With spring officially here, you’re probably looking forward to warm days spent in the great outdoors. Of all the kitchen trends for spring and summer, an outdoor kitchen or patio is probably pretty high on the popularity list. Many homeowners consider the backyard an extension of the home — the perfect place to create an additional living and dining space. And while relaxing in the yard and enjoying a meal al fresco sounds delightful, mosquito bites are anything but. Keep your patio free of pesky insects by potting these culinary herbs that naturally repel mosquitos.
This plant is a powerful insect repellent, and has a lovely lemon scent. Since it is an invasive species, it does well when contained to a large pot on the patio. For culinary purposes, lemon balm has a delicate lemon flavor. You can use it to sweeten iced tea and homemade jam, or add this herb to salads and marinades.
Rosemary thrives in containers, and has a woodsy scent that keeps mosquitos and other insects away. Rosemary can be grown in containers on the patio, and can be pruned to add visual interest. As an added bonus, this herb is a great addition to homemade bread. It can also be used for seasoning meats on the grill.
This fragrant herb is quite popular with homeowners for several reasons. Lavender has a pleasant aroma and pretty purple flowers that can add a touch of color to the patio. Best of all, bugs despise its scent. Opt for a culinary variety for your patio pots, and use a dash of lavender to infuse simple syrup for sweetening lemonade and tea. You can also grind Lavender into sugar or butter for baking, or to flavor homemade vanilla ice cream.
Basil is a handy herb to have in your patio garden, and not just for culinary use. Not only does it repel mosquitos, but it also wards off houseflies too. For the best results, plant basil in large containers by your patio door. Basil can be used to top salads or pizzas on the grill, or use it in a homemade marinara with fresh garden tomatoes.
This herb has a heavenly scent that homeowners love — and mosquitos hate. It is best to contain Peppermint in pots, since it can grow aggressively in a garden. Use the aromatic leaves to flavor iced tea and mojitos — perfect for sipping while relaxing in the backyard on a warm, sunny day.
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