Homemade Citronella Candles Will Keep The Bugs Away

Published August 22, 2018

Lunter Home Ideas
Photo Mike Wakefield
June 08

Eating outdoors is always a nice idea during the warm summer evenings, as long as mosquitoes don’t wreak havoc on one’s plans.

Here’s a solution: a simple idea for a homemade citronella candle that not only looks pretty as a summer centrepiece on your table but will also help keep the pests away.


–1 large mason jar

–1 large orange

– 2-3 small cinnamon sticks

– Floating tea light

– Fresh rosemary sprigs

– *Lemon eucalyptus oil (optional)

Wash the orange and set aside. Fill your mason jar with water approximately one-half full.

Using a sharp paring knife or a citrus peeler, carefully remove the peel of the orange in slices approximately one-centimetre wide. Set them aside.

Cut the rosemary sprigs into five or six-cm pieces and place them into the water.

Add the orange peels and cinnamon sticks.

At this point you may add a few drops of lemon eucalyptus oil.

Top up the water level in the mason jar and add your tea light at the top.

Light the tea light and place the jars along the center of your dining table or side tables.

There are few variations of this idea. I have seen limes and lemons used as an alternative for oranges as well as fresh basil leaves to replace the fresh rosemary sprigs.

If you would really like to go the extra mile, try making your own natural bug-repellent spray. Although not as effective as the chemical brands, it still works very well and you will feel a whole lot better about using essential oils against your skin than a traditional store-bought bug spray.

Try this “homemade” bug spray:

– 12 drops Citronella essential oil

– 10 drops Eucalyptus essential oil

– 5 drops lavender essential oil

– 10 drops tea tree oil

– 7 drops lemongrass essential oil

– ¾ cup witch hazel

– 1 cup distilled water

– Empty spray bottle (available at dollar stores)

Add all of the above into your plastic spray bottle and shake well.

Barb Lunter is a freelance writer with a passion for home decor, entertaining and floral design. She also runs Blu Dog Staging & Redesign. You can find more information at bludogstagingandredesign.com.