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Frankincense For Mosquitoes

Megan Shoop

Frankincense trees grow native to arid regions such as those in Southern Arabia and Northern Africa. These trees are evergreen with thick, needle-like leaves and deeply furrowed bark. The trees favor ravines and dried river beds as germination sites, often growing more than 20 feet tall.

Smoke from frankincense wards away mosquitoes.

Though frankincense often is used in incense and burned for fragrance, it also has insect-repelling features.

Ancient Uses

According to the Scents of Earth website, the milky resin that hardens into frankincense crystals was burned to keep moths out of Egyptian grain silos and repel mosquitoes and flies from Arabic dwellings. In areas where mosquitoes carry malaria, both modern and ancient farmers burned the resin around paddocks to keep their livestock healthy.

Mosquito Repellent Qualities

According to Parya Varan Mitra website, mosquitoes hate the smell of frankincense. The intense aroma drives mosquitoes away with the help of the smoke. The scent masks the scent of humans or animals protected behind the burning frankincense, while the smoke clouds the mosquitoes’ flight path. Faced with these obstacles, mosquitoes will turn around and find more accessible prey.

Burning Frankincense

All you need to burn frankincense are some burning coals. Place a few charcoal briquettes or some charcoal tablets in a fire bowl, fire pit or censer and light them on fire. When the charcoal burns down to glowing embers, toss on a few pieces of frankincense resin. The resin soon will begin to smolder and produce smoke.


Burn frankincense at large outdoor gatherings to keep the air clear of biting insects. Place bowls of the smoking resin around the perimeter of the gathering area. One bowl every few feet should create a barrier that gives your outdoor events a pleasant fragrance. You also may toss pieces of frankincense into bonfires or place small, smoldering bowls on picnic tables. Instead of putting out your charcoal grill after cooking, add some frankincense to the hot coals.