The Fragrant Herb You Can Use To Keep Cockroaches Out Of The House

Spotting a cockroach in your home can be incredibly frustrating, but given how harmless they actually are, going all out with chemical insecticides isn't necessary — nor is it the best way to go about handling them. It's just as well, then, that there's a natural herb alternative. And, as it happens, your cat will love you for it. Yup: The best way to go get rid of roaches is with catnip.

There are a ton of benefits to having catnip in your home, either in your garden or as a pot plant — and we're not just speaking for your cats, here. In addition to the effects it's known for, the catnip herb attracts both bees and butterflies, while the nepetalactone in the plant turns off most other insects ... and that's where its use as a cockroach repellent comes in. Mosquitoes, for one, aren't major fans of the scent the herb gives off, nor are flies or aphids. However, when it comes to using the plant to ward off roaches, this goes beyond bugs not liking the herb.

As with cats, catnip has the potential to make roaches space out. That, in turn, makes removing the bugs from your home an easier task. The best part? You'll be able to do so without needing to actually harm them.

Catnip slows cockroaches down

Whether you choose to plant catnip in your garden or keep it in pots around your home, this herb works wonders at removing cockroaches without resorting to chemicals. Simply pop the plant or its leaves in a spot you've noticed roaches in the past. The aroma is generally enough to ward off the critters, but keep an eye out nonetheless: If any do show up, they'll be significantly slower than usual, thanks to the disorientation caused by the herb. From there, all you need to do is scoop them up (the good 'ole container and piece of paper trick works a treat) and take them outside.

Catnip shouldn't do any harm to roaches, other than slow them down. However, that also depends on how much catnip you have in the environment — so if an ethical removal is what you're after, resist the urge to go overboard. In fact, if you aren't seeing too many roaches yet and you're open to starting with a more conservative approach, consider putting dried catnip into bags and placing them around the house, instead.

Starting small is also beneficial for cat parents. As noted by UrgentVet, though not deadly, too much catnip can cause gastrointestinal issues in your kitty, as well as some psychological side effects, like anxiety. Keep an eye on your catnip plants, or keep the sprinkled variety relatively minimal. You'll be removing roaches in a more humane way, without putting your pet at risk for side effects.