Ants are perhaps the most hardworking animals out there, but also the most unwelcome guests in any dwelling. While we can all learn a thing or two about perseverance and diligence on the job from these six-legged creatures, they can also be a major nuisance if they find your way into your home. When the weather starts to warm up, they will be out in droves. Sometimes it seems that a single crumb is all it takes to have them come running. One thing is for sure, if you find yourself dealing with an infestation of ants, you’ll do just about anything to have them gone!
It’s bad enough to have ants inside your home, but what if you were in a survival shelter or tent in the great outdoors, and found yourself dealing with an ant invasion? How would you get rid of them? There are several options out there to help get rid of ants, some use poisonous chemicals and some use all natural methods. Most commercial insecticides are toxic to people and pets, so many people are choosing to go for the natural options first. Most of the natural options are low cost, and many of them are things you might already have on hand. Let’s discuss some all natural ways you can get the ants out and keep them out!
This kitchen spice will add a burst of flavor to many baked goods and other dishes, but ants are NOT a fan. They don’t like the scent of cinnamon at all – so try putting ground cinnamon where you see ants coming in and out. You could also try a cinnamon stick laid out in a windowsill or on the kitchen counter. Another option to try – put a cotton ball with some cinnamon essential oil on it and put one on cabinet shelves. You may have to do this several times to finally have the ants gone for good.
This all natural pesticide known as DE is actually made from photo-plankton fossils. It works by roughing up the hard exoskeletons of many insects, and then their body fluids are absorbed, and they die. You can use DE all around the house and yard. Put some around your foundation, in and around doorways, anywhere you see ants getting inside or lightly sprinkle some over carpeted areas. Put some in your emergency kit or bug out bag, too, to have on hand in emergency shelters.
This common pantry staple is a great ant repellent. They don’t like the smell, so it keeps them away. You can fill a spray bottle with a half and half water/vinegar mixture to apply it around windows and baseboards, or on counter tops. Not only will it help keep the ants at bay, it cleans and disinfects, too!
Not just for cornbread! Ants like the taste of it – but unfortunately for them, their stomachs won’t allow them to digest it – so they literally will explode after eating it. You can sprinkle this around like you would the DE or cinnamon to get rid of ants.
We already know that coffee grounds are great for the garden, but they are also a good all natural insecticide! Most people have coffee in their home, and it’s certainly a beverage you need in a survival situation, so this is one you should have readily available. You can put some used grounds in a little plate or bowl near entries, or in spots where you have seen ants moving.
Besides using one of these natural products, there are also some preventative measures you can try to help keep them from getting inside your dwelling. Doing these things may avoid an infestation, or at least keep it from getting out of control.
- Don’t leave food or drinks out in the open. Ants are naturally drawn to all types of food, not just sweet things.
- Make sure all dirty dishes aren’t left out at night – you’ll wake up to an ant party in the morning! Either wash them all up or rinse them really well before going to bed.
- Take the trash out every day in the bathrooms and kitchen.
- Make sure food is stored in sealed bowls or jars. Take things like sugar, cereals, flour/meal, and crackers out of their original packaging, and put them in plastic zipper bags, or Tupperware type storage containers.
These are just a few of the natural methods out there to keep ants away. You may find that it takes several tries or repeated applications of the above products to get rid of the ants for good, but don’t give up. You can also try a combination of a couple of them at the same time. The best thing about using natural products is that they are safe to store and keep at home, or in an emergency kit. They are also safe to use if you have small children at home, or domestic animals. Many natural insect repellents also are multipurpose, which makes them great for a bug out bag, and definitely easy on the budget, since you don’t have to buy a wide variety of products for different uses.
Have you dealt with an ant infestation before? Did you have success with natural products? What worked best for you?