"A way to get rid of wasps! Lemon with 10 cloves or put out a saucer with cloves in it. Wasps hate the scent!"
|Lemon and Cloves : Warsztat Mamy|
This is a pin that I thought would be easy enough to research and instead has taken me weeks of research and emails to people to collect data on, only to I realized I was focused on the wrong part of the pin.
You see, I was honestly really skeptical about this. How often do we see natural remedies or pest control ideas on Pinterest (like garlic for mosquitoes) that just aren't effective. Having grown up in a very rural part of the country myself, I have seen the way wasps especially flock towards any fruit (you learn real quick as a kid not to run barefoot near the apple trees) Wasps like the scent of fruits and meat, so I wasn't too sure if a fruit like lemon would really drive them away. I spent some time on google trying to find if wasps really didn't care for the scent of lemon and was unable to find anything regarding it. I decided to go straight to the source. If there is one person who would know if wasps like lemons, it would be the owner of a lemon orchard.
I sent out a couple of emails and Karen from Lemon Ladies Orchard in California was kind enough to reply. She keeps bee hives next to her orchard (great for pollination) but hasn't noticed any wasps. Is that due to the lemons, or the bees? She sent my question on to other lemon growing friends of her. Susan Burchiel of Birch-Hill Organics replied and said she hasn't seen wasps in the orchards, but does have yellow jackets. Interesting, I started wondering if the honey bees and yellow jackets were chasing off the wasps or if really was the scent of lemons. Yellow Jackets are actually a class of wasps themselves, so I was starting to think maybe this wasn't a true remedy to deter wasps.
And then I decided to start looking at the clove aspect of the pin and that's where I became surprised. You see, a lot of bugs really do hate the scent of the cloves. In fact, it's one of the most popular form of natural pesticide and is used in even commercial products. (source) It's called eugenol oil, and is found in cloves, cinnamon, basil, and bay leaves. Now eugenol oil despite being natural does come with it's own host of dangers, mainly that in large amounts it can kill you if ingested. (source) But it works, and since this idea uses cloves in their natural form it's probably a far safer method than using just pure eugenol oil or other pesticides.
So if you're looking for a natural way of combating pesky wasps and other bugs at the picnic table, this is a pin I would suggest trying.