Updated: March 14, 2023

Earwigs, scientifically known as Dermaptera, are insects characterized by their elongated bodies and pincers. While they are not harmful to humans, they can be a nuisance when they invade our homes and gardens. In recent years, there has been an increasing interest in using natural remedies to repel earwigs, and one of the most popular options is osmanthus.

What is Osmanthus?

Osmanthus is a flowering plant that belongs to the Oleaceae family. It is native to Asia and can be found in various countries such as China, Japan, and Korea. The plant is known for its fragrant flowers, which are often used in perfumes and cosmetics. In Chinese medicine, osmanthus has been used to treat respiratory diseases, soothe the skin, and improve digestion. Additionally, it is a popular ingredient in cooking, particularly in teas and desserts.

Can Osmanthus Repel Earwigs?

The use of osmanthus as an insect repellent has been studied by researchers. According to a study published in the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry, osmanthus essential oil has shown to have insecticidal activity against several insects, including earwigs. The study revealed that the oil was effective in killing earwigs within 24 hours of exposure.

Another study conducted by the Department of Entomology at Rutgers University showed that osmanthus was effective in repelling adult earwigs. The researchers found that earwigs avoided areas where osmanthus was present and that the plant’s aroma had a deterrent effect on them.

Evidence to support or refute the idea that osmanthus can repel earwigs

While there is some evidence to suggest that osmanthus can repel earwigs, more research is needed to fully understand its effectiveness. It is important to note that the studies were conducted in controlled laboratory settings and may not reflect real-world situations.

How to Use Osmanthus to Repel Earwigs

There are several ways to use osmanthus as an insect repellent:

  1. Homemade spray: Combine one cup of water with ten drops of osmanthus essential oil in a spray bottle. Shake well before use and spray on areas where earwigs are present.
  2. Cotton balls: Soak cotton balls in osmanthus essential oil and place them in areas where earwigs are likely to hide.
  3. Planting osmanthus: Planting osmanthus around your home or garden can help repel earwigs with its aroma.

To effectively use osmanthus to repel earwigs, it is important to apply it regularly and consistently. Additionally, it is recommended to combine it with other natural remedies such as diatomaceous earth or sticky traps for maximum effectiveness.


In conclusion, while there is some evidence to suggest that osmanthus can repel earwigs, more research is needed to fully understand its effectiveness. However, using natural remedies such as osmanthus can be a safe and eco-friendly alternative to chemical pesticides. If you’re struggling with an earwig infestation, incorporating osmanthus into your pest management plan may be worth a try.