As summer approaches, one of the things that you might have been looking forward to is spending time outdoors in your garden. But before you start basking in the sunshine and listening to the birdsong, there’s something else to consider – wasps! Wasps can be beneficial for gardens as they help keep pests at bay, but many people don’t want them hanging around. While there is no surefire way to get rid of wasps altogether, you can discourage them by avoiding planting certain flowers and plants that attract them. Read on to learn more about Plants that Attract Wasps, how to identify them, and what you can do to prevent a wasp infestation in your garden.
You may be thinking why would we want to attract wasps? Usually we are looking into what are the best wasp repellent plants. But wasps are actually beneficial to the environment and this is why we don’t want to kill them or wipe them out.
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Wasps are actually extremely beneficial to humans. Wasps prey upon almost every insect species on earth either for food or as a host for its parasitic larvae. Wasps are so good at controlling pest populations that the agriculture industry now regularly deploys them to protect crops.
Read more about how Wasps are Good for Your Garden.
Learning which plants are most likely to attract wasps is the best way to manage their numbers, so you can reap the benefits of having them around without risking stings.
Fruit trees are practically guaranteed to attract wasps because they like sweet things, and will hang out around trees with ripe fruit to gorge themselves on juice.
Most flowering plants will attract wasps because of the nectar, which is another food source for them, and the fragrance.
What Flowers are Wasps Attracted to?
While wasps love most flowers, there are certain ones that are more likely to attract them than others. Blue, purple, white, and yellow flowers are most attractive to wasps, whereas reddish-colored blossoms are thought to be less appealing. This is why we suggest geraniums for flowers that will not attract wasps.
This is an herb with a sweet licorice or anise scent that attracts bees, butterflies and wasps with its small yellow flowers. Fennel grows in full sun and thrives in zones 4 to 9. This herb can sometimes reach a height of 6 feet. You can use it in place of onion when cooking.
Queen Anne’s Lace
This flower is named for the delicate white flower heads that resemble lace. Beware the leaves can cause skin irritation. Queen Anne’s lace grows to 4 feet tall and flowers bloom from early spring into the fall. It attracts insects, which the wasps like to feed on.
Although some gardeners believe that Queen Anne’s lace is a weed, the plant strongly attracts parasitic wasps, which find the nectar an important food source.GardenGuides.com
This is an early-blooming plant which feeds the wasps in early spring when there are fewer floral resources available during those times.
Autumn Joy, Frosted Fire, and Dynomite are all part of the sedum family and are fairly drought tolerant but with regular watering they will flourish.
Because sedum does so well in dry soil, these plants are great for raised beds, hillside slopes, sandy soil, rock gardens, crevice gardens, containers, and green roofs.
Agastache, also known as Anise Hyssop, is a tender perennial with fragrant leaves and colorful flower spikes all summer long. The Agastache flower is commonly found in purple to lavender, but may also bloom in pink, rose, blue, white, and orange. Growing Agastache as a drought-loving perennial actually produces the best plants.
Agastache requires no special skills or care. Agastache is in the Hyssop family of herbs and makes a flavorful tea. The leaves resemble catmint and are a dull green with heavy veining.
Boneset is sometimes grown and foraged for its healing properties but it also attracts pollinators. Its leaves are hard to miss, as they grow on opposite sides of the stem and connect at the base, which creates the illusion that the stem grows up out of the center of the leaves. The flowers are small, white, and tubular, and appear in flat clusters at the tops of the stems in late summer. The plants grow naturally in wetlands and along the banks of streams, and they perform well even in very wet soil. They like partial to full sun and make great additions to the woodland garden.