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7 Great Plants That Repel Japanese Beetles

7 Great Plants That Repel Japanese Beetles

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Japanese beetles are small insects, but you shouldn’t underestimate the danger that they pose to your garden. These insects will feed on your plants and cause a ton of damage if you let them stay in your yard unchecked.

These insects are known as pests that will feed on hundreds of different plant species. In the Midwestern and Eastern portions of the United States, they’ve become a huge problem.

They’re called Japanese beetles because that’s where they originate. They didn’t make their way over to America until sometime around 1912, and they have been problematic ever since.

Luckily, there are some steps that you can take to protect your yard from these pests. Read on to learn about plants that can repel Japanese beetles.

1 – Garlic

Garlic Is One Of The Best Plants To Help Deter Japanese Beetles

Garlic is one of the best plants to place in your garden when you’re trying to deter Japanese beetles from coming around. You’ll find that Japanese beetles dislike many plants that have strong odors, and garlic definitely fits the bill.

You should try planting as much garlic as you can in your garden areas to provide protection to your plants. If all goes well, then you should be able to keep Japanese beetles from wanting to come around at all.

As an added benefit, you’ll be able to harvest fresh garlic to use in your cooking. Since garlic is used in so many different tasty dishes, this is going to be an appealing option to many gardeners.

2 – Catnip

Catnip Is Very Potent And Can Help Deter Japanese Beetles

If you’re familiar with catnip, then you know that it’s very powerful and potent. Typically, people use catnip on cats because they love the substance.

Japanese beetles don’t feel the same way about catnip plants. They hate the smell and they’re going to want to stay far away from any catnip plants that you choose to place in your garden area.

The only potential downside to planting catnip in your yard is that it might attract stray cats. You might see more stray cats coming into your yard to try to chew on the leaves of your catnip plants, and that might mean that some of the other options on the list could be more appealing to you.

3 – Onions

Onions Will Help Deter Japanese Beetles In Your Garden

Weirdly enough, onion plants will help to keep Japanese beetles out of your garden as well. You can choose to plant onions as a deterrent and enjoy being able to harvest onions for personal use in your cooking.

Many people decide to plant both garlic and onions in their garden areas to act as beetle deterrents. It winds up working really well, and you’ll likely enjoy having access to onions.

You can just plant onion plants near other plants that you’re worried about. Japanese beetles won’t get near them if you have onion plants nearby since they don’t like those plants at all.

4 – Rue

Rue Is A Plant With A Strong Scent That Can Help Deter Japanese Beetles

Rue is a plant that has a strong scent that is capable of repelling many animals and pests from your garden. It can keep Japanese beetles at bay, but it’s also good at keeping cats and dogs from messing with your garden area.

In the past, people used to grow rue in herb gardens for medicinal purposes. This isn’t the case in modern days because there is no scientific evidence to support that rue is good for helping people with afflictions.

Some people like growing it in their gardens because the plants attract butterflies. If you’d like to see more butterflies in your garden area and fewer Japanese beetles, then planting rue plants will be a good idea.

5 – Marigolds

Marigolds Are A Good Plant To Help Deter Japanese Beetles

Marigolds can actually be a good thing to plant in your garden as well. These are pretty plants that have been known to help repel Japanese beetles from gardens.

They’re also great types of flowers for beginners to grow because of how easy they are to care for. They’ll make a great addition to your garden area because they won’t be hard to care for and they’ll add some charm to the area.

There are different kinds of marigold flowers that you can choose from as well. If you’d like to have some tall flowers in your garden, then consider growing some African marigolds.

6 – White Geraniums

White Geraniums Are A Good Plant To Help Deter Japanese Beetles

White geraniums will be another plant to consider when you’re trying to grow things that are pretty in your garden. This is a very nice plant that will deter Japanese beetles while also providing your garden area with even greater beauty.

You’ll love how they look and they’ll do a good job of keeping Japanese beetles away from other plants. If you prefer using plants that add aesthetic appeal to the garden than planting things that can be harvested as food, then consider planting white geraniums.

Taking care of geraniums is actually pretty easy, and that means that you won’t need to learn a lot to do well. Geranium care is very basic and most people with a little gardening experience won’t have trouble with them.

7 – Chives

Chives Can Help Deter Japanese Beetles In Your Garden

Finally, you could try to grow chives in your garden since they can help to control Japanese beetles as well. These are considered to be among the easiest types of herbs to grow.

It’s a plant that won’t take a lot of effort on your part. This means that you can place it in your garden at various points to act as a deterrent to Japanese beetles.

If you have kids, then you could help to teach them about growing herbs using chives. It’s something that’s very hard to mess up, and that makes it a good starter plant for the young ones.

Final Thoughts

You can take care of a Japanese beetle problem by approaching things with a cool head. There are many plants that you can place in your garden area that will help you to protect things.

If you can do a good job of planting these plants in your garden area, then you won’t have to worry nearly as much about Japanese beetles in the future. It should be easy to keep the Japanese beetles away from your other plants now.

Use this knowledge and decide which of these plants will work best in your garden. They’re all easy to plant for the most part and you’re going to have a good experience.


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Tuesday 18th of July 2023

I have onions planted in a large above ground planter in my garden. It is located next to similar above ground planters, one that has green bean plants and one with strawberry plants. Both of these are being attacked by japanese beetles. When items are suggested to be planted in a garden to repel these beetles, does that mean they need to be planted in the planter with the beans and/or strawberries. Concerned if that will affect flavor of veggies, etc.

I do have marigolds planted in a box that I put at one end of the above ground planter that has my tomato plants. I have not seen any leaves eaten by the beetles like I normally would this time of year. So that seems to work. And that is an 8 foot long above ground planter. I have sweet potato plants in another exact match above ground planter also with a box of marigolds there as well. No signs of beetles. But those are larger boxes and easier to plant the flowers there. Marigolds are fairly inexpensive in the spring to purchase and the pots can be used year after year.

Onions and garlic can serve a dual purpose since they can be eaten. But onions dont seem to be working for my green bean plants and strawberries.

I also have some ornamentals that are being affected by these beetles. First year here for that.We are spraying them but that is expensive.

I will try white geraniums next year. They are expensive here so will try to find seeds. Do hardy geraniums work the same as regular geraniums as a deterant? Hardy geraniums are perennials so less expensive.

Thank you.