Ants can be a menace. If you find your home suddenly invaded, you need to find a way to get rid of the ants. You also should look into some effective ways on how to keep ants from returning. Luckily, you can find the answer to both of these problems here.
How To Kill the Ants
It’s a little known fact that regular dish soap will kill ants. Simply spray the ant with a mixture of detergent and water. You can also use a mixture of water and Simple Green.
You can make your own ant poison simply by mixing Borax or boric acid with something sweet such as honey or powdered sugar. Other mixtures that work just as well include bacon grease and flour, and peanut butter. However, if you are having trouble with palmetto bugs, a mixture of boric powder, cornmeal, and powdered sugar will get rid of both ants and the palmetto bugs.
Once you have mixed your ant poison, place it in a baby food jar. Next, pierce several large holes into the lid and set the jar on its side. The jar will enable the ants to enter, but keep the poison away from any children or pets. If you don’t have a baby food jar, an old medicine bottle will work just as well.
You might also want to put a little poison on some foil and place it behind the covers of any outlets or light switches. This will help get more ants at their source-which is usually the wires of the house.
How to Keep Ants Out
While you are working on getting rid of the ants that you have, you also need to focus a little attention on ways to keep more ants from entering your home. If you haven’t already, check all your screens. Repair or replace any broken ones that you find. You should also caulk around all your windows at least once a year.
Keep all your pet food dishes inside a larger pan of water to prevent ants from invading the food. You can do same thing with table legs-the water will prevent ants from climbing the table and getting to the food. Petroleum jelly covered with cinnamon will also work, but it is better used for the tops and stands on hummingbird feeders.
Garlic is a natural repellant for ants. Sticking a few cut up clove between the cracks of your deck is a great way to keep ants away. Ants also dislike cayenne pepper, cinnamon, citrus oil, coffee grounds, cucumbers, mint tea, and lemon juice. Ants will not cross a line that those items have been placed.
Some plants have been known to repel ants naturally. Plant them around the house or in pots and then use the leaves in sachets or rub them around areas you want ants to avoid. Some plants that have been known to work include: atlas cedarwood, basil, bee balm, camphor, clove, citronella, chili peppers, cumin, eucalyptus, garlic, geranium, lavender, lemon balm, mint, pennyroyal, peppermint, spearmint, rosemary, and thyme.
Another method for repelling ants is to cover a surface with a mixture of peppermint toothpaste and dishwashing detergent. Dr. Bronner’s Peppermint Castile Shampoo will also work in place of toothpaste.
Finally, leaving a light on at night in the area where ants have been active can sometimes work. The light disrupts their forage patterns and will cause them to move elsewhere. Usually, you will find that you need to use a combination of methods before you get rid of all the ants.