Does Smoke Help Against Wasps?

Many swear that burning incense, coffee or even cigarettes keeps wasps away. But is this really true and which means are suitable for deterring the sometimes annoying insects – but do not make them aggressive? We reveal whether smoke helps against wasps or whether the home remedy is useless.

Smoke against wasps

To keep pesky wasps away from the coffee table can be found numerous home remedies. One home remedy against wasps is smoke. Wasps do not like the smell and therefore should give smoke a wide berth. There are several ways to produce the smoke.

Burning coffee grounds

The smoke from burning coffee powder or coffee grounds is said to be able to drive away the insects. While this doesn’t work in every case, it’s still worth a try and not necessarily unpleasant to human noses. The following steps are necessary for the repellent:

  1. Put coffee powder or dry coffee grounds in a fireproof bowl.
  2. Put matches into the coffee and burn.
  3. The coffee must glow and smoke to work against the insects.


Just like the smoke of coffee, incense can also be used against the wasps. On the one hand, the living plant can already act as a deterrent. On the other hand, you can burn dried parts of the plant. The procedure is as follows:

In a fireproof bowl or on a fireproof plate give dried incense. A layer of sand can also be used as a base and to protect the bowl or plate.
Burn the incense until it begins to glow or form smoke, respectively.
Once the incense has burned down, you should renew it. This is because in order to deter the insects, there must be a steady emission of smoke.
Extra tip: Instead of burning the coffee or incense directly, you can also use a charcoal tablet. This glows slowly, so that new coffee powder or new incense can be put on it again and again and new smoke develops.

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Incense sticks

Sticks with lavender or incense or special scents to drive away wasps can also be burned. The advantage here is that they smoke for a very long time and you also only need to put them in sand or soil, respectively, in an appropriate holder. The disadvantage is that the smoke emission of the sticks is comparatively low and you should therefore use several to keep a wasp away from the table.


Often the animals can be deterred at least for a short time with it. However, in many cases, the wasps get used to the smoke and then still do not avoid the table. However, if smoking fails, you can try some alternatives in addition or instead of it. These include, for example:

  • Stretching mosquito nets over the dining table
  • Using fly screens in the windows and doors
  • refraining from eating and drinking outside
  • Offering the insects alternative food sources elsewhere


  • James Jones

    Meet James Jones, a passionate gardening writer whose words bloom with the wisdom of an experienced horticulturist. With a deep-rooted love for all things green, James has dedicated his life to sharing the art and science of gardening with the world. James's words have found their way into countless publications, and his gardening insights have inspired a new generation of green thumbs. His commitment to sustainability and environmental stewardship shines through in every article he crafts.

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