10 Indoor Plants That Repel Bugs

One of the most annoying things to deal with as a homeowner is pests. Sometimes, no matter how much you clean the house, they always seem to be around. Not only are they a pain to deal with, they also carry germs that can cause a multitude of diseases. For protection from roaches, flies, bed bugs, mosquitoes, and ants, you can spend a pretty penny stocking up on bug spray and pesticide. But did you know that the mere presence of some plants in your home is enough to send these pesky bugs running?

In this article we will learn about which plants you need to have inside your home if you want to get rid of pests.

Which plants help repel bugs?

Using plants to repel the bugs in your home is not only safer than using chemical sprays, but it also helps make your house smell and look better. The following are the plants that you can try.

1. Catnip

10 Indoor Plants That Repel Bugs
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If you have pet cats, this will be like hitting two birds with one stone. Catnip works great at keeping bugs, especially mosquitoes, out of your house. The essential oil in catnip, nepetalactone, that gives the catnip plant its distinct smell, works ten times better than most commercial mosquito repellents.

Catnip is also a great cockroach deterrent. Grow some catnip in a pot, and when it is big enough, trim some sprigs and sprinkle it around your home. You can also make catnip spray by simmering some sprigs in water and pouring it into a spray bottle.

2. Lavender

10 Indoor Plants That Repel Bugs
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You can also plant lavender around your house. It will make your garden smell heavenly while keeping away flies, beetles, and fleas. Like catnip, lavender oil can be used in a spray. If you have a pollen allergy, it might be best to plant the lavender bush outside. Place lavender near your doorways to deter flying insects from entering.

3. Venus Flytrap

10 Indoor Plants That Repel Bugs
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This plant is the most literally named when it comes to pest control because it will trap the insect and kill it. They are effective against gnats and flies because those are the insects that will unknowingly land on the Venus Flytrap. Not only will this carnivorous plant help with your pest problem, it will be easy to keep the plant well-fed.

4. Rosemary

10 Indoor Plants That Repel Bugs
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Burning dried rosemary can drive away insects from your house. You can plant rosemary and once it gets big enough, get some sprigs and let them dry. Make sure to burn the dried rosemary near where the bugs hang around. Waving it around one room for a couple of seconds is not going to work. You can also use fresh sprigs of rosemary to deter moths and silverfish by  placing them in your drawers and dressers.

5. Marigolds

10 Indoor Plants That Repel Bugs
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Marigolds are beautiful flowers that ward off mosquitoes, so they are a win-win for your home. You can plant them in boxes and place those boxes in your window sills to keep the mosquitoes out. Marigolds contain pyrethrum, which is an ingredient of many insect repellents. You can also plant these flowers around your tomato plants to protect them from pests.Sage

6. Sage

10 Indoor Plants That Repel Bugs
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Sage is not the prettiest bush to have around your home, but its effectiveness against multiple insects make growing it worthwhile. You can burn dried sage because it is effective against mosquitoes. As long as you have a sage bush in your garden, just take a few cuttings and you have your own natural supply of mosquito and fly repellent. You can also place dried sage in a tiny mesh bag and place it in your dresser and drawers.

7. Basil

10 Indoor Plants That Repel Bugs
Image: istockphoto.com / Liudmila Chendekova

Basil is one of the most aromatic herbs for cooking; many people love the taste and smell. Fortunately, insects do not feel the same way. The smell of the oil in basil can deter household pests. For centuries, people have been using basil as a way to repel flies. Plant basil in a few pots and place those pots near your doorways.

8. Chives

10 Indoor Plants That Repel Bugs
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Chives can be grown anywhere by anyone, so make sure you have a few stalks present in your garden. Not only does it add tons of flavor to your cooking, it can also repel aphids, beetles, and flies.

9. Citronella

10 Indoor Plants That Repel Bugs
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This plant is so well known for repelling mosquitoes that it is called the mosquito plant. People even use citronella-scented candles at night when they are about to go to sleep to banish any mosquitoes from the room. When using citronella plant leaves, crush them so the fragrance is freed. You can even rub the crushed citronella leaves directly onto your skin so the mosquitoes steer clear of you. When placed around the house, the plant itself has enough of the scent lingering for the insects to stay away from it.

10. Chrysanthemums

10 Indoor Plants That Repel Bugs
Image: istockphoto.com / delobol

This flowering plant has the innate ability to purify the air and to remove toxins from it. This plant is also great at repelling roaches, bed bugs, ants, fleas, lice, ticks, and silverfish. It helps that they have beautiful flowers that light up any space in your house. You can protect your house from pests while beautifying it at the same time.


Most people think twice before using commercially available bug sprays and pesticides because of the chemicals that are present in them. But the pests present in most households can be stressful to deal with. A great compromise is to plant certain plants that have been used to deter bugs for centuries. These plants are catnip, lavender, Venus Flytrap, rosemary, marigold, sage, basil, chives, citronella, and chrysanthemums.

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