Biologically speaking, ants are amazing little insects. They are super intelligent, they work in groups to create miles of underground tunnel homes, and they can carry a great deal of weight right on their teeny little backs.
That being said...ants are pests! There's just no room for these unwelcome invaders in your home or garden. That's because ants can damage your property, and do quite a number on your plants, too.
If the ants manage to weasel their way inside your house, they'll take off with all of your sweets so they can feed their mama queen. And if that weren't bad enough, the spiteful little buggers will bite you when you're not looking.
There's just no need to put up with that!
It might be tempting to stomp on these annoying critters the second you spot their ant trail, but there are better and more practical ways to send them a "keep out" message. Go ahead and check out the fantastic remedies listed below to find out how you can banish ants for good!
Cinnamon-Scented Defense System
Ants have a powerful sense of smell - they actually have about five times more odor receptors than your average everyday insect. Use that to your advantage and bombard them with killer aromas!
Although most humans love the smell of cinnamon, ants don't like it one bit. Cinnamon essential oil is a natural ant repellent that will keep ant soldiers from marching past your front door.
- Add 1/2 teaspoon of cinnamon essential oil to a cup of water. Dunk a cotton ball in the water, and use it to wipe down areas where the ants may live and dwell. Keep repeating this process once a day until the ants have vacated the premises!
- Leave whole cinnamon cloves outside, especially around doors, windowsills, and other entryways.
You can also put cinnamon essential oil in a spray bottle with water, and use it anywhere you find ant infestations.
Hot Cayenne Pepper Bath
This one is kind of mean, but it will definitely have the ants running and screaming in the other direction!
Boil a big pot of water - the bigger, the better! Then, add a bunch of ground cayenne pepper seasoning. Open the front door, grab the pot with oven mitts, and head outside. Do you see where this is going?
Pour the spicy hot boiling water anywhere you see access holes, such as cracks in the sidewalk, or anywhere you see live ants. The boiling water will kill them on contact.
Evict Them With Vinegar
There are quite a few things that ants will turn their noses up at. The tart and sour smell of vinegar is one of them! Which is great news, because that means you can scoot them out of the yard with a super-inexpensive ingredient.
Just fill a spray bottle with equal parts water and white distilled vinegar. Add a few drops of essential oil, such as lemon, which is another scent they can't stand.
Shake the bottle thoroughly before each use, and then spray baseboards, or other access points they like to sneak through. Do this once a day, until the ants are gone.
Borax And Sugar-Laced Cotton Balls
Ants love sugar! If you leave a cookie out on the table and an ant finds it, the next morning you may see an army of critters take off with it, one crumbly piece at a time.
Ants don't love borax. That's because it kills them from the inside out. If you combine the two, you have the perfect ant killer! Here's how you make it:
- Add 1/2 cup of white sugar and 1.5 teaspoons of borax into an empty jar.
- Add 2 cups of boiling water, and stir until the mixture has dissolved.
Soak a bunch of cotton balls in the water, and then place these glorious death traps wherever you have ants. Within 24 hours, they'll be on their way to bug heaven.
Food-Grade Diatomaceous Earth
Diatomaceous earth, which is made from the fossilized remains of marine phytoplankton, is a natural ant killer. It's a powder, but its microscopic razor-sharp edges pack a powerful punch! It will scrape away at the ant's exoskeleton, and dry them to death.
Diatomaceous earth can be found in the gardening section of home improvement stores and it's readily available for purchase online. The food-grade variety is totally safe for human consumption, and it also won't harm birds and pets.
Sprinkle the powder anywhere and everywhere you suspect ants might be lurking. This can include windowsills, beneath your fridge, around garbage cans, and near your front door. If you're bold, you can dump the whole lot directly onto their ant hill!
Watch this video for even more ways to eliminate ants.
There are so many great ways to make ants take a hike! While nasty chemicals can do the trick, there are plenty of non-toxic ways to eliminate these creepy crawlies. Which home remedy is your favorite?