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Does Citronella Repel Spiders?

There is mild evidence that citronella essential oil can repel some species of spiders. Citronella essential oil has been shown to produce positive results when used as an insect repellent.

Some species of spiders are repelled by many essential oils, including citronella oil. This ability of this essential oil can be attributed to its strong odor which causes humans and other mammals to avoid it, as well as spiders.

does citronella repel spiders

However, the evidence is currently quite weak and it appears the repellent factor is not always effective, depending on the spider species and the mode of application.

Many people who use citronella as a spider repellent mix it with other oils or water to create a scent that spiders dislike. In fact, you can even buy ‘natural’ repellents that contain citronella.

Overall, given the mild evidence of citronella’s efficacy on spiders, we find that it is usually best to commission an eco-friendly pest control professional to deal with serious spider issues.

The below information is for general information purposes only. Make sure you buy an approved product and follow the instructions on the label.

What is Citronella?

Citronella is the name of the shrub that is commonly known for its odor. It is used in many traditional medicine practices all over the world. Besides being used as an antiseptic, it also has traditionally been used in repelling mosquitoes and preventing them from getting into our homes.

The citronella essential oil is extracted from the leaves of the citronella plant, which is found in Asia, North America, and Australia. It can also be found in India, China, and the Philippines. Citronella leaves are generally gathered during the wet season. They are used fresh, dried, or as a tincture.

Using citronella as a spider repellent is one of the most natural ways to keep spiders away. By mixing the essential oil with water, people can create a spray that is often used to keep spiders out of your home. 

Citronella, however, has to be reapplied several times during the day to keep repelling the spiders effectively enough. It will cease to be effective after 6-8 hours.

To get the most out of the citronella essential oil, most people mix it with other essential oils which are known to be good for repelling spiders, including geranium essential oil and eucalyptus essential oil.

Does Citronella Repel Spiders?

There is moderate to mixed evidence that citronella may repel some spiders. However, evidence of where, how, and when it is effective is minimal.

Spiders are said to be repelled by many essential oils, including citronella oil. This ability of this essential oil can be attributed to its strong odor which causes humans and other mammals to avoid it, as well as spiders.

Besides citronella’s strong odor, its ability to repel spiders may also due to its other components. Citronella essential oil is a mixture of several different compounds that have strong scents. Although they do not contain any insecticidal components, their strong odors may make spiders avoid them. 

In the case of spider repellents, citronella oil is often applied to surfaces or sprayed around a location to keep spiders from entering a building.

However, citronella is not known to be very effective for killing spiders. Once a spider is in your home, pest control agents may be required to remove the spider.

How People Use Citronella to Repel Spiders

If you wish to use citronella as a spider repellent, consider getting a pre-made solution from the store and follow the instructions on the label carefully.

To use citronella to repel spiders, most people mix it with water in a spray bottle. People are also known to mix it with other essential oils to create an odor that may irritate spiders.

Other methods involve leaving a scent of citronella in the home, placing a few drops of the essential oil onto a candle, or adding it to a cleaning product.

Many ‘natural’ anthropod repellents found on shelves will also involve a mix of citronella with other essential oils. This supposedly creates a stronger mixture that is more able to deter spiders better.

Some of the most common essential oils mixed with citronella are geranium essential oil and eucalyptus essential oil. Both of these oils are believed to repel spiders at a similar rate to citronella.

One of the benefits of using other essential oils to mix with citronella is the pleasant smell for humans. Many people also believe that it is better than using chemicals and other synthetic oils that people might end up using.

Another method is to mix citronella with water. The mixture may be effective for up to eight hours on some spiders.

Is Citronella a Good Spider Repellent?

Citronella is a commonly used spider repellent for people seeking an eco-friendly solution. However, there are many other more powerful solutions available.

There are many repelling agents available when it comes to buying repellent for spiders. You can also use other natural solutions. Note that citronella will not stop an infestation that has already occurred, so you’ll need to look for another solution if that’s the case. We would personally contact an eco-friendly pest control professional.

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Conclusion

Citronella has long been used as a natural pesticide and an insect repellent. It is one of a range of essential oils for bugs, mosquitoes, and even rodents that people use as an eco-friendly alternative. Citronella has moderate to mixed results in repelling spiders, cockroaches, and ants.

Generally, we do not recommend home remedies. If using citronella as a spider repellent, use an approved store-bought product and follow the instructions on the label carefully. For infestations, consult your local eco-friendly pest control professional.