Flowers That Keep Bugs Away

Whether they're swarming your outdoor picnic or they've snuck into your home, bugs can be a nuisance. They're often attracted to the scents from your meals or even some decorative bouquets. If you occasionally get flies or want to ward off mosquitos from your next outdoor gathering, consider decorating with certain plants. In fact, these flowers repel bugs, making them both functional and beautiful: 

Known for their large bunches of colorful petals, chrysanthemums do more than brighten your home; they also repel a variety of insects, including roaches, fleas and ants. In fact, chrysanthemums contain a compound called pyrethrum that is poisonous to many bugs. For this reason, these flowers are often used as an ingredient in commercial insecticides.

Pyrethrums are also toxic to pets, so if you have animals, you may want to avoid chrysanthemums, or keep them out of reach of your furry friends. 

Another cheerful plant, marigolds pull double duty providing beautiful decoration and insect repellant. Like chrysanthemums, marigolds contain pyrethrums and keep away a variety of bugs. If you want to protect your outdoor living spaces from pesky mosquitoes, plant marigolds around the border of your property or surrounding areas where you eat and relax. The pyrethrums will create an invisible wall bugs won't be inclined to cross.

Of course, you can also choose bouquets that contain marigolds for inside your home. Keep the flowers away from your pets.

Petunias come in a variety of bright colors and prefer plenty of sunlight. They also repel beetles, aphids and squash bugs. What's more, petunias are non-toxic to both cats and dogs, according to the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals. This means both you and your furry friends can enjoy a bug-free home and garden.

Petunias are ideal for planting next to vegetable gardens, as the bugs they keep away are most likely to ravage your produce.

Geraniums bloom in bunches and sport a variety of saturated colors, including purple, red, white and yellow. They're also known to repel mosquitoes, among other insects. Geraniums are perennial, so they'll keep bugs away year after year if you plant them outside. They bloom in summer and last until frost season begins. 

These flowers add color to bouquets, but they are toxic to both cats and dogs. 

Flowers are a beautiful way to keep bugs at bay. Try these plants when you want to dine outdoors. If you notice your pets are lethargic, or are vomiting, they may have ingested one of the blooms not safe for animals. Call your vet immediately in an emergency.