Ants are tiny pests that invade homes and lawns in their search for food. The sheer number of ants and their speed of reproduction makes their elimination difficult. But several home products can be used effectively to kill ants and the queen, the only member of the colony able to lay eggs. It may take some time and effort, but you can eliminate your ant infestation with home products.
Things You'll Need
- Coffee grounds
- Laundry detergent
- Spray bottle
- Boric acid
- Powdered sugar
- Jar lid
- Cayenne pepper
Slice an apple into minute pieces and leave them near the ant's entry point into the home. The ants will bring the fruit back to the colony and the acid in the apple will kill them when consumed. This method may have to be repeated several times before the ants are completely eliminated.
Combine one part boiling water with one part coffee grounds and mix thoroughly. Follow the trail of ants to locate their colony, and soak it with the boiling coffee to kill them. This method can eliminate a huge colony of ants in a relatively short period of time.
Mix one part laundry detergent with 16 parts water in a spray bottle. Mist the liquid over any visible ants and they will die shortly after application. Wipe up the dead ants to prevent other ants from feeding on them. This is more of a spot-kill method, and will not get rid of the entire colony.
Combine one part boric acid with one part powdered sugar and pour into old jar lids. Place the jar lids near the ant's entrance to the house. When they eat the boric acid they will die. When they take the acid back to the queen, she will also perish and the colony will quickly disappear.
Sprinkle cayenne pepper around the ant's entrance to the home. The substance will not kill the ants, but will repel them and prevent them from crossing the border. Without the food they obtain from your home, they may die or move to another location.
Tips & Warnings
- Scouring powder, chili powder, dried mint, borax, chalk or talcum powder can be used in place of cayenne pepper to repel ants.
- Boric acid is highly poisonous and should not be used in a location that can be reached by animals or children. Always wear gloves while handling the substance and wash your hands thoroughly afterward.
- Colorado State University Extension: Ants in the Home
- University of California Press: Tiny Game Hunting
- Book: Handy at Home; Richard Karn and George Mair; 2002
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