Full Member
Posts: 15
Joined: Mon Aug 04, 2008 12:55 pm
Location: Northern IL, Almost WI

How to Prevent or Stop Mosquito Attacks?

Hi all. I live in Northern Illinois and this year we have had a LOT of water. There has been a good deal of flooding (not in my neighborhood), but we were told to expect the mosquito population to be up by 15%. I have always gotten 10X the bites anyone else seems to get and they itch horribly and swell terribly. I don't wear perfume when I garden and usually remember to spray myself with something... cutters, etc. when I go out. It doesn't seem to matter. Yesterday I came in welted almost from head to toe. What can I do? Is there something out there that I don't know about??? I have heard about Skin So Soft and most of the usual bug sprays, but nothing seems to help much. I keep the grass short, wear long pants, etc., but I get bit anway. P L E A S E H E L P ! ! :( :( :(

I would be forever grateful to anyone that has an answer....

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Super Green Thumb
Posts: 3604
Joined: Sun Jul 06, 2008 7:58 am
Location: Central Sand Hills South Carolina

I rarely have a problem, but use the very concentrated DEET when going kayaking or other activity where the mosquitoes may be a serious problem. However, I recently ran across the reprint of the article related to natural mosquito repellants. The gist of the article states that no plants repel mosquitoes by simply sitting in a pot or being planted in the garden. But they gave examples of two which when crushed against the skin do offer significant protection. Lemon thyme was the best natural mosquito repellant cited, 60% as effective as DEET. Here are a couple of brief quotes:

"The important fact to remember is that no plant - citrosa, lemon thyme or even citronella grass itself (a very hard to find 6- foot-tall tropical plant) will repel skeeters just sitting in a pot. Plants release significant amounts of their repellent oils only when their leaves are crushed, Dr. Tucker says. If you want to go that route, rubbing the crushed leaves on your skin is probably the best way ...."

"Crushed citrosa leaves, however, do offer some protection - they have 30 to 40 percent of the repellency of DEET. But crushed lemon thyme (Thymus X citriodorus) has 62 percent! So lemon thyme should work better than the much-ballyhooed citrosa plant."

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Site Admin
Posts: 9476
Joined: Sun Feb 08, 2004 12:59 pm
Location: Amherst, MA USDA Zone 5a

Do you have any habitats for dragonflies nearby? Generally bodies of water like ponds that have healthy vegetation are needed. Rivers with vegetation work, too. Here's some info about [url=]Illinois Dragonflies[/url].

Here's a great site with information about building a bat house to encourage bats in your area. The site is [url=]Bat Conservation International[/url].

My mother in law has an extremely healthy yard. At night there are thousands of different insects crawling and flying around, an extraordinary amount of diversity. There are also bats. In fact, one flew into the garage one night when I was staying there. Fortunately they can detect air flows and it swiftly swooped out the side door from which it had entered. Startling to say the least. Mosquitoes are not a big problem, although there was one evening when we were attacked by the pool. On another early evening my daughter was delighted by the sight of bats swooping around the pool area round and round above her feasting on mosquitoes.

The mosquito population in the area appeared well under control, noticeably better than in previous years when mosquitoes were biting day and night. The improvement is probably due to the conservation efforts in the area, including restoring the marshlands. I went kayaking and saw osprey hanging out in their osprey houses and lots of heron and fish poking out of the water, presumably catching a buggy meal.

Newly Registered
Posts: 9
Joined: Mon Oct 06, 2008 1:12 pm
Location: Pittsburgh, PA

Hi I live in PA and I am bug candy. It doesn't matter what it is it bites me. I have found a product called thermo cell. It is inexpensive and works like a charm. If you go to their website you can find them and see where to purchase. Our troops use them too. This works better than all those sprays which make you smell and sticky plus I still get bite with the sprays.

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Posts: 30538
Joined: Thu May 01, 2008 7:21 pm
Location: Zone 6, NJ (3/M)4/E ~ 10/M(11/B)

I have the same problem -- mosquitoes love me :roll:
Best defense for me so far has been this "bug jacket"
I got it from but I'm sure there are other sources. The matching "bug pants" shown on the package is sold separately -- I didn't realize that and didn't get it, but I wished I did when it was hot and I was wearing short pants. Most of the time, I don't wear the hood, but I use a citronella-based bug repellent oil that I simply mix in my wet hands and rub on my hair and openings (collar, hem) and on clothes.

I get immense and childish satisfaction from swatting dead the confused mosquitoes that crawl around on the mesh. :twisted:

Only downside I've found with this jacket is that despite the open mesh, it gets pretty hot inside :? There was an Australian website selling a similar mesh jacket made of white netting that might stay cooler....

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