The Tasty Fruits That'll Keep Ladybugs Away

Many people have positive associations with ladybugs, often rooted in fond childhood memories. Perhaps a ladybug landed on them and they were told it brought good luck, or maybe they were captivated by watching them and counting their spots. However, encountering a ladybug in nature is quite different from discovering a colony of these insects in your home. Fortunately, there is a simple solution to prevent the latter scenario: citrus fruit.

In addition to serving as good luck symbols, some individuals associate ladybugs with departed relatives, seeing them as a little sign that their loved ones are still around. Even if the sight of a ladybug typically brightens your day, an infestation can lead to numerous issues for the human inhabitants of your house or apartment. If you want to avoid problems like foul odors and potential allergic reactions, you have options for repelling these insects. There is even a humane way to keep ladybugs away from your domicile – simply add some citrus around your house.

The problem with ladybugs in the home

If you discover a single ladybug in your home, it may seem like a pleasant novelty. However, the charm will quickly fade if you come across a colony of them buzzing around. Similar to mice and rats, ladybugs seek shelter in warm homes during the cold winter months and may choose to take up residence in your space.

Having bugs flying around your rooms is generally undesirable, and while ladybugs typically do not bite humans, there are occasional cases where they do. They "can bite with their mandibles and pinch with their legs," according to Healthline. Some individuals, particularly those with allergies, may develop welts from these bites.

Another reason to discourage ladybugs from entering your home is that when they feel threatened, they release a repugnant-smelling yellow liquid. This defensive mechanism is similar to how skunks spray when threatened. This substance can stain curtains, rugs, and walls, and it can be challenging to remove.

Why citrus works to naturally repel ladybugs

The best way to prevent a ladybug infestation is to be proactive and keep them from entering your home. Fortunately, there is a simple and effective method to repel ladybugs. Just grate up the peel of citrus fruit, such as an orange or lemon, as they dislike the aroma of citrus. Sprinkle the zest around the doors and windows of your domicile, or place it in small dishes. Alternatively, you can use citronella candles, citrus oil, or spray to achieve the same effect. Fall is the ideal time to repel ladybugs, as they are looking for places to settle for the winter. Additionally, check for cracks or holes in screens and windows that may allow insects to enter, and seal them up.

When it comes to your outdoor spaces, the situation is different. In fact, you may want to attract ladybugs to your garden, as they can help control pests that harm your plants, such as aphids and mites. Aphids are particularly destructive, as they feed on plants and spread viruses. A single adult ladybug can consume dozens of aphids in a day, making them a valuable asset.