Outdoor PestsBugs

How To Keep Bugs Away in Florida

How To Keep Bugs Away In Florida

Florida is famous for its lovely climate, perfect for enjoying the outdoors throughout the year.

However, the humid subtropical climate also provides bugs with excellent living conditions. From ants and roaches to mosquitos and flies, various insects converge on Florida residents, making life difficult.

One of my friends recently moved to the Sunshine State. Although he loved the weather, he had a tough time dealing with bugs.

Here’s a list of tips I sent him to effectively keep bugs away in Florida.


Mosquitos, cockroaches, flies, ants, termites, fleas, millipedes, spiders, ticks, and many other insects thrive in Florida’s warm and humid climate.

Despite their strong presence, residents can keep bugs away in Florida by maintaining clean and dry surroundings, sealing entry points, keeping food sealed, reducing moisture, dressing smartly, eliminating breeding grounds, and using natural bug repellants such as vinegar, garlic, cayenne pepper, cinnamon, and various essential oils.

Let’s learn about the most common insects and how to keep bugs away in Florida.

Common Bugs in Florida

Common Bugs In Florida

Florida is home to many critters and flying insects, making life indoors and outdoors tricky.

Here are some of the most common household bugs in the Everglade State:

  • Ants
  • Bed Bugs
  • Cockroaches
  • Fleas
  • Flies
  • Millipedes
  • Mosquitos
  • Moths
  • Roaches
  • Spiders
  • Termites
  • Ticks

Eliminating bugs and preventing bug bites is essential in Florida since bugs cause allergies, irritations, and infections and spread dangerous diseases, including West Nile virus disease, St. Louis encephalitis, Eastern equine encephalitis, Lyme disease, ehrlichiosis, and spotted fever.

Ways To Keep Bugs Away in Florida

Ways To Keep Bugs Away In Florida

Although keeping bugs away can be challenging in Florida, it is easily achievable.

Most residents do their business without letting bugs get in the way, with preventive and protective measures seamlessly blending into their daily routines.

Here are some ways to prevent and repel bugs in Florida:

Avoid Attracting Bugs

Avoid Attracting Bugs

It’s essential to stop attracting bugs before taking measures to repel them.

Water and moisture, food sources, dirt, body odor, and certain scents invite insects that are abundant in Florida.

Maintaining clean and dry households, removing breeding grounds such as standing water, cleaning spilled food, and keeping food covered help keep insects away.

Seal Entry Points

Seal Entry Points

One of the easiest ways to maintain a bug-free home in Florida is to prevent them from getting in. Start by inspecting for easy entry points, including any cracks, gaps, and holes that need repairing.

The foundation usually provides easy entry to many insects, including ants, termites, and roaches. Using caulk or liquid cement, seal the foundation without missing the smallest cracks and gaps.

Repair gutters, roofs, and basements to avoid standing water and moisture. Seal any cracks and gaps in door and window frames, keeping in mind that insects can sneak through the tiniest openings.

Installing door sweeps is an excellent way to prevent bugs from crawling underneath doors. Fix mesh screens on windows to promote insulation and reduce humidity indoors without letting insects in.

Maintain a Bug-Repellant Perimeter

Maintain A Bug-Repellant Perimeter

Create and maintain a bug-repellant perimeter, making it difficult for insects to enter houses and other buildings.

Remove vegetation, especially bushes and tall grass extending 18 inches to two feet from the foundation.

Fill this perimeter with pine straws or cedar mulch that insects find repulsive.

It’s also wise to create a one-foot concrete border around buildings with another one-foot perimeter with some bug-repelling matter.

Avoid Bringing Bugs Indoors

Avoid Bringing Bugs Indoors

Bugs often gain easy entry into houses by hitchhiking on humans and pets.

Avoid bringing bugs indoors in dirty shoes, clothing, luggage, storage boxes, and used furniture.

Place clothing worn for gardening and outdoor adventures in sealed plastic bags before taking them indoors for cleaning.

Thoroughly inspect luggage, storage boxes, and used furniture for insects and their eggs before bringing them in.

Keep Food Sealed

Keep Food Sealed

Many insects invade homes in search of food. Therefore, preventing access to food is an excellent way to make households less inviting to them.

Keep food covered, only taking it out and uncovering them at mealtime.

Clean spills immediately by sweeping and vacuuming. Finish the dishes quickly or soak them in warm water with soap to buy some time.

Use sealed trash bins and empty them daily to stop attracting ants, roaches, flies, and other hungry bugs indoors.

Cover and Protect the Skin

Cover And Protect The Skin

The warm and sunny weather usually enables people to dress lightly. However, remember that exposed skin attracts mosquitos and other stinging insects.

Choose clothes wisely, covering as much skin as possible, especially spending time outdoors.

Unfortunately, nylon, polyester, and spandex materials aren’t thick enough to protect against mosquito bites.

Therefore, consider clothes made from thicker materials to avoid bug bites.

Don’t Smell Delicious

Don't Smell Delicious

Certain scents attract mosquitos and other stinging insects.

Certain perfumes, lotions, deodorants, and make-up makes people look like irresistible buffets to bugs.

Drinking beer also makes people produce bug-attracting odors.

Therefore, be careful with personal care products, especially ones with intense aromas.

Avoid wearing sweaty clothes and stay hydrated to keep bugs away.

Choose Colors Wisely

Choose Colors Wisely

Insects respond to colors differently. While some colors attract bugs by resembling food sources or shelter, some keep them away by being invisible, causing a lack of interest or scaring them.

Dark colors, especially green, attract most insects, including mosquitos. Lighter shades of blue deter bugs away by mimicking water and the sky.

Therefore, wearing lighter colors, especially blue, keeps insects away. Painting exteriors and outdoor furniture in light blue is also a wise option.

Treat Pets for Fleas and Ticks

Treat Pets For Fleas And Ticks

Fleas and ticks often find their way indoors by piggybacking on household pets such as cats and dogs.

As a result, routinely treat pets for fleas and ticks to avoid infestations.

Remember to regularly inspect and wash pet bedding in high heat to prevent fleas and ticks from laying eggs.

Keep pets from lounging on furniture and bedding, especially if they spend a lot of time outdoors.


Always follow veterinary instructions when treating pets for fleas and ticks. Carefully store flea and tick treatment away from the reach of children and pets.

Sprinkle Diatomaceous Earth

Sprinkle Diatomaceous Earth

This natural substance is an excellent way to eliminate insects.

Sprinkling Diatomaceous earth around houses, outdoor furniture, carpets, picnic areas, or anywhere frequented by bugs helps kill bugs from fatal dehydration.


Inhaling Diatomaceous earth can cause nasal irritations, cough, and shortness of breath. Touching it might also result in skin irritation and dryness. Therefore, wear a mask and gloves when handling it and keep it away from the reach of children and pets.

Use Cayenne Pepper and Cinnamon

Use Cayenne Pepper And Cinnamon

Most bugs have an excellent sense of smell, enabling them to identify food sources and threats quickly.

The smell of spices such as cayenne pepper and cinnamon irritates insects.

Therefore, use cayenne pepper and cinnamon to create natural bug-free zones.

Place Dryer Sheets

Place Dryer Sheets

Anti-static sheets, often used as fabric softeners, help keep bugs away.

Place dryer sheets to stop crawling insects from invading food and other bug-prone surfaces.

Create Boundaries With Chalk

Create Boundaries With Chalk

Draw with chalk to create perimeters, which many critters find impenetrable, especially ants.

Use Garlic

Use Garlic

Most insects find the smell of garlic overwhelming.

Place crushed garlic in kitchens, dining areas, or anywhere prone to insects to repel them.

Eating garlic also helps produce sweat that stinging insects find repulsive.

Spray or Wipe With Vinegar

Spray Or Wipe With Vinegar

Bugs find the pungent smell of vinegar overpowering, temporarily disabling them from identifying food and predator threats.

As a result, they tend to stay away from areas smelling of vinegar.

Combine equal parts of vinegar and water to create a natural bug-repellant.

Use Essential Oils

Use Essential Oils

Many essential oils have bug-repellant qualities. Here are some popular essential oils that work as natural insect repellants.

  • Peppermint Oil: Ants, Beetles, Fleas, Flies, Lice, Mosquitos, Moths, Spiders, and Ticks
  • Citronella Oil: Ants, Flies, Mosquitos, Spiders, and Ticks
  • Rosemary Oil: Flies, Mosquitos, Moths, and Roaches
  • Lemon and Lemon Balm Oil: Gnats, Mosquitos, Roaches, and Spiders
  • Lemongrass Oil: Fleas, Flies, Lice, Mosquitos, Roaches, Spiders, and Ticks
  • Lavender Oil: Ants, Bed Bugs, Fleas, Flies, Gnats, Mosquitos, Moths, Spiders, and Ticks
  • Geranium Oil: Ants, Fleas, Flies, Gnats, Mosquitos, Spiders, and Ticks
  • Tea Tree Oil: Ants, Bed Bugs, Bees, Dust Mites, Lice, Mosquitos, Spiders, and Ticks

Create homemade bug-repellant sprays by diluting 5-10 drops of essential oil with a cup of water. Transfer the mixture to a spray bottle to spray it on surfaces, or use the concoction with a cloth or cotton balls to use the scents to repel bugs.

Using diffusers and lighting incense, scented candles, or torches are also excellent at repelling insects with aromas.


Common side effects of essential oils include shallow breathing, drowsiness, nausea, and skin and eye irritation.

Dilute essential oils before use, avoid touching them, and stop use upon experiencing any discomfort or signs of side effects.

Ingestion of essential oils can cause vomiting, diarrhea, seizures, and coma, requiring careful storage away from children and pets to avoid accidents.

Grow Bug-Repellant Plants

Grow Bug-Repellant Plants (Ageratum)

Nature has provided many excellent solutions to control insects. Growing certain plants help keep bugs away from homes and yards in Florida.

Therefore, keeping potted plants on window sills, balconies, and patios and growing them in yards help keep bugs at bay.

Here are some excellent double-duty insect-repellant plants and herbs to grow in Florida:

  • Ageratum
  • Alliums
  • Basil
  • Bay Laurel
  • Bee Balm
  • Catmint
  • Catnip
  • Chives
  • Chrysanthemum
  • Citronella
  • Garlic
  • Lavender
  • Lemongrass
  • Marigolds
  • Mint
  • Pitcher Plants (Bug-Eating Plants)
  • Rosemary
  • Sage
  • Sweet Basil
  • Wormwood

Maintain Clean Exteriors and Yards

Maintain Clean Exteriors And Yards

Most bug infestations occur thanks to favorable conditions surrounding houses and yards. Therefore, maintaining clean and clear surroundings helps prevent bug problems in Florida.

Insects nest underneath decaying fallen leaves and debris. Remove debris from roofs, gutters, and the ground that provide insect shelter and nesting places. Regularly mow lawns and trim bushes to prevent overgrown vegetation that attracts bugs.

Various insects, including mosquitos and flies, breed in stagnant water. Cleaning gutters and removing stagnant water, including bird fountains, prevent households and gardens from becoming breeding grounds for insects.

Remember to cover or drain pools when not used.

Wildlife, such as raccoons, possums, skunks, and squirrels, often bring fleas and ticks into houses and yards, making their way indoors later.

Prevent wildlife from gardens and yards by removing food, water, and shelter to avoid flea and tick infestations.

Raise Larvae-Eating Fish

Raise Larvae-Eating Fish

Raising fish that feed on bugs and larvae in ponds and water features prevents mosquitos and flies from using them as breeding grounds.

Here’s a list of fish excellent for insect-free ponds in Florida:


Check the compatibility when raising multiple larvae-eating fish since some do not make friendly pond mates.

Use Outdoor Fire Pits

Use Outdoor Fire Pits

Smoke repels insects. Outdoor fire pits and tables send bugs packing while cozying up outdoor spaces such as patios, balconies, rooftops, pergolas, gazebos, and cabanas.

Smoke emitted by candles and torches also has a similar effect on insects.

Enhance the impact of smoke by using scented candles, incense, and torches or by adding a few drops of bug-repellant essential oils to the fire.

Install Outdoor Fans

Install Outdoor Fans

Placing fans on patios, balconies, rooftops, pergolas, gazebos, and cabanas shoo away flying insects while bringing in the cooler, fresh air.

The breeze fans produce also makes it difficult for bugs to identify scents, including body odor and perfumes.

Use Homemade Bug Traps

Use Homemade Bug Traps

Using homemade bug traps helps eliminate insects while providing a temporary respite from bug bites.

Here are some simple DIY bug traps for Florida households:

Soap Bowls

Soap Bowls

Put some scented liquid soap into a bowl.

The scent attracts flies that will die after getting stuck in the soapy liquid.

Yeast and Sugar Trap

Yeast And Sugar Trap

Cut a plastic bottle and add sugar, water, and yeast to the bottom half.

Invert the top half and place it on top of the bottof, creating a funnel.

The sugar water and yeast produce carbon dioxide, luring in mosquitos and trapping them inside the gadget.

Wine Bottle

Wine Bottle

Add an inch of wine to a bottle. Place a paper cone with an open tip on the bottle’s top to funnel bugs inside the bottle.

Flies will soon become trapped in the bottle after enjoying the wine.

Install Bug Zappers

Install Bug Zappers

Bug zappers eliminate bugs that invade outdoor living areas, although they don’t repel them.

Modern bug zappers are in many attractive designs, nicely blending with stylish outdoor spaces.

Change Lighting

Change Lighting

Bright white light attracts many bugs, including mosquitos, flies, moths, wasps, bees, ants, bed bugs, and planthoppers.

Replacing cool white with warm white lights or dimming the lighting prevents attracting bugs into homes.

Divert Insects Elsewhere

Divert Insects Elsewhere

Smartly coexisting with insects by diverting their attention elsewhere is an excellent tactic when spending time outdoors in Florida.

Leaving some sugar water or a plate of food scraps a short distance away from outdoor living areas during picnics and barbeques helps divert bugs away.

Keeping the foods and drinks covered makes such lures more effective.

Trash cans and compost bins often attract insects. Keeping such bug attractions as far away as possible lures insects away from houses and outdoor entertainment areas.

Get the Help of a Reputed Pest Exterminator

Get The Help Of A Reputed Pest Exterminator

Bugs thrive in the friendly climate in Florida. As a result, keeping insects away might require professional help.

Many pest control companies provide excellent year-round pest control solutions at affordable prices, preventing nuisance, expensive property damage, and the spreading of diseases.

Therefore, consider hiring a professional to treat houses and yards against common bugs.


Despite struggling to cope with all kinds of bugs in Florida, my friend managed to use my comprehensive list to keep insects away in Florida.

He employed various preventive and protective measures, including stopping attracting bugs into his house and yard, keeping food sealed, reducing moisture in his household, using multiple bug repellants such as vinegar, garlic, peppers, cinnamon, and essential oils, and eliminating breeding spots.

Frequently Asked Questions

Are Bugs a Big Problem in Florida?

The humid subtropical climate in Florida helps bugs thrive.

Insects such as ants, cockroaches, fleas, flies, millipedes, mosquitos, spiders, ticks, and termites often move indoors, causing a nuisance, infesting houses, and spreading diseases.

How Can We Stop Florida Bugs?

The best ways to keep bugs away in Florida include the following:

  • Maintaining clean and dry households, gardens, and yards
  • Removing food and water and reducing moisture
  • Sealing entry points and maintaining perimeters around houses
  • Dressing wisely in light-colored clothing and avoiding smelling attractive to bugs
  • Treating pets for ticks and fleas and maintaining clean pet bedding
  • Using natural bug-repellants, including vinegar, garlic, cayenne pepper, cinnamon, Diatomaceous earth, and essential oils
  • Growing bug-repellant plants and introducing bug and larvae-eating fish to ponds and water features
  • Installing outdoor fire pits, fans, warm-white lights, and bug zappers
  • Using DIY bug traps and using lures to divert insects away
  • Using year-round professional pest control services

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *