10 Innovative DIY Ways To Repel Pests In Urban Gardens

Are you tired of pests ruining your urban garden? Look no further! In this article, we will explore ten innovative and do-it-yourself (DIY) methods to effectively repel pests in urban gardens. From natural repellents to clever deterrents, these techniques are not only simple but also cost-effective. Say goodbye to pesky insects and unwanted critters as we provide you with the ultimate guide to protecting your urban oasis.

Natural Repellents

Companion Planting

One of the most effective and environmentally friendly ways to repel pests in your urban garden is through companion planting. By strategically placing certain plants together, you can deter unwanted insects and even attract beneficial ones. For example, planting marigolds alongside your vegetables can keep aphids, nematodes, and beetles at bay. Similarly, growing basil alongside tomatoes can repel flies and mosquitoes. Do some research and experiment with different combinations to find the best companion planting strategy for your garden.

Essential Oils

Harnessing the power of essential oils is another fantastic natural way to repel pests. Many insects are repelled by the strong scents of oils like peppermint, lavender, and citronella. Mix a few drops of your chosen oil with water in a spray bottle and generously spritz it around your garden. Not only will it keep pests away, but it will also create a pleasant aroma in your outdoor space. Just be sure to reapply the spray every few days or after rainfall for maximum effectiveness.

Garlic Spray

Garlic is well-known for its pungent odor and natural insect-repelling properties. To create a DIY garlic spray, simply crush a few cloves of garlic and steep them in water overnight. Then, strain the liquid and pour it into a spray bottle. Spraying this mixture onto your plants will create a barrier that pests will want to avoid. It’s a safe and organic alternative to harmful chemical sprays and won’t harm your plants or soil.

Physical Barriers


If your garden is prone to pests like birds and small animals, installing netting can be a highly effective physical barrier. Simply cover your plants or create a netted enclosure to prevent pests from accessing them. Netting is commonly used to protect fruit trees, berry bushes, and delicate seedlings. Just ensure that the netting is secured tightly and doesn’t have any gaps where pests can sneak in.


A sturdy fence is another reliable way to keep pests at bay. Depending on the size and severity of your pest problem, you may want to invest in a tall fence to deter large animals like deer or rabbits. Additionally, a fence can add privacy to your garden and create a sense of boundary, allowing you to have more control over the space. Choose a fence material that suits your aesthetic preferences and ensure that it is properly installed to prevent any pests from finding their way inside.

Row Covers

Row covers are lightweight fabric covers that can be placed directly over rows of crops. They create a physical barrier that protects your plants from insects, birds, and other pests. Row covers are particularly useful for young seedlings as they allow sunlight and water to penetrate while keeping pests away. These covers can be easily folded and stored when not in use, making them a versatile and convenient option for urban gardeners.

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10 Innovative DIY Ways To Repel Pests In Urban Gardens

DIY Traps

Beer Trap

If slugs and snails are wreaking havoc in your garden, a beer trap can be an effective solution. Simply bury a shallow container, such as a saucer or plastic cup, in the soil near your vulnerable plants. Fill it with beer, leaving about an inch of the container above the soil. Slugs and snails are attracted to beer and will crawl into the container, where they will drown. Empty and refill the trap regularly to keep it effective.

Fruit Fly Trap

To rid your garden of fruit flies, create a simple trap using a small container and some ripe fruit. Fill the container halfway with a mixture of water and a few drops of dish soap. Then, add a piece of ripe fruit to attract the fruit flies. Cover the container with plastic wrap and poke small holes in it. The fruit flies will be lured in by the scent, but won’t be able to escape once inside. Dispose of the trap along with the trapped fruit flies.

Vinegar Trap

If you’re dealing with pests like gnats or fruit flies, a vinegar trap can help eradicate them. Fill a small container with apple cider vinegar and add a few drops of dish soap. The vinegar will attract the insects, while the dish soap will break the surface tension and cause them to drown. Place the trap near the affected plants and replace it regularly to keep it effective.

Pest-Deterring Plants


Marigolds are not only beautiful flowers but also potent pest repellents. The strong scent of marigolds deters many insects, including aphids, mosquitoes, and even rabbits. Plant them as a border around your garden or intersperse them among your vegetables and herbs to keep pests at bay. Their vibrant colors will also add a delightful touch to your urban garden.


Known for its culinary uses, basil also has powerful insect-repelling properties. Planting basil in your garden can deter flies, mosquitoes, and even tomato hornworms. Keep a few pots of basil near outdoor seating areas to keep annoying pests away while providing a fresh herb for cooking. Plus, you’ll have a steady supply of fragrant basil leaves for all your culinary creations!


While catnip may be irresistible to feline friends, it’s highly repellent to many garden pests. Plant catnip in your garden to deter pests like aphids, cockroaches, and even mosquitoes. However, be prepared for a potential influx of neighborhood cats who can’t resist the allure of catnip. Consider planting it away from precious plants or using protective covers until the catnip has grown tall enough to withstand some nibbling.

10 Innovative DIY Ways To Repel Pests In Urban Gardens

Homemade Insecticides

Soap Spray

A simple and effective homemade insecticide can be made using liquid soap and water. Mix one tablespoon of liquid soap with one liter of water in a spray bottle. Shake well and spray directly onto affected plants, ensuring full coverage. The soap will suffocate soft-bodied insects like aphids and mites, effectively controlling their population. Avoid spraying during the hottest parts of the day to prevent damage to your plants.

Neem Oil Spray

Neem oil, derived from the neem tree, has been used for centuries as an organic insecticide. Mix a few teaspoons of neem oil with water in a spray bottle and shake well. Spray it onto your plants, focusing on the undersides of leaves where insects tend to hide. Neem oil disrupts the life cycle of many pests and acts as a repellent. It’s safe for beneficial insects and won’t harm your plants when used according to instructions.

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Chili Pepper Spray

Spice things up in your garden with a homemade chili pepper spray. Boil a handful of chili peppers in water for about 20 minutes. Strain the liquid and pour it into a spray bottle. Spray this fiery mixture onto your plants to repel insects and critters. The capsaicin in the peppers acts as a natural deterrent, causing discomfort to pests without causing harm. Be cautious when handling and applying the spray, avoiding contact with eyes or skin.

Beneficial Insects


Ladybugs, also known as ladybirds, are well-known for their voracious appetite for aphids and other garden pests. To attract ladybugs to your garden, incorporate plants like dill, fennel, and yarrow, which provide them with a source of food and shelter. You can also purchase ladybugs online or at garden centers and release them in your garden to boost their population and assist with natural pest control.


Lacewings are another beneficial insect that dine on pests like aphids, spider mites, and whiteflies. To attract lacewings, create a welcoming habitat by planting nectar-rich flowers such as cosmos, daisies, and sweet alyssum. Lacewings are attracted to these flowers for nectar and will stay in your garden to hunt for insects. The combination of beautiful flowers and effective pest control makes lacewings a gardener’s best friend.

Praying Mantis

Praying mantises are fascinating insects that are excellent at controlling garden pests. They prey on a wide range of insects, including grasshoppers, moths, and beetles. To attract praying mantises, provide them with plenty of tall plants like sunflowers, and avoid using chemical pesticides in your garden. Keep in mind that praying mantises are opportunistic hunters, and while they may decimate pests, they will also eat beneficial insects if prey is scarce.

10 Innovative DIY Ways To Repel Pests In Urban Gardens

Organic Composting

Compost Tea

Compost tea is a nutrient-rich liquid fertilizer created by steeping compost in water. Not only does it nourish your plants, but it also helps to strengthen them, making them less susceptible to pest infestations. To make compost tea, fill a container with water and add a generous amount of compost. Let it steep for a few days, stirring occasionally. Strain the liquid, dilute it with water, and use it to water your plants or spray it on leaves.

Worm Composting

Worm composting, also known as vermicomposting, is an excellent way to convert kitchen scraps into nutrient-rich compost. By introducing composting worms, such as red wigglers, into a bin filled with bedding material like shredded newspaper and vegetable scraps, you can create a thriving ecosystem that produces high-quality compost. This compost can then be used to enrich the soil in your garden, promoting healthy plant growth and deterring pests.


Mulching is a technique that involves covering the soil around your plants with a layer of organic materials, such as straw, wood chips, or compost. Not only does mulching help conserve moisture and suppress weeds, but it also creates a barrier that pests find difficult to navigate. Additionally, as the mulch breaks down, it adds nutrients to the soil, improving overall plant health. Choose a mulch material that suits your garden’s needs and apply it around your plants to reap the benefits.

Sound and Light Repellents

Wind Chimes

The soothing sounds of wind chimes can serve a dual purpose in your garden by repelling pests while adding a delightful ambiance. Many pests, such as birds and rodents, are sensitive to unexpected noises and will avoid areas where wind chimes are present. Install wind chimes strategically around your garden to deter unwanted visitors and enjoy the calming melodies as a bonus.

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Solar Lights

Solar lights not only illuminate your garden at night but can also deter pests. Many insects and animals are nocturnal and are sensitive to bright lights. By strategically placing solar lights around your garden, you can deter pests that are active during the night, such as raccoons and skunks. Additionally, solar lights add a beautiful aesthetic to your outdoor space and require no electricity, making them an eco-friendly choice.

Ultrasonic Repellers

For a high-tech solution to repel pests, consider using ultrasonic repellents. These devices emit high-frequency sound waves that are inaudible to humans but irritating to pests like rodents and insects. Ultrasonic repellers can be placed strategically around your garden or attached to fences, creating a sonic shield that pests will want to avoid. Keep in mind that the effectiveness of these devices may vary depending on the specific pest and environmental factors.

10 Innovative DIY Ways To Repel Pests In Urban Gardens

Natural Predators


Birds are nature’s pest control agents and can be incredibly effective in keeping insect populations in check. Attract birds to your garden by providing them with birdhouses, bird feeders, and a birdbath for water. Choose plants that produce berries and seeds as additional food sources for birds. The presence of birds in your garden will not only deter pests but also add a lively and vibrant atmosphere.


Frogs are excellent allies when it comes to natural pest control. They feast on insects like mosquitoes, flies, and even slugs. Creating a frog-friendly environment in your garden is as simple as providing them with shelter and a water source. Add a small pond or water feature, and plant dense foliage or provide small shelters like overturned flower pots for frogs to seek refuge. By welcoming these amphibians, you’ll have a natural army of pest controllers in your urban garden.


If you live in an area where hedgehogs are native, they can be valuable assets in your battle against pests. Hedgehogs are nocturnal animals that feed on slugs, snails, and other garden pests. To attract hedgehogs to your garden, provide them with access points, such as small holes in fences, and create a safe space where they can nest. Avoid using chemical pesticides, as hedgehogs are sensitive to toxins. By providing a hedgehog-friendly environment, you’ll have an adorable and efficient pest control partner.

Advanced Technology

Automated Water Sprinklers

Automated water sprinkler systems can serve more than just their intended purpose of watering your garden. By attaching motion sensors to your sprinkler system, you can effectively repel pests. When a pest enters the designated area, the motion sensor is triggered, activating the sprinklers and startling the unwanted visitor. This method is particularly effective in keeping away larger pests such as deer, raccoons, and stray cats.

Motion-Activated Alarms

Motion-activated alarms are another technological tool that can deter pests. These devices can detect movement and emit a loud noise, scaring off animals and birds. Place the alarms strategically around your garden, focusing on areas that are vulnerable to pest damage. The sudden noise will startle pests, disrupting their feeding or nesting behavior. These alarms can be battery-operated or connected to a power source and are easily adjustable to suit different sensitivities.

Smart Pest Monitors

Take pest control to the next level with smart pest monitors. These devices use sensors and artificial intelligence to detect and identify specific pests in your garden. Pests are often detected through their movement, feeding patterns, or even the sounds they produce. Smart pest monitors can send notifications to your smartphone or computer, allowing you to take immediate action and implement tailored pest control solutions. Stay one step ahead of pests in your urban garden with this innovative technology.

In conclusion, repelling pests in your urban garden doesn’t have to mean resorting to harmful chemical pesticides. With a range of natural repellents, physical barriers, DIY traps, pest-deterring plants, homemade insecticides, beneficial insects, organic composting techniques, sound and light repellents, natural predators, and advanced technology, you can protect your garden from unwanted pests while maintaining a safe and eco-friendly environment. Embrace these innovative DIY methods and enjoy a thriving, pest-free garden.

10 Innovative DIY Ways To Repel Pests In Urban Gardens