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One Dragonfly Can Eat Hundreds Of Mosquitoes A Day: Keep These Plants In Your Yard To Attract Dragonflies

Mosquitoes have a tendency to get out of control in the summer months. Many of us want to spend time enjoying our backyard pools, patio dining table and walks in the park, but mosquitoes and their itchy bites have a way of ruining these experiences for all of us. Backyard barbecues and lawn parties are enjoyable when mosquitoes come to join, but thankfully, there are some natural mosquito enemies out there that will help you limit the bug bites! Dragonflies can eat hundreds of mosquitoes per day, and they’re also attracted to certain types of plants you can easily add to your lawn. (1, 2)


Dragonflies and Mosquitoes

Dragonflies have a scary name for being such a beautiful, efficient natural bug exterminator. They’re often found buzzing around wet areas where there are luscious flowers and plenty of other insects. They’re great at hunting down the pesky bugs that annoy you through summer, even the ones that have the potential to carry diseases. Research suggests that dragonflies consume up to 15 percent of their body weight daily in just mosquitoes, horseflies, termites, blackflies, and midges. (1, 2, 3)

According to an expert landscaper, Christine Cook, “Because [dragonflies] are top predators in the insect world, they keep a balance with the insects in your yard.” In order to attract dragonflies, however, you need to have the right plants! (4)


3 Plants You Can Keep to Attract Dragonflies (And Reduce Mosquitoes!)

1. Fragrant Water Lilies

This is a lovely aquatic plant that is easily recognizable by its traditional, wide open bloom. They have uniquely shaped leaves and pointed petals that are radially symmetrical and tend to be either white or pink. As an aquatic plant, you can set these plants in pots right in the water along the end of a pool, stream, or pond so that the tops of the pots are about six inches below the water’s surface. The fragrant water lilies will bloom above flat, heart-shaped, glossy green pads and will be beautiful to look at and excellent at attracting dragonflies. (5, 7)

2. Swamp Milkweed (Asclepias incarnata)

Swamp milkweed is a relation to the well known regular milkweed. This version, however, produces white and pink flowers that return every year, making it a perennial. They are great for attracting butterflies, wasps, and bees, which in turn attract dragonflies who prey on these species. Swamp Milkweed thrives in wetland areas, though it can do well in wet, clay soil that’s kept properly watered. It prefers full sun exposure. (4, 6)

3. Pickerelweed

The pickerelweed plant tends to sprout one large spike of small, deep blue flowers. It can grow to be three feet tall and develops long, elegant, heart-shaped leaves. The spike of blue flowers tends to grow to be about six inches long, blooming in succession from the bottom up. As an emergent aquatic plant, you can set these plants in pots right in the water like the fragrant water lilies. The flowers and leaves will rise above the water with portions of the stem stretching below. This type of plant is great for adding vibrancy to a garden throughout the hot summer months as well as attracting those beloved dragonflies. (7, 8)


Mosquitos are unpleasant additions to what could otherwise be an enjoyable summer. Attracting some natural mosquito predators to your yard will greatly help reduce the bothersome bugs. Use your bug spray if you must or your insect-repellent candles, but if you want a more permanent fix then you should consider adding a few specific plants to your gardens this summer.

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