I Live in the Caribbean and Here Are 5 Mosquito Solutions That Locals Swear By

published Apr 28, 2021
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I live on a small, rustic (and beautiful) island in the Caribbean — as in 50 square miles and 8,500 people (give or take), and no shopping centers, chain stores, or even traffic lights. One thing we certainly don’t lack? Mosquitoes! While most of the country is about to enter mosquito season, for me, these winged bloodsuckers are a 12-months-a-year dilemma. And as you might recall, I hate bugs, so you can bet I’ve tested all sorts of solutions to keep flying menaces at bay. I know my neighbors have, too, so I polled this close-knit community of islanders for their tried-and-true mosquito solutions. The responses ran the gamut from natural essential oils to modern electric contraptions. To help you take advantage of their expert advice, I rounded up the most popular suggestions below. Here’s to a bite-free summer!

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"A mosquito racket and a bottle of wine should be a standard housewarming gift for anyone moving here," commented one friend, and I couldn't agree more. These handheld electric zappers are perfect for keeping your immediate area free of flying pests. This model from Intelabe is my personal favorite. The 4,000-volt racket is super powerful; has a built-in, rechargeable battery that plugs into any USB port; and the handle is also a removable LED flashlight. With the push of a button, you can say goodbye to mosquitos and work on your backhand at the same time.

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Sure, using a high-powered poison can annihilate bugs, but at what cost? For an effective alternative that's not harmful to the environment, pets, or people, try Garlic Barrier, an extremely potent liquid garlic extract. Several of my neighbors suggested this solution, which you mix with water and spray on the leaves of your plants or along the perimeter of your outdoor space. Don't worry, the garlicky smell won't last for long — but the bug-banishing power will.

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An easy and healthy alternative to eradicate mosquitos from your space, lemongrass is known for its ability to ward off these pesky insects. In fact, a study from the National Institute of Health suggests that this edible household staple is roughly 95 percent effective against several mosquito species. You can pick up a few plants at your local garden store, or — even better — order them from Amazon and they'll be delivered right to your door.

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I first tried Katchy to help solve a fruit fly problem, but I soon discovered that it's plenty effective against mosquitos, too. Powered via an electrical plug, this countertop device uses a UV light to attract bugs (it works best at night when the lights are out), then a fan pulls them down into a receptacle chamber where they stick to a replaceable glue pad. It's easy to operate, effective, and (best of all) doesn't make a mess when it's time to change the glue pad.

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It seems like no matter what ails or irks you, there's always an essential oil that can remedy that situation. When it comes to combating mosquitoes, eucalyptus and citronella are two of the most effective, both of which are primary ingredients in DoTerra's TerraShield. Specifically formulated to repel insects, the blend also includes ylang ylang flower, cedarwood, and catnip plant, among others. Dab some on your skin, or buy it in a spray form to apply to the perimeter of your outdoor space or around windows and doors.

This post originally appeared on Apartment Therapy. See it there: I Live in the Caribbean and These Are 5 Mosquito Solutions That Locals Swear By