Mosquito Repelling Devices – Do They Work?

“Virtually every year, a new product appears on the market that claims to be the answer for the elimination of mosquito nuisance. In nearly every case, the promotion is accompanied by a great deal of advertising, but the merits of the product are rarely backed with scientific testing. The American public has invested billions of dollars in zappers, repellers, and plants that claim they will keep mosquitoes from biting. ”

This quote is from Dr. Wayne J. Crans, Professor of Entomology, Rudgers .

In this post I will review a number of products for keeping mosquitoes away and determine if they work. Unless specified differently, the following quotes are taken from Dr. Crans’ report.

Mosquito Repelling Devices - Do They Work?
Mosquito Repelling Devices – Do They Work?

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Mosquito Apps for Your Smart Phone – Do They Keep Mosquitoes Away?

There are mosquito apps for your smart phone that are designed to keep mosquitoes away. You can even view a Youtube video that does the same thing. In both cases, a high frequency sound is emitted that scares skeeters away.

This sounds like great technology since most people now have a smart phone. When you go outside, all you have to do is turn on the app and enjoy a mosquito-free environment. No more bites and you don’t need to lather on chemicals.

This is a case of where a little science has been used to create a new gardening myth and make some money.

Mosquito Apps for Your Smart Phone - Do They Keep Mosquitoes Away?
Mosquito Apps for Your Smart Phone – Do They Keep Mosquitoes Away?, image by Stoppestinfo

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Mosquito Repellents That Work Against Zika Virus

Many people are against synthetic chemicals and will not consider products like DEET. As I have reported before in DEET- is It Safe?, DEET is quite safe but many still do not believe the facts.

In the last couple of weeks the Zika virus has been all over the news. The World Health Organization has declared Zika virus a ‘public health emergency’ of international concern.

Which mosquito repellents work best against Zika? Are any of the organic products recommended? It is time to have another look at the mosquito problem.

Mosquito Repellents That Work Against Zika Virus
Mosquito Repellents That Work Against Zika Virus

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Mosquito Repellents – Best Options

DEET is the standard in mosquito repellants. It is both effective and safe, as reported in DEET – Is It Safe? But what are the alternatives? Do natural extracts work as well as DEET? Are there safer man-made products? Are there better natural products? In this blog post I will review the current options that are worth considering.

If you are looking to fend off the Zika virus, check this out: Mosquito Repellents That Work Against Zika

Testing Mosquito Repellents
Testing Mosquito Repellents

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DEET – Is It Safe?

DEET is the standard for repelling mosquitoes. Some people are looking for an alternative because they want something safer. That makes sense only if DEET is not already safe.

In some circles it is reported that DEET causes autism and neurological disorders. But is this really true? How safe is DEET?

DEET- Is It Safe
“I would not go canoeing without DEET” – the author, on the Coppermine River

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Best Fragrant Plants to Repel Mosquitoes

Mosquitoes are a pain for every gardener, and over the years a number of plants have been recommended to repel mosquitoes.  Almost all of these plants are fragrant and include such things as catnip, citronella grass, beebalm, marigolds, lemon balm, lavender, geraniums, thyme, wormwood, rosemary and various mints. If you plant these in your garden you will have less mosquitoes – or so the proponents claim.

Will plants growing in your garden or on your deck keep mosquitoes away?

Mosquitoes Repelled By Fragrant Plants
Mosquitoes Repelled By Fragrant Plants

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Mosquito Plant, Pelargonium Citrosum – The Citrosa Plant

The mosquito plant, Pelargonium Citrosum , also called the citrosa plant or citronella scented geranium, is highly recommended for keeping mosquitoes away. This plant is marketed as being specifically developed to continually give off a mosquito repelling scent. Turns out you can grow this plant in many gardens.

The mosquito plant has been confused by some in the horticulture industry, and falsely called the citronella plant. In Citronella Plant keeps Mosquitoes Away, I explained and clarified this mixup.

 

Mosquito Plant (Pelargonium'Citrosum')
Mosquito Plant (Pelargonium’Citrosum’)

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Citronella Plant – Does it Really Keep Mosquitoes Away?

Mosquitoes are becoming a more important pest as new varieties move north in North America, and the incidence of diseases increases. Around here there is a big concern about the West Nile Virus so it is only natural that people try to find simple ways to keep mosquitoes away.

A very common solution is citronella. Some suggest planting the citronella plant next to your patio to keep mosquitoes away. Others rely on citronella candles. These solutions are just myths.

Pelargonium Citrosum - marketed as "mosquito plant"
Pelargonium Citrosum – marketed as “mosquito plant”

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