Ants are a major pest and can be rather annoying to get rid of. One or two isn’t so much of a problem but when you start finding a lot within your home or ant hills in your garden, roaming around pet foods or even as far as in sterile areas such as your kitchen. Pest control can be rather expensive and time-consuming, however, the good news is, in this article, we have 13 natural pest control tips to get rid of ants.
Why Do Ants Bother Us?
Ants, in general, aren’t a problem until they enter our homes or when they begin to create nests within our garden. The question is, why do ants enter our homes and gardens? Ants tend to enter into homes and gardens in the search of food and water when their original location has become low on resources.
With many species of ants, once one has entered your home or garden and found food and water they will go back to the colony and gather their nest mates to go directly to the source. Ants can be attracted to a whole range of foods, particularly sugary foods and can be a nightmare to get rid of.
The reason ants can be such a problem is, they tend to build their nests within walls or cracks in the foundations. They also favour indoor potted plants and take advantage of any small crevices that they can. In garden situations, they can make a rather significant mess by transporting soils from different pots, garden beds and general debris from outside.
Due to them transporting soils and debris around the garden it can result in gardens becoming soft and uneven, interfering with drainage systems and they can even take the seeds directly from your garden.
How To Get Rid of Ants Naturally
- Cornmeal As A Deterrent
Believe it or not, something as simple as cornmeal can deter ants. If you have places where they tend to climb then sprinkle a little oatmeal at the base of the location and just simply reapply as needed.
- Temperature Control
Boiling water can be used as a weed killer and can also kill your grass so it’s best to avoid pouring it onto grassy areas. However, to quickly eliminate an entire ant colony, carefully pour boiling water directly into the ant’s nest.
- Baking Soda
Another remedy to completely eliminate an ant colony is by using baking soda. Dust the ant hill with baking soda and then spray it with white vinegar, this should do the trick.
- Keep Trees In Check
Don’t plant any trees near your home or if you already have done so, ensure to keep them trimmed and remove any branches that are close to your home. This will prevent the ants being able to climb the trees and reach your home, certain types of ants can cause serious structural damage so preventing them reaching your home should be a priority.
- Citrus Sprays
Ants absolutely hate the smell of citrus, so making a citrus spray and spraying the most common entry points should effectively deter them. Also, save any peelings you have from oranges and other citrus fruits and place them around the entry points also.
- Homemade Ant Spray
You can easily make your own ant repellent at home by mixing 2 tablespoons of vodka, 15 drops of peppermint oil, 5 drops of cinnamon oil and 4oz of water. Place this in a spray bottle and spray where needed! It’s great for indoors and outdoors and will leave your home smelling fresh.
- Borax Poisoning
Combine equal parts of powdered sugar and borax, place in a shallow dish and set it out where you most commonly find the ants. The sugar within this mixture will attract the ants as they will see it as a food source which will encourage them to take it back to the colony.
Borax is lethal to ants and with ingesting the mixture, it will kill them. If you don’t have borax you can make the same mixture with baking soda instead, just be sure to keep both versions of the mixture away from pets and small children.
- Keep Ants Away From Your Plants
If ants are making a home within your plants, to deter them from returning you can place water in shallow trays and create somewhat of a barrier around your plants. The ants won’t swim across the water and this same method can be used around pet bowls and food.
You can also sprinkle cinnamon around the plant to create a barrier or plant a cinnamon stick directly into the soil. This should keep the ants away and keep your plants happy.
- Mint Oils
If you find you have a severe problem with ants in your kitchen or bathroom, you can place a few drops of peppermint oils around the most common spots you have seen the ants. Also, place it on counter tops and saturate cotton balls with them to place around the room.
Try placing some in cupboards, the pantry, near garbage bins or near any products that can attract ants. This should keep them away and stop them from entering unwanted areas.
- Cinnamon Is Key
A lot of these remedies require cinnamon and that’s because a lot of the time it has been proven to work! Place cinnamon sticks on window sills, door ways etc to stop the ants from wanting to enter your home. If the cinnamon sticks alone don’t work, you can also add cinnamon oil to them to add more fragrance.
- Pretty Yellow Flowers Stop The Ants
Have you heard of the flower Tansy? Well, ants hate this plant and growing it in your garden near other plants can stop the ants in their tracks. You can also place dried Tansy around your home as a repellant.
- A Spicy Remedy
Many people love cayenne pepper in their food, especially curries but did you know it helps to repel ants? Sprinkle it around the entry points and just wait, you should see the ant population within your home dwindle.
If you don’t happen to have cayenne pepper at home, you can use coffee grounds to do the exact same thing.
- Just Be Thorough and Clean!
One of the most effective ways to keep ants out of your home is to thoroughly clean. Thoroughly cleaning your home especially with citrus based cleaners will keep ants at bay. Also ensure to keep any types of foods covered, take out garbage regularly and keep pet foods covered unless the animal is eating.
Using natural remedies rather than commercial solutions is great all round as it is relatively safe whereas commercial remedies contain a lot of chemicals that can be unsafe and cause harm. You just have to be thorough in your efforts and ensure you take any preventive measures you can to stop the ants from entering your home or garden.