Besides having health and healing properties, many medicinal plants have properties that deter external chicken parasites like lice and mites. These insect repelling herbs can also be cut fresh and placed around your chickens, or they can be dried, and added to their feed. Consider these plants when you’re looking for natural insect repellents:


Catnip is known for attracting bees and cats. It's also a good insect repellent for lice and ticks on chickens.

Catnip, nepeta cataria, is a perennial. Hardy to Zone 3. It can be stunning as a mass border in a garden.


Feverfew produces lots of small daisy-like flowers and easily reseeds itself in the garden.

Tanacetum parthenium, fevervew, is a perennial. Zones vary by species. Excellent insect repellent; by steeping flowers and leaves like a tea. Spray this cooled tea mixture as an insect repellent.


Lavender is a very popular and well-known shrub for its fragrance and vibrant purple flowers.

Lavandula species, lavender is a type of evergreen shrub. Zones vary by species. It’s popular for culinary aspects, such as flavoring sugar or as a dried herb for meats and sweets. Lavender is found in many soaps, perfumes, and bath products because it’s known to have a soothing and calming effect. Lavender is also a good insecticidal herb. Put dried lavender in your chicken coop for an enhancing and calming fragrance.


Mugwort and wormwood are beneficial as insect repellents for chickens when grown near a chicken coop and surrounding area.

Mugwort, artemisia vulgarius, and wormwood, artemisia absinthium, are perennials. They are hardy to Zone 4.