Yellow Jacket & Wasp Repellent for Patios

Wasp Repellent

Wasps and Yellow Jackets are notorious for being useless pests that can quickly spoil a summertime gathering of family and friends. 

While they’re pests in the sense that they don’t really help pollinate and they can (& will sting!) they are also beneficial, particularly if you like to garden. Here’s a simple DIY wasp repellent that works great, without having to spray harsh chemicals in your yard!


The main diet of a yellow jacket consists of flies, caterpillars, and spiders. They do collect flower nectar and fruit sugars to feed their queens.

Wasps tend to feed on house fly and blowfly larvae, but more importantly, they chow down on crop-destroying insects such as grubs, caterpillars and weevils.

Yellow Jacket & Wasp Repellent for Patios

To prevent them from ruining your Summer Party without having to spray harsh chemicals and kill them off here’s a simple trick. Slice a fresh cucumber into thin slices and arrange them in a single layer on an aluminum pie plate (or 9×13 dish, round cake pan, etc).

The point is, the cucumber must be fresh when you slice it and the pan must be aluminum. Place a couple out and around the patio, deck or picnic table.


The cucumber reacts with the aluminum and gives off a chemical reaction/scent that is undetectable to humans but drives wasps and yellow-jackets away and makes them flee the area.

How to Remove a Wasp Nest Safely

While we’ve already addressed that wasps and yellow jackets are actually beneficial to have around, they have a tendency to build their nests in unfortunate places. If you must remove a nest you can place 1/4 cup of Dawn dish detergent (Or Joy or Sunlight) in a hose sprayer, fill with water and blast the nest from 3-5 feet away.

This is best done at night because all of the wasps will have already returned to the nest. Before doing this, test your hose to ensure that it has excellent water pressure! The sudsy water will cling to each wasp, causing it to drop to the ground.

We’d Love to hear your Tried & True Natural Pest Repellent Ideas too…


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About Liss 4229 Articles
Melissa Burnell, known to her friends and fans as "Liss," grew up in Southern Maine, now residing in sunny South Carolina. As a busy Wife, Mother of two sons, an avid photographer, and self-employed entrepreneur, Liss understands the value of both time and money.


  1. i will try this if i ever have the problem. at my house i have a bumblebee nest somewhere nearby. i live almost in the woods and the nest is not in the yard.

    they keep the wasp and yellow jackets chased off. they also pollinate my squash, tomatoes and even my cucumbers. they don’t bother us at all.

    they have been here about 5 years now. I’m actually thinking of building a couple Bumblebee houses and putting them in the woods near the house.

  2. can also use 1 cup water, itbsp vinegar, and 1/4 cup dish soap in spray bottle to kill bugs, and ants..soap attacks thier nervous system, and drowns them

  3. Cool the cucumber and aluminum pan is a new trick I’ve never heard of will definitely keep this one in mind! Thanks.

  4. Wonder how these tips would work on Boring Bees?
    We have them everywhere and I try to kill them with a badminton racquet but I just can’t get them all, they then drill into the wood and lay their eggs, thus more of them every year.

    • Wonder how these tips would work on Boring Bees?
      We have them everywhere and I try to kill them with a badminton racquet but I just can’t get them all, they then drill into the wood and lay their eggs, thus more of them every year.

      I fill the bore holes with spray foam every time I see one.

  5. Thank you for this tip, I just had to try this right now we have a big wasp nest behind out shed up in the eve, Yikes hope it works because when my husband knocked the nest down with a high pressure hose they all came back looking for the nest and won’t leave

  6. Please do not kill bees or we will no longer have food. This cucumber pan idea is safe for all and easy

  7. I’m glad this was here my little brother was holding and petting a Wasp Queen for five minuets on my trampoline Andrew she didn’t sting once and also my dad build a tool shed in our yard and I hope no wasps make a $tupid nest on it! 🐝🐝🐝

  8. This is fascinating! I’m going to try it this summer. After one nasty yellow jacket sting, I’m all for keeping them far from my yard.

    I would love to see the science behind how this works. Where did you learn about it? What is it about the reaction between aluminum and…whatever chemical is in the cucumber, that deters wasps?

  9. We tried the cucumber technique this past weekend.. Not only did it NOT work, they loved the cucumbers.. They attacked the aluminum trays with the slices on it and ate until all the meat from the cucumber was gone..

    So don’t put them near where you want to be but out a ways from your patio or deck…

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