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Lavender & Silverfish

Amanda Flanigan

A common insect found in many homes, silverfish do not bite but can be a nuisance nonetheless. These silver bugs will glide across the floor in closets, pantries and other out-of-the-way areas. Fortunately, homeowners have several options to deal with silverfish.

The lavender plant is part of the mint family.

Besides commercial pesticides, there are a few natural pest controls--including lavender--that will drive silverfish out of your home.


Causing no harm to humans or animals, silverfish move across surfaces in a fish-like motion. The wingless, silver-colored insects inhabit a variety of areas including attics, basements, closets and baseboard. Silverfish feed on items that contain a high level of protein, carbohydrates and starches. Household items that silverfish will consume include damp wallpaper, bookbindings, paper and starched clothing.


A stunning, purple flower that features a calm and soothing aroma, lavender naturally repels various insects including spiders, moths, cockroaches and silverfish. You can grow lavender indoors or out in containers or in a garden. If growing the lavender in containers, the containers must have drainage holes at the bottom. These holes will allow excess water to drain out of the soil. Lavender planted outside prefers well-drained soil. If you do not want to grow your own lavender, dried lavender and its essential oil is available at craft centers and health food stores.

Prevent Silverfish with Lavender

There are several methods to successfully drive silverfish out of your home with lavender. To increase the potency of the natural pest control, use each method in conjunction with each other. Fill several sachets with dried lavender. You can purchase empty sachets at craft stores or make one at home with cheesecloth. Hang the lavender-filled sachets in closets or other areas where you typically see silverfish. Made from the oils of the lavender plant, essential oil is a concentrated liquid that packs a punch for a small bottle. Fill a spray bottle with water and add 10 to 15 drops of lavender essential oil. Mist your home's air with the spray to keep silverfish at bay. Wipe the insides of cabinets and drawers with pure essential oil to repel insects.

Other Ways to Prevent Silverfish

Besides regularly cleaning, sweeping and dusting your home, there are several steps to help keep silverfish away. Store paper items--such as magazines and newspapers--and books in airtight containers. Since silverfish thrive in humid environments, lower the amount of humidity in the home by running a dehumidifier. Immediately fix leaky faucets, drains and pipes. These situations create favorable conditions for silverfish infestations. Silverfish can sneak into your home via cracks and crevices in the foundation. Fill these excess points with caulking to reduce the number of insects that come into your home.