A Compilation Of Plants That Keep Ants Away

Sharing is caring!

Last Updated on January 15, 2023 by Urska

Plants that keep ants away will help eliminate annoying armies of ants that cover everything in sight, making life unbearable.

Ants are an everyday occurrence in gardening, but how can we keep them at bay without harsh chemicals. Sometimes it seems inevitable when you begin to notice mounds of ants starting to take over your home or garden.

However, take heart as you can be able to use plants to keep ants away naturally. There’s a fine line between beneficial ants and an army of other ants covering everything in sight. Because you cannot differentiate them just by looking, the best way to handle them is to use plants that repel ants.

Plants That Keep Ants Away

The only way how to keep ants away from plants naturally is by using scented plants. Ants rely on scents to communicate with each other and find new routes for food sources. Having plants with very aromatic oils helps deter ants from exploring further in your home or garden.

These plants include:


Pennyroyal is a relative of mint and has leaves that look similar. Using pennyroyal requires caution as it is a toxic plant. It is best used outdoors rather than indoors. If you have pets or kids, they may eat it, therefore, avoid bringing it indoors at all costs.


Spearmint peppermint or any other means can help repel ants by clogging up their sense of smell, making it hard for them to communicate. An easy way to choose the best variety of mints at the garden store is to smell them and choose the one with the most aromatic scent. Mint is good because you can use it both indoors and outdoors. Remember, if you put it in a garden bed with other plants, it will take over quickly overtaking the other plants.


Lavender is a lovely plant. It has such a strong intoxicating scent that fills your whole home. Most people use lavender because it is also very relaxing especially when used in a diffuser as an essential oil or as a wax melt. Ants hate lavender because it has a very potent smell. Lavender can repel not just ants but a number of other household pests, including flies.  It also keeps your house smelling good and free from all types of problems. Lavender makes it hard for ants to communicate or find food, leaving your property as fast as they came.

plants that repel ants


Rosemary is very strong scented and gets in the way of the ants making their communication hard. It is a good option for both indoors and outdoors. But, for people who think it is too strongly scented, you may opt to use it only outdoors and use less scented plants indoors.  Instead of bringing your entire rosemary bush indoors, you can grow it outdoors. Pluck a few pieces of rosemary leaves and spread them across your home; they will still serve the purpose.


Sage is a fragrant herb to cook with and thrives in any herbal garden when planted. You can grow sage outdoors on your window sill or in your dark basement using artificial light. A great way to use sage in repelling ants is to grind it into powder and sprinkle it where the ants are. You can also mix it with diatomaceous earth.


Catnip thrives in a sunny area, and it’s straightforward to grow outdoors and indoors. If you have a cat as a pet, you will want to be a little more mindful of where you grow this plant. Cats love this plant and are always playing with it; this could damage your plant. Plant it away from the cats to help you keep the ants away.


This plant is also known as golden buttons because of its tiny clusters of yellow blossoms that are aromatic.  Its strong scent keeps away the ants. Tansy blooms in the summer and does not die once it takes root. It is considered invasive and prohibited in some states. It is best grown away from pets and kids as it is toxic if eaten, therefore, best grown outdoors.  Since it spreads fast and wide, you can control its growth by cutting it back before it flowers or pulling it out by hand.  Always wear gloves when touching this plant to avoid any toxins being absorbed into your skin.

Using Outdoor Plants Indoors To Keep Ants Away

If you are experiencing an ant problem indoors you can use the above outdoor plants indoors. You can either use them as whole plants moved indoors or snip off a few pieces and lay them around your house. You can grow these plants on your window sill or in small pots, as long as they get adequate light.

71EK0H9AAvL. AC SX679

If you are moving outdoor plants indoors, ensure that the planter does not come in with other pests. An outdoor plant has typically all sorts of living things in the soil that you might not want to bring into your house.  Use a gentle hose to wash away the dirt outside the planter before bringing in the plants.

Final Thoughts

Whether you decide to grow these plants indoors or outdoors, rest assured that these are plants that keep ants away. Depending on the number or type of ants you are experiencing, you might decide to use a different method rather than these plants.

For example, if you have got carpenter ants in your home, you will need to remove them immediately. In such a case, you might not have time to plant any of the above plants and wait for them to grow. This is because these ants are eating away at the foundation of your home.

Regular ants are a nuisance, but carpenter ants cause measurable damage and should be eliminated immediately. Even if it means using sprays or calling an exterminator you have to do it immediately. Plants that keep ants away work magic, but they are not an ideal elimination plan in an emergency.

Learn next all about When To Plant Rhododendrons.

Sharing is caring!