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How To Keep Moths Away Outside

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Moths may seem like harmless creatures fluttering around your outdoor lights at night, but they can become a nuisance and cause significant damage to your garden, outdoor furniture, and even your home if they choose to move indoors. In this comprehensive guide, we’ll explore various methods on how to keep moths away from your outdoor spaces.


To keep moths away outside, use natural repellents like lavender, rosemary, thyme, and mint. Adjust your outdoor lighting to yellow or warm-colored lights, and turn off exterior lights when possible. You can also set up water traps, use citronella candles, encourage natural predators like birds and bats, and regularly clean your outdoor area. Commercial products like moth deterrent pouches and bug zappers can also be effective.

Understanding Moths

Before diving into moth prevention, it’s important to understand these creatures. Moths are insects closely related to butterflies and are usually more active at night. They are attracted to light, which explains their frequent nighttime appearances near your outdoor lights.

Natural Repellents

One of the safest and most eco-friendly methods to deter moths is using natural repellents. Planting moth-repelling herbs around your outdoor space can be a very effective deterrent. Moths dislike the smell of lavender, rosemary, thyme, and mint, and these plants can also add beauty and fragrance to your garden.

You can also create homemade sachets filled with these dried herbs or their essential oils. Place these sachets around your outdoor space or hang them near light sources to keep moths at bay.

Adjusting Outdoor Lighting

Moths are attracted to light sources, especially white or blue lights. By changing the color of your outdoor lights to yellow or warm-colored lights, you can make your outdoor space less appealing to moths.

Another lighting adjustment involves turning off exterior lights when possible or shading windows in lighted rooms at night to prevent attracting moths.

Other Effective Methods

There are other effective methods that can be used to keep moths away from your outdoor space. These include:

  • Setting up water traps: Place a shallow bowl of soapy water under outdoor lights. The reflection will attract moths, causing them to drown in the water.
  • Using citronella candles or torches: The scent of citronella is known to repel moths and other flying insects.
  • Encouraging natural predators: Birds and bats are natural predators of moths. Installing birdhouses and bat houses in your garden can help control the moth population.
  • Regular maintenance: Regularly clean your outdoor area to reduce hiding spots and breeding grounds for moths. Remove dead leaves and debris regularly.

Commercial Products

There are also commercial products available to keep moths away from your outdoor space. These include:

  • Stay Away Moths Deterrent Pest Control Scent Pouches: These pouches contain plant-based ingredients and emit a pleasant aroma that deters moths.
  • Safer Brand Clothes Moth Alert: This product uses a pheromone lure to attract and trap adult moths.
  • Bug zappers: These devices attract and kill moths and other insects.

Preventative Measures

Prevention is always better than cure. Regularly inspect your garden for signs of moths and take immediate action if you spot any. Regular cleaning, proper storage of food and clothes, and maintaining a well-ventilated environment can go a long way in preventing a moth infestation.


Keeping moths away from your outdoor space involves a combination of methods and regular maintenance. By implementing these strategies, you can enjoy a moth-free environment and protect your outdoor space from potential damage caused by these pests.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the difference between moths and butterflies?

While moths and butterflies belong to the same insect group called Lepidoptera, there are several differences between them. Moths are usually nocturnal, have a dull or dark coloration, and their antennae are often feathery. Butterflies, on the other hand, are usually diurnal, have bright colors, and their antennae are thin with a small ball at the end.

Can these methods be used indoors to prevent moths?

Some of these methods can be used indoors. Natural repellents like sachets filled with moth-repelling herbs or essential oils can be placed in wardrobes, drawers, or other moth-prone areas. Commercial products like moth deterrent scent pouches and clothes moth alerts can also be used indoors. However, it’s important to ensure proper ventilation while using these products.

Are moths harmful to humans?

Generally, moths are not harmful to humans. However, some large species of moths have caterpillars that are covered in stinging hairs or spines, which can cause skin irritations or allergic reactions. In addition, some types of moths, like clothes moths and pantry moths, can cause damage to clothes, carpets, and stored food.

Can I use insecticides to kill moths?

Insecticides can be used to kill moths, but they should be used as a last resort due to their potential harm to the environment and non-target species. It’s always better to try natural and eco-friendly methods first.

How long do moths live?

The lifespan of a moth can vary greatly depending on the species. Some moths only live for a week or two, while others can live for several months. The majority of a moth’s life is usually spent in its larval stage.

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