrhizae are nature’s soil inoculants. They are tiny fungal filaments that work symbiotically with plant roots to help them absorb more moisture and nutrients. They also release enzymes which help break down nutrients into forms more easily utilized by the plant. Mycorrhizae occur naturally in soil but are often depleted by cultivation, chemical use, compaction or topsoil erosion. Re-introducing them to soil or directly to your plant’s roots is easy