We live in an area surrounded by conservation land, and deer, bats, raccoons and many other creatures are regular visitors to our backyard. So are ticks and mosquitoes. A few summers ago my kids had ticks on their clothes or body almost every time they came in from the outside, even though we changed and washed their clothes immediately. We then got guinea hens who did a good job to reduce the tick population. For a variety of reason we don’t have much guinea hens anymore.
Having experienced in abundance the power of essential oils, I went on a search to find which ones are most disliked by certain insects.
There seems to be overwhelming evidence that ticks hate Rose Geranium, so I added that to my mosquito repellent, and this particular mixture has been very effective for us. Here is the recipe:
I take a 4 oz. glass spritzer bottle (pretty cheaply from this website: http://www.abundanthealth4u.com), and fill it halfway with witch hazel, and half with either distilled water or V-6 vegetable oil. Sometimes when in a hurry I just use distilled water.
2 oz. witch hazel
2 oz. distilled water or V-6 Vegetable oil
25 drops of Purification Purification Essential oil blend
10 drops of Geranium Essential oil
3 drops Peppermint (against biting ants and wasps/bees)
2 drops Clove (against fleas, flies etc.)
If you are like me and go through a lot of bottles of Essential oils, the same website above also sells just the spray tops for a few cents, and they fit perfectly on a used 15 ml. bottle of essential oils, a perfect size to carry along in your purse.
My boys love the scent, and many of our friends that have used my natural bug repellent have commented on the ‘good smell’.
The Purification oil blend contains Citronella, Lemongrass, Rosemary, Melaleuca, Lavandin and Myrtle, many oils which are known to repel insects.
In the ‘Reference Guide for Essential oil it says that Geranium helps to ease stress, balance the emotions, lift the spirit, and foster peace, well-being, and hope.
Purification and Geranium are also great for the skin.
It is said that ticks are attracted to stress hormones as well, so it sure does not hurt if the scent of your bug repellent relaxes you and makes you feel more calm and joyful.
Me and many other people have been using this recipe for the second hear now and I have heard only positive feedback . The only bug it did not seem to work as well against was blackflies. Better than others but not completely. After some more research it seems that greater concentrations of peppermint and possibly the addition of cedarwood and lavender could help with blackflies.
Of course to be on the safe side you should still do regular tick checks and wear light and protective clothing if possible.
Check my ‘ordering’ page if you like to purchase the essential oils or the ‘events’ page if would like to come to one of my workshops and make your own.
If you think you might not use an entire bottle of for example Geranium (which is not the cheapest) it might be worthwhile to split a bottle with a friend. One bottle of each of these oils will last you all season long, and you might still have some left over for next year (genuine essential oils without any additives like Young Living’s do not go bad).
Wishing everyone a healthy, non-toxic bug and tick-free summer/fall.