July 02, 2007,
L. asks from Saint Paul, MN on June 30, 2007
How to Safely Get Rid of Ants?
I'm seeking some advice on how to safely rid our home of ants. We have the little black ones. I want to be cautious about using pesticides, as we have a 1 year old daughter who is, as they say, "into everything." So far, we've tried Raid bait traps, but they don't seem to be helping (they've been out for about 2 weeks). And they make me a bit nervous with the baby. Does anyone know of any "green" remedies that are effective?
2 moms found this helpful
M.T. answers from Eau Claire on June 30, 2007
Repel ants. Sprinkle Baby Magic Baby Powder in cracks, along a window sill, or under doors where ants enter. Ants will not walk through baby powder.
Mix in a small jar. I use a baby food jar and it keeps in the refrigerator: 1/4 cup of sugar, 3/4 cup of water, 1 tablespoon of borax. Stir and let it sit until it is all dissolved. Soak a piece of homemade bread crust about 1" square in the liquid until it is saturated. Place the dripping bread crust in the path of where the ants are coming in. In a few minutes the crust is completely covered by ants and you may need to place a couple more pieces in the area to satisfy the amount of ants you have. The next day they are gone and don't come back.
To prevent carpenter ants, keep firewood and tree branches away from the house.
Keep ants from getting into pet food dishes by placing the dish with the food inside another shallow, bigger dish with an inch of water in it.
For hummingbird feeders, cover the string with vaseline to keep ants off.
Plant peppermint near entrances or place crushed mint leaves near doorways.
Ants don't like the smell of peppermint. They'll avoid anyplace that smells like it, so start inside with the places you think that they might be entering. Next, do the outside where they might be coming in.
Possibilities: peppermint flavoring (used for baking), peppermint tea, and if you have a health food store nearby-*Dr. Bonner's peppermint scented castile liquid soap*.
I personally used to fill a spray bottle with mostly water, a tiny bit of dish soap(so it sticks), and enough flavoring drops or the peppermint liquid soap so that I could smell it. I just shook the bottle a little and then sprayed away - problem solved. My friend had luck just tossing the tea bags on the floor. (Peppermint Patty)
To keep ants from getting into your hummingbird feeders, take a sheet of Bounce (dryer sheet) and wrap around the hanger with a rubber band of tape on the ends. The ants won't come near it or get into the hummingbird's sugar solution. This works well especially if you have hummingbird feeders hanging from trees. (Cynthia Carpenter)
To keep ants from entering the house (or anywhere else) sprinkle baby powder on entry points. The ants won't cross and it is safe around pets and children. Bonus, smells nice too! (Charlotte)
To keep the ants out of your sugar bowl put a piece of lemon peel in it. I can assure they won't show up! I used to keep my sugar bowl in the refrigerator in the summer because of the ants and now I'm free of them! (Aldo)
Use a solution of water and bleach and spray entire path ants take, you have to lose the scent they follow. (Bell)
If you have small children or pets, put around cucumber peels. Just put them where you see the ants, and the ants will disappear! (Frieda)
How to get rid of the stinging from a fire ant. Take 1 tsp. of Meat Tenderizer Seasoning put in a little bowl and add a drop of water. Mix until pasty like and add to spot where the fire ant bit... IT WORKS!!! (Deborah)
For ants put orange peels on sill, put peels in ant holes and add water. They will never return. (Sammy)
To prevent wasps, ants, etc. from entering into the drain holes along the foundation in your brick home. Get some heavy (metal) black screen from your hardware store, cut it in strips approx. 1"x3". Flex it into a U shape and place in the the slots between the bricks. This lets air in and allows drainage, but keeps the bugs out. (Kenny D)
You can deter ants by putting Diatomaceous Earth down in the dirt. It supposedly dehydrates the ants and the die. Be careful though, read the caution for kids and animals. (Anon)
Ants dislike salt. Example: if they are coming through a doorway spread a good layer of salt in their path and they will no longer enter. (Naida)
To keep ants away from your pets food outside or inside, put some vaseline (in a circle) around the pets bowl. The ants will not cross it! Ever! (PinkSocks)
Fire ants: non toxic way to kill them is plain old instant Grits. The ants eat them, then go for water the grits expand inside them & they die, they can't expel gas, & you don't worry about pets getting poisoned. Just sprinkle & go. (C.K.)
Be aware of the ants movements. They usually head for their holes before it is going to rain. You can then target the source.
Ants can be destroyed by pouring ammonia into the ant hole.
Place bay leaves or whole cloves in the corners of cupboard shelves and window sills to repel bugs. These last about a year.
Put cinnamon or baking soda in entry point cracks to repel ants. Repeat occasionally.
Seal points of entry with caulk or masking tape to keep out ants.
Put coffee grounds around doors and windows to repel ants.
Try using ground red pepper or curry to get rid of those little black ants that invade your house, put it at the source of their entrance
This is all of the stuff that I found when I looked it up. Hope some thing work for you.
4 moms found this helpful
J.X. answers from Minneapolis on July 01, 2007
My grandma draws a chalk line across the area around her doorway so that the ants don't come in. She also will pour boiling water into an ant hole to kill them. I haven't tried either, but probably should since we have a big ant problem on the patio!
1 mom found this helpful
G.J. answers from Minneapolis on July 01, 2007
I use Melaleuca cleaning products and many of the products can be used to get rid of ants, spiders and many other uses.
and are safe and natural.
That is why I use their cleaning products, because they do not have all the chemicals, like bleaches and other nasty dangerous chemicals that are harmful to us and our kids.
any questions, you are welcome to email me directly.
you do however, need to be a member to order from them.
I could order something for you on my next order or i can hook you up with someone to get you a membership
1 mom found this helpful
K.S. answers from Milwaukee on July 01, 2007
Use cucumber peels! There is apparently something in them that ants do not like. My mother told me to do this and I was skeptical but it worked! In less then 24 hours the ants were gone. I laid the cucumber peels down along the baseboard where they were coming in (a solid line of them, no gaps or the ants will just come in through the gap) and that was it. My room smelled great and the ants were gone. Take precautions with wood floors of course.
1 mom found this helpful
L.A. answers from Minneapolis on July 01, 2007
If you can find the spot they are getting in through you can sprinkle cinnamon it that area and it actually suffocates them. It may sound weird but it works. We did it last year around our front door. It might take a few times of doing it too since the cinnamon can blow away (or get licked up by a dog :-))
1 mom found this helpful
S.C. answers from Minneapolis on July 02, 2007
I've just been looking this up. Apparently spraying them and their trail with vinager works and leaving bay leaves around. The vinager might be better to start with as bay leaves can cut the esophagus if swallowed by your little one.
T.J. answers from Minneapolis on July 02, 2007
There are a lot of ways to keep them out. One that we have tried with success is putting baking soda around doorways and cracks where they get in the house. It's a little messy, but basically harmless.
T.S. answers from Wausau on July 01, 2007
Hi like you was had the same problem a few years ago and we bought some of the Raid in the can that you use to spray on the OUTSIDE of your house by the doorways and they reccomend to spray it around the doors and window edgenging, and then we took it one step farther and spray the sidewalk and driveways cracks that led to the house and within a day or so it worked and have not had a problem since. Good luck
A little about me:
I'm married 12 years now, together we have been blessed with a princess (6yrs old) and then I also work full time outside the home at a job I truely love most days
K.B. answers from Milwaukee on July 01, 2007
sprinkling ground cinnamon in cracks and window sill and even door sills will keep the ants away. i have used this for years and it has never failed me and even smells good thru ou the house. i have used pepper in the past which works but with a child around i like cinnamon better!!!!!
C.F. answers from Milwaukee on July 01, 2007
My Mom used to use the rinds off of cucumbers to deter ants. Our porch had a tree hanging right over it and ants used to constantly come in. I was little at the time so you'll have to test this one out. LOL
N.J. answers from Minneapolis on July 02, 2007
I just learned this year to use salt, regular table salt.
Usually I would be so determined to find the point of entry and caulk it up...however now that I have two kids, I don't really have time to be searching for a 'possible' ant door to my house...
outside, this year I put table salt in the ant holes I found and around the doors. I learned about the salt from a professional gardener and just tried it and it seemed to work.
I like the cinnamon idea and the cucumber idea, they at least smell good.