Sustainable Living

Five Herbs That Will Ward Off Flies

Top Five Herbs to Get Rid of Flies

We all hate pests, especially nasty houseflies that manage to get in our homes during the summer months. Many people don’t realize that there are natural alternatives to warding off flies and other pests.

In fact, you don’t have to use chemicals in order to achieve noticeable results. Many herbal remedies are just as effective, if not more so, than the chemical bug sprays you’d find in the stores. The following herbs will help you ward off flies, and in some instances, other forms of household pests.


Basil is easy to grow, an essential for cooking, and smells divine. So why do flies hate it?

Basil herb Although basil smells wonderful to humans, the strong odor is overwhelming to houseflies. In fact, flies are completely repelled by basil.

A natural trick to fending off houseflies is to simply plant basil next to your external doorways.

You can also plant basil in a small pot to keep on your windowsill, if flies happen to be getting in through your windows. On summer nights when you decide to eat outside, keep a couple pots of fresh basil on your picnic table – not only will it scare the flies away, but you’ll have easy access in order to season the food on the grill!

Bay Leaves

Another herb that flies seem to hate is bay leaves, again due to the strong odor. Planting bay leaves near your external doorways will not only repel flies, but weevils and earwigs as well.


Lavender might be a relaxing herb for us humans, but flies can’t stand the stuff. Hanging some dried lavender around your home not only will give your home a soothing, calm, decorative appeal, but will also keep those buzzing little pests away.



Tansy (Photo credit: randihausken)

In ancient times, tansy was considered a strewing herb, believed to have cleansing properties.

Although it’s not as well known today, it is a good plant to incorporate into your landscape design, as it closely resembles marigolds. Not only is it easy on the eyes, but it also is known for repelling flies, ants, fleas, moths, and even mice.

Perhaps tansy does have cleansing properties, after all!


Pennyroyal is a member of the mint family known for its pest repelling properties. When planted around the foundation of your home, pennyroyal can fend of flies, mosquitoes, fleas, mice, and ants.

While it is a great way to ward off pests, you should beware of consuming this herb – it’s very toxic, even when consumed in small amounts.

These herbal remedies have been found to be effective; however, as with any remedy, you should use with caution. If you, a family member, or a close friend who spends a lot of time at your house has an allergy to any of these herbs, you’ll probably want to avoid them.

Performing a little research and implementing some common sense will have you well on your way to controlling the fly population at your house this summer – the natural way.

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