Lemon Balm Lavender Bugs Off Spray

I seem to always get bitten in the garden. The Plantain Anti-Itch Balm seems to be working on those. Hubby even reported he used it on his tick bites and it has helped heal them.

Well, in a perfect world, I’d like not to get bitten in the first place so I wouldn’t need the balm. When I go out to work in the garden or even harvest the blueberries when they come in season, I usually spray myself with the regular bug sprays but I am concerned about what I’m putting on my skin.

I recently attended a seminar with Pam Jones of Nature’s Glory of Hazelton, Indiana. She had several recipes for “bug busters” so I just had to make one of them. I found out later they are from “The Creative Herbal Home” by Susan Belsinger and Tina Marie Wilcox, a book I’m currently reading.

This is really easy and made with stuff you probably have around the house. So let’s get started!

Ingredients for Bug Off Spray
Ingredients for Lemon Balm Lavender Bugs Off Spray

I harvested a bowl of lemon balm which I crushed and stuffed into my quart jar. I added some of my Grosso lavender from last year’s harvest. Then they were covered with apple cider vinegar.

Shake or stir every day for 7 days. Then strain out the herbs. I used a knee-hi stocking. My old supply of them from dress up days sure come in handy.

Straining herbs
Straining herbs

Now pour this strained liquid into a spray bottle.

Pouring into spray bottle
Pouring into spray bottle

And there you have your Lemon Balm Lavender Bugs Off Spray.

Bugs Off Spray
Lemon Balm Lavender Bugs Off Spray
Lemon Balm Lavender Bugs Off Spray [print_link]

lemon balm – enough to fill up a quart jar

lavender – cup or so

apple cider vinegar – enough to cover all of the herbs

Crush with fingers the fresh lemon balm and stuff into quart jar. Add lavender. Cover with apple cider vinegar. Shake or stir every day for 7 days. Strain and pour into a spray bottle. Store in cool, dark place. Should be good for the season.

Some substitutions: catnip, lemon grass, eucalyptus, lemon eucalyptus, lemon thyme, mountain mint, and jewelweed.

But now to test it. This was pretty scary. What if it doesn’t work? I will be all eaten up again! But I had faith and for the past two days I sprayed my clothing and my exposed arms. I even had Hubby spray the back of my shirt.

The first day I went down to the slope garden to work. Due to all of the rain we’ve had, this is a place for potential bug bites more than some of the other garden beds I work in. I noticed that a mosquito thought about landing on my arm but then left. I had another land on my shirt and then quickly jump off. After that I was alone in the garden. Yesterday I worked in a bed out front and no problems.

I can’t guarantee it will work for you, but it looks like it does for me so far. It does need to be reapplied often so I sprayed myself again after an hour of garden work. For me that’s a good thing since I really have a hard time taking a break. Now I’ll have to take time out.

If you try this, I’d love to hear your results. Or you have a homemade recipe for keeping the bugs off, I’d love to hear it.

Check out other interesting frugal days, sustainable ways blog hop for other great ideas.