You can purchase an herbal bug spray called Buzz Away in your local health food store. A little goes a long way, and it’s quite effective. The animals don’t really like it and try to get away from it when you spray it on their fur or on their herbal flea collars, but during tick season, it’s worth it. They don’t like the chemical flea and tick sprays either! I think all these sprays intercede with their sense of smell, but it sure does seem to work well in keeping the mosquitoes and ticks off. I spray some on my pant legs before I walk through the forest or to go berry picking.

If you want to make your own though (or use it as a very inexpensive room deodorizer) here’s an easy do-it-yourself homemade bug spray recipe for you:

Organic Bug Spray

2 ½ teaspoons total of any combination of the following essential oils (I carry the Starwest Botanical brand which is high-quality and reasonable priced):

  • Sweet Basil
  • Juniper
  • Palmarosa
  • Citronella
  • Rosemary
  • Rose Geranium
  • Myrrh  
  • Cedar wood
  • Pine

Please note that none of these oils should be applied to the skin neat (that means undiluted in the essential oil world). They are all skin irritants, so dilute your 2 ½ teaspoons with 1/2 cup 190 proof grain alcohol (they call it Everclear® in Montana) and ½ cup distilled water.

Note: I’ve also used about 20 drops of essential oil in a 4 ounce spritz bottle and, instead of alcohol; I’ve filled the bottle up with distilled water. It seems to work just fine. Shake well before using though as it is an oil and water blend.

Dr. Denice Moffat is a practicing naturopath, medical intuitive, and veterinarian working on the family unit (which includes humans and animals) through her phone consultation practice established in 1993. She has a content-rich website at www.NaturalHealthTechniques.com and free monthly newsletter.

Helpful Links and References for Bug Spray you can make at home: