10 Incredible Plants That Repel Stink Bugs Out of Your Home

Stink bugs are a common household pest that can be difficult to get rid of once they’ve made their way inside your home. While there are many chemical insecticides and traps available to control stink bugs, some people prefer natural remedies. One such remedy is using plants that repel stink bugs. Certain plants have natural oils and compounds that repel stink bugs and other insects. 

In this article, we will explore some of the most incredible plants that repel stink bugs and how to use them to help keep stink bugs out of your home. By incorporating these plants into your home and garden, you can take a natural and effective approach to stink bug control.

Let’s get started!

Type of Stink Bugs

Stink bugs are a type of insect that can be found in many areas of the world. They are known for their pungent odor, which is produced when they are disturbed or threatened.

plants that repel stink bugs
Type of Stink Bugs

There are several species of stink bugs, but some of the most common types of stink bugs found in America include:

  • Brown Marmorated Stink Bug. This is the most common type of stink bug found in North America. They are brown and shield-shaped, and they have a mottled appearance on their back.
  • Green Stink Bug. This species of stink bug is bright green and shield-shaped, with a distinctive triangle on its back. They are found in agricultural areas and gardens.
  • Southern Green Stink Bug. This stink bug is commonly found in the southern United States. They are green and shield-shaped, and they have a distinctive white band on their antennae.
  • Brown Stink Bug. This species of stink bug is brown and shield-shaped, with a smooth back. They are commonly found in gardens and fields.
  • Spined Soldier Bug. This species of stink bug is green and has a spiny appearance. They are beneficial insects and feed on other pests, but can still emit a strong odor when threatened.

Problem with Stink Bugs

Stink bugs can become a nuisance when they enter homes or buildings seeking shelter from colder temperatures in the fall and winter. They can enter through cracks and gaps around windows, doors, and other openings in the building’s exterior. Once inside, they can be difficult to control and can emit a strong, unpleasant odor if threatened or crushed.

plants that repel stink bugs
Problem with Stink Bugs

Invasive stink bugs can also cause damage to crops and gardens by feeding on plant leaves, stems, and fruit. Large stink bug infestations can significantly impact the yield and quality of crops, making them a major concern for farmers and gardeners.

In addition, stink bugs have few natural predators, which can lead to rapid population growth and spread. In a year, stink bugs breed four times. Stink bugs lay 20 to 30 eggs on the leaves of trees and other plants each time they procreate. Therefore, you should have effective stink bug control with plants to prevent them from entering your home or damaging your plants.

Why Shouldn’t You Kill Stink Bugs?

While stink bugs can be a nuisance, it’s generally not recommended to kill them. This is because stink bugs play a role in the ecosystem and have some beneficial qualities. Here are a few reasons why you may want to avoid killing stink bugs:

  • Stink bugs are not poisonous to humans. While stink bugs emit a strong odor when threatened, they are not poisonous to humans. The odor is a defense mechanism to ward off potential predators.
  • Killing stink bugs can attract more stink bugs. When stink bugs are threatened, they release a chemical that attracts other stink bugs. Moreover, these stinky creatures emit an odor when they are crushed or squashed as a protection mechanism. Additionally, a chemical in the unpleasant odor that stink bugs emit draws other stink bugs to them. Thus, if you kill one stink bug, it can attract more to the same area, which can lead to an even bigger stink bug infestation.
  • Stink bugs are difficult to control. Stink bugs can be difficult to control once they’ve entered your home or garden. Killing individual stink bugs may not be effective in controlling the overall population.

What Months Are Stink Bugs Most Active?

Stink bug activity is often highest from March through September. However, the stink bug season may last deep into the winter if temperatures increase enough. Seasonal pest organic control methods can help keep your house safe all year round.

It’s important to note that stink bugs can be active at any time of the year if the weather conditions are favorable. For example, if there is a warm spell in the winter, invasive stink bugs may become more active and may be more likely to enter homes and buildings.

Best Plants That Repel Stink Bugs

Stink bugs are one of the most annoying pests that can invade your home. Not only do they have a disgusting smell, but they can also cause damage to your plants and garden. Fortunately, there are some plants that have been proven to repel stink bugs and keep them away from your property. 

1. Garlic (Allium Sativum)

Allium sativum or well known as garlic, is one of the best plants to repel stink bugs because it has an odor that these bugs find unpleasant. Ironically, stink bugs dislike plants with extremely potent odors. Stink bugs shouldn’t be able to get too close to your home if you place a few garlic plants nearby. This approach is fairly effective and good for other things as well.

plants that repel stink bugs
Garlic (Allium Sativum)

Before planting garlic, you should purchase garlic cloves from your local garden center and plant them in an area where stink bugs may be present. Plant the cloves 4-6 inches deep and 12-15 inches apart during late September until November. Water the cloves deeply after planting and keep the soil consistently moist. Garlic will take about 10 weeks to reach maturity, so you may need to replant garlic cloves every few months to ensure continual protection from stink bugs.

2. Radishes (Raphanus Sativus)

Radish or raphanus sativus is a stink bug-resistant plant because its strong scent can often act as a stink bug deterrent. Radishes are uninteresting to stink bugs, and they may disregard nearby plants as well. So, radishes are a wonderful choice if you’re seeking to grow plants that will keep stink bugs out of your garden.

plants that repel stink bugs
Radishes (Raphanus Sativus)

To plant radish to repel stink bugs, start by planting a single row of radish plants in your garden during early spring or late summer. Space the plants out to ensure they have a good amount of room to grow. Then, water the pest control plants regularly to ensure they stay healthy and continue to emit their strong scent. You may also want to consider interplanting other plants around the radish, such as marigolds, to help keep the stink bugs away.

3. Catnip (Nepeta Cataria)

When it comes to frightening stink bugs away during spring, many have had luck with catnip or nepeta cataria. Stink bugs won’t like catnip planted on your land since it repels them. They will want to go because they can’t handle the catnip’s potent smell. In all likelihood, it will prevent stink bugs from entering your home.

plants that repel stink bugs
Catnip (Nepeta Cataria)

Start by choosing a sunny spot in your garden or yard and make sure the soil is well-drained. Plant catnip seeds or cuttings in the soil, keeping the pest control plants spaced out so they can grow and spread their pungent aroma. Water the pest-resistant plants regularly and provide them with plenty of light and nutrients. You can also purchase catnip-infused pest repellents to spray in areas where stink bugs are a problem.

4. Lavender (Lavandula Angustifolia)

Lavandula angustifolia is one of the best aromatic plants to repel stink bugs because of its strong, fragrant smell. The smell of this stink bug repelling-flower can mask the scent of other plants that attract stink bugs and act as a natural repellent. This stink bug-resistant plant can help you get rid of stink bugs while also enhancing the aesthetic appeal of your yard. 

plants that repel stink bugs
Lavender (Lavandula Angustifolia)

To plant this stink bug repelling-flower, choose a sunny location in your garden that has well-draining soil. Plant the lavender during April and May in a container or directly in the ground, making sure to space the plants at least 24 inches apart. Water the lavender regularly, but do not overwater. Prune the lavender regularly to promote new growth and to keep the plants looking neat and tidy.

5. Thyme (Thymus Vulgaris)

Thyme or thymus vulgaris is one of the best plants for repelling stink bugs because it contains a compound called thymol, which has a strong smell that stink bugs find unpleasant. It’s another type of spring plant that has a powerful scent, and that means that it makes stink bugs want to stay away. Planting thyme at specific points throughout your garden could be just the right thing to solve stink bug issues.

Thymus Vulgaris
Thyme (Thymus Vulgaris)

You should choose a spot that gets at least 8 hours of direct sunlight a day and that has well-drained soil while planting thyme. Dig a hole twice as wide as the pot and just as deep, then place the thyme in the hole and fill in the dirt around it. Water the thyme regularly and it should keep your garden free of stink bugs.

6. Chrysanthemum (Chrysanthemum Cinerariifolium)

Chrysanthemums or chrysanthemum cinerariifolium are known to be a natural stink bug repellent and are often used to repel stink bugs. The plant secretes chemicals that are toxic to bugs, especially stink bugs. We suggest you plant chrysanthemums in early spring for the best growth.

Chrysanthemum (Chrysanthemum Cinerariifolium)
Chrysanthemum (Chrysanthemum Cinerariifolium)

Chrysanthemums can be planted around the perimeter of a garden or house, or in containers that can be placed near doors and windows. To ensure the best results, water the Chrysanthemum plants regularly and prune them often to keep the pest-resistant plants healthy.

7. Marigold (Tagetes)

Stink bugs can be kept away from your property by planting tagetes. It’s a plant with a distinct aroma that the stink bugs won’t like. The smell of marigolds is believed to act as a stink bug deterrent. 

Marigold (Tagetes)
Marigold (Tagetes)

To plant marigolds to repel stink bugs, simply place them around your garden and yard. Plant them in spring for the best results. You can plant them in the ground, in containers, or in hanging baskets. Make sure to water them regularly and keep them in full sun.

8. Lemongrass (Cymbopogon Citratus)

Lemongrass or cymbopogon citratus, is an excellent natural repellent for stink bugs during spring due to its strong citrus scent. The strong smell of the lemongrass will keep the bugs away. 

Lemongrass (Cymbopogon Citratus)
Lemongrass (Cymbopogon Citratus)

To plant lemongrass, you can either get a few lemongrass plants or buy some lemongrass seeds. Plant the seeds in an area where the stink bugs are a problem. Make sure the soil is moist and well-drained. Place the lemongrass plants in a sunny area for best results. As the plants grow, the strong citrus scent will help to keep the bugs away.

9. Mint (Mentha)

Mentha is the best plant to repel stink bugs because of its strong scent. The smell of mint is overwhelming to the bug’s senses and makes them stay away. We recommend you plant mints during spring for the best growth.

Mint (Mentha)
Mint (Mentha)

You can create a border of mint around the perimeter of your garden or yard. Plant it in the ground or in pots and make sure to keep the plants well-watered. You can also provide some extra protection by spraying the mint plants with a mixture of water and peppermint oil. This will help to further repel the bugs.

10. Rosemary (Salvia Rosmarinus)

Rosemary or salvia rosmarinus is one of the best aromatic plants to repel stink bugs because it has a strong scent that is known to repel many pests. Its also makes a great companion plant for other vegetables and herbs in the garden, so you can plant it alongside other plants to help repel stink bugs.

Rosemary (Salvia Rosmarinus)
Rosemary (Salvia Rosmarinus)

To plant rosemary to repel stink bugs, you should pot the herb in a container, as they prefer to stay away from soil. Place the container in areas where stink bugs may be a problem, such as windowsills and doorways, and make sure to keep the soil moist. Rosemary will grow well during spring.

How Do You Treat Stink Bug Bites?

Stink bug bites or stings are an unpleasant but common occurrence for many people. Stink bugs, also known as shield bugs, are small insects that feed on a variety of crops and plants. They can be found in gardens and homes, and their bites or stings can cause skin irritation and itching. Fortunately, there are a few simple steps you can take for stink bug treatment, here they are:

  • Clean the affected area with soap and water. This will help to remove any remaining stink bug saliva and reduce the risk of infection.
  • Apply an anti-itch cream or calamine lotion to the affected area. This will help to treat stink bug burn. You can also apply lavender or cedar essential oil straight on the bite to reduce itching and swelling, then let the oil seep into the skin. 
  • Use a cold compress to treat stink bug burn. This can be done by applying a cloth or towel soaked in cold water to the area.
  • Take an over-the-counter antihistamine to reduce itching and swelling.
  • If the itch and swelling persists, seek medical attention. A doctor may prescribe a topical cream or steroid to reduce swelling and itching.

Final Thought

Stink bugs are a nuisance, but thankfully plants can help repel them. Planting certain flowers and fragrant herbs for stink bugs around the home and garden can act as a natural deterrent, helping to keep these insects away and eliminating the need for chemical treatments. Additionally, maintaining a clean and tidy garden can help to reduce stink bug populations, as they are attracted to rotting and decaying matter. With careful management and a few strategic plantings, we can all help to minimize the presence of these smelly pests in our homes and gardens.


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FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions)

Do stink bugs hate lavender?

Stink bugs likely do not have a strong reaction to lavender as they are not drawn to scents. While lavender is known to have an aroma that repels some insects, like mosquitoes, there is no evidence that it has the same effect on stink bugs. If you are looking for more plants that repel stink bugs, you can read the article above.

What kills stink bugs instantly in the garden?

Sticky traps are the most effective way to kill stink bugs in the garden. We suggest a basic “trap” for stink bugs consisting of hot water, dish soap, and white vinegar. This is because they trap the bugs and prevent them from escaping, and the bugs then die from dehydration. Or, you can look for plants that repel stink bugs to keep your home clean.

Why are there so many stink bugs in your garden?

Stink bugs are attracted to gardens because they provide a food source, warmth, and shelter. Stink bugs feed on plants and fruits, and they like to hide in the garden. Additionally, warmer climates are more conducive to increased stink bug populations. Discover plants that repel stink bugs in this article for a thriving garden.

What happens if a stink bug bites you?

Stink bugs are not known to bite humans, however, they do have the capability to do so if they feel threatened. If a stink bug bites, it would not likely cause any serious harm, though there may be some localized redness and minor itching. This is because some people have allergy symptoms to the substances that the stink insect releases. Runny nose and eczema, if you come into contact with crushed bugs, are also possible stink bug bite symptoms of this allergy.

Does rosemary repel stink bugs?

Yes, rosemary has a scent that will work to repel stink bugs. Rosemary is believed to repel stink bugs because of its strong scent. The essential oils in the herb produce a strong aroma that can be unpleasant to the bugs, making them less likely to stay in the area.

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