Do you get terrified at the sight of lizards or do mosquitoes force you to shut your windows and enjoy the cool breeze? Have cats jumped across your garden and destroyed it? Do not panic! You can actually use indoor plants to get rid of these silly problems. Yes, you read that right, plants can atually help you keep insects out and even cure common diseases. Pencil Tree Euphorbia tirucalli The Pencil Tree Euphorbia Tirucalli is a native of Africa although its name, Tirucalli is an Indian name. Tirucalli has very few leaves and pencil like green branches that photosynthesise its food. This plant not just keeps lizards at bay but keeps moles, rats, fleas and aphids too. The flowers are yellow and insignificant. Its latex is poisonous, so animals do not eat it. The Pencil Tree has many uses in folk medicine. It is also used to make bio- diesel. In south India, villagers use it as a plant of good omen in all their auspicious ceremonies. Rue Ruta graveolens The common Rue Ruta graveolens, a native of Southern Europe which is called Nagadali in India is a plant that can deter lizards from entering a garden. The Rue has an unpleasant oily smell, but its leaves are an unusual blue-green. Its lime yellow flowers bloom in summer. Its leaves and oil are also used in Ayurveda for curing chest related diseases and arthritis. Catnip Catnip is a perennial plant growing to a height of approximately 24 inches. It is known to bring butterflies into a garden and keep harmful ones out. Not only do the flowers smell good but the leaves have a nice aroma. Many people grow it for their cats that are known to roll their bodies on the leaves. This plant grows in poor soil and return each year without much care. Studies indicate that the chemicals in this plant repel cockroaches and a few other insects. The oil of this plant has also been used for insomnia, to reduce gas and as a digestive aid. Eucalyptus Eucalyptus is another plant known for its medicinal uses and also repels mosquitoes, lizards, rats, termites, white ants and a lot more. It has also been used in traditional herbal medicines to treat a variety of conditions, including diabetes. The essential oil which is used worldwide is derived from its aromatic fresh leaves. It is also an ingredient in some mouthwashes. Mint Lizards hate mint and hence it is the perfect way to keep them out of your sight. Ants can also be kept away if you have a mint plant. It is also known to keep snakes at bay. However, mint is highly vulnerable to rats. You can find these plants here: Vriksha Nurseries 1 ganga apts , Irla railway society, Opp Papillion Hotel, Vile Parle West Contact: vrikshanurseries.blogspot.in Suraj Nursery Shop no.1, Near University Gate, Hans Bhugra Road, Near Grand Hyatt Hotel, Kalina, Santacruz (E) Contact: 9892397876/ 7738263312 Plants World Opp Charni Road station (East), Next to B J P C Institution, Near Saifee Hospital, Thakurdwar Contact: 022-23876134/ 9833751871 Bhagwan Nursery Poonam Darshan corner, Opp ALM Park, Off mahakali caves road, Poonam Nagar Andheri East Contact: 9869980906, 9920833512 Know of other household plants that might come in handy to our readers? Share below. Let's reduce chemical usage and keep Mumbai clean and green!