Our ticks here in Virginia are everywhere right now, and if your local ticks and biting bugs are thriving as well, then this remedy might just be a lifesaver this summer.

From a previous survival blog, I introduced you to my friend Rod Morey, who is an herbalist and modern day mountain man. When Rod and I ran into a mess of those tiny little brown ticks a few weeks ago, Rod ran to retrieve a silver spray bottle full of his famous bug repellent. Rod was kind enough to help us all out by revealing his secret recipe. You’ll need to make a trip to a health food store or some similar shop that sells essential plant oils (or get good at procuring your own plant oils). But once you have a bottle mixed up, you should have plenty of bug repellent for weeks.

“I find this spray useful as we have 3 dogs, and a dozen goats. We give them a quick spray on their legs and underbellies every morning. I too get a quick spray on my shoes/ legs and arms,” Rod says. “I had very few ticks on me since I started using this spray. And I usually get bit if there’s a tick within 100 yards. It’s all natural, very easy to make and it’s very inexpensive … I like that.”

Here’s the recipe:

1 pint distilled white vinegar
1 pint water
25 drops of tea tree oil
25 drops of lavender essential oil
Shake well and put in a spray bottle. Use frequently, like every 3 -4 hours when outside during tick season.”

Check out Rod’s blog for more recipes and herbal medicine info.

Got your own recipe for bug dope? Take a second to tell us about your brew in the comments.