Citronella is steam distilled from Cymbopogon nardus, one of several aromatic flowering grasses in the Poaceae family. Originating in tropical Asia and closely related to lemongrass, it was used historically to cleanse and deodorize surfaces. Today citronella is commonly cultivated in Sri Lanka, India, Myanmar, and Java. Citronella essential oil has a fresh, lemony aroma that is well known as a natural deterrent for outdoor nuisances. Applied topically, this essential oil can be used to help fend off flying pests so you can enjoy the outdoors annoyance free.