Summer weddings and bugs!

A version of this article ran on Portland Wedding Coordinator in August 2011.

 Can you believe, it's the end of May and the outdoor summer weddings in Portland and Lake Oswego are here. If you are getting married at one of the outdoor gardens, waterfront or riverfront parks or venues you are probably wondering what to do about the possibility of bugs.

Bug-off spray is a must at outdoor weddings, but here are a few  tips to make you the perfect wedding host:

– Avoid DEET-based sprays that can irritate skin. Lemongrass and geranium oil-based repellents are available and they smell much nicer.

– Transfer the insect repellent spray into nicer glass bottles before setting them out at your event. Empty glass spray bottles can usually be found in the bulk beauty aisle (lotions and soaps) of natural grocery stores such as Whole Foods and New Seasons. Wrap the bottle in a ribbon to match your scheme, and then it will be guest-book-table worthy.

(Vintage atomizers could be fun too!)

image from Polyvore

– Burning lemongrass torches or candles can keep bugs down in the immediate vicinity. Having gently-blowing oscillating fans can also help.

– If the area seems to be uncontrollably buggy, consider applying non-toxic lawn or yard insect treatments (some examples here and here) several hours or days prior to the wedding (get the permission of the venue owner first).

 

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