Is it just me or are the mosquitoes particularly rampant this year? I was outside today, weeding the garden from 4:30 to 5:00, and was well awash in Off, but it was no deterrent to the little demons. I came out of the garden with a bucketful of weeds and half my body covered in bites. According to my partner, they have “mosquitocation,” and tell each other when and where to find fresh blood. They have also, it seems, drifted down lower on the anatomy. Despite the fact I was leaning down, with my arms well within their reach, I don’t have a spot on my upper body. Maybe they are getting smarter and sense that arms are attached to hands, which with the power of the third sister Fate can swat the life out of you.
The only thing cut short was my gardening today. I fled to the front yard to gather up some plantain to treat myself as quick as I could. As I was plucking the plantain leaves, I saw my next-door neighbor who mentioned his mosquitoes are so bad, he won’t even go out back. They must be aware of this, for they’ve migrated to my side.
QUESTION: how’s the mosquito population in your ecosystem this year? Have you had any luck with products or approaches to keep them at bay? I’m not crazy about using products that smell like they don’t belong on human skin. Can anyone recommend some good natural products or, better yet, something that might be already available in the garden? Also share any effective treatments once you’ve already been affected. I’ve found plantain leaves to work well but if you have a bunch of bites like I do today, it’s hard to get them covered quickly, especially since the treatment is most effective within the first few minutes of getting a bite. (I typically just crinkle them up, and rub the juice on the bites).
So, any suggestions to combat this year’s most pesky pest? Go ahead, gimme the dirt!
What I wanted to get:
What I did get: