How to Keep Mosquitoes Away from Your Home

Learn how to safeguard your home, lawn and landscape from mosquitoes.

As anyone who has ever spent a summer evening in the open air knows, mosquitoes are a nuisance. With their whining buzz and relentless search for blood, they can drive even the hardiest outdoor lovers indoors with ease. They can also pose a health risk. Due to climate change, Canadians are facing an increased risk from mosquito-borne diseases. Learning how to control mosquitoes is an important step toward safeguarding your home and outdoor spaces. Follow these tips to repel and control mosquitoes and help prevent future problems.

Kill and Repel Mosquitoes

Kill mosquitoes in the air

Quickly kill mosquitoes around your deck or patio with Ortho® Mosquito B Gon™ Max Flying Insect Killer Area Spray. The fast-fogging action kills mosquitoes (and flies, black flies and gnats) on contact. The product is easy to use - simply point the special fogging nozzle away from you in a slightly downward direction, then spray. Use in outdoor areas where bugs are a bother, including backyards, patios and decks. Provides longer control when sprayed just beyond the immediate area. Because it's portable and ready to use, this spray is perfect for camping and backpacking, too.Light candles or lanterns.

Help keep mosquitoes away from your patio and porch by lighting candles or lanterns that contain one or more essential oils known to repel mosquitoes. These oils include:

  • Citronella
  • Clove
  • Cedarwood
  •  Lavender
  • Eucalyptus
  • Peppermint
  • Rosemary
  • Lemongrass
  • Geraniol

Mosquito-repelling candles work best in small areas without a lot of air movement.

Set mosquito traps

You can also use mosquito traps to help keep mosquitoes away from your porch or patio. However, it's important to change the traps regularly. If you're having an outdoor party, traps can be an effective way to protect your guests from mosquitoes, especially when used along with other mosquito controls and repellent products.

Spray on personal repellents

If you plan to do work in your yard or even just sit out on your patio, remember that mosquitoes are most active during early morning and twilight hours. During these times, use a personal repellent designed specifically for humans. These sprays can be highly effective, but they do wear off. So, if you plan to be outdoors for a long period of time, be sure to keep your spray handy.

Prevent Future Mosquito Problems

Eliminate standing water

Many (though not all) female mosquitoes lay their eggs in standing water. Since it only takes about a week for a mosquito to go from egg to adult, getting rid of the standing water on your property can help reduce the number of mosquitoes that will plague your next backyard barbeque.

  • Empty water that has collected in children's toys, garden pots, buckets, trash can lids, wheelbarrows, or other items lying around that could collect water.
  • Inspect gutters for clogs and clean them regularly to prevent water collection.
  • If you have a birdbath, change the water regularly.
  • Walk your property and address any low spots in the lawn that collect water or areas that have poor drainage.

Clean up debris

A kiddie pool isn't the only thing that can provide a breeding ground for mosquitoes. Some types of mosquitoes lay their eggs in damp soil or debris, such as decaying logs and leaf piles, so be sure to clear them away. Remember to remove leaves and other debris from gutters, too. If you continue to have a problem with mosquitoes and have a lot of shade in your yard, you may want to consider having your trees trimmed to increase light levels and make your landscape less habitable to these pests.

Plant mosquito-repelling plants

The potent fragrances and essential oils in some plants, such as lavender, and marigolds, naturally repel mosquitoes. If you enjoy spending time outdoors on your deck or patio, pot up a few of these plants and set them around the perimeter to naturally help keep mosquitoes at bay—and add a little beauty to the setting. Other mosquito-repelling plants include

  • Citronella (and other scented geraniums)
  • Lemongrass
  • Rosemary
  • Catnip
  • Bee balm
  • Ageratum
  • Peppermint
  • Basil
  • Sage

A mosquito bite is definitely annoying, but it's the threat of mosquito-transmitted illness that really makes these insects a serious problem.