MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — This is the time of year mosquitoes most often transmit the West Nile virus.

But there is an all-natural way to prevent mosquito bites by using sweet grass.

Native Americans have used sweet grass for centuries for ceremonial purposes and weaving. Some hung sweet grass in their dwellings and wore it in their clothing to keep mosquitoes away.

Now the U. S. Department of Agriculture says a chemical in sweet grass works as well as DEET insect repellent.

The agriculture department says more research is needed to see if a commercial repellent could be made from sweet grass.

Watch the video above from WCCO photojournalist Gordy Leach, where he talks with experts from the USDA and University of Minnesota about this repellent aromatic herb.

(credit: CBS)

(credit: CBS)

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