We study them in the classroom as they build intricate tunnel systems and we sing about them marching in straight little lines, but when it comes to actually dealing with ants in our home, we’re perplexed as to what to do! It’s sometimes difficult to catch the problem of an ant invasion until it’s upon us, but that doesn’t mean you can’t shoo them from your kitchen and from your home. Ants have a very strong sweet tooth and will find sugary treats in your pantry right away if they aren’t kept sealed. The first battle against an ant army is to keep you home clean of food debris and other sweet treats like empty soda cans. But sometimes even with our best efforts to keep clean, a line of ants will march it’s way right up to that bag of oreos in your pantry. If this is the case, don’t fret! There are tons of do-it-yourself options to make those ants go marching one by one back out your doorway.
We like to add a spritz of vinegar to our fries, but ants most certainly do not! Vinegar is a fantastic alternative to chemical pesticides, and it’s kid and pet friendly! Combine a solution of 50/50 vinegar and water and spray away to your heart’s content over baseboards, entry points and anywhere you have found ant trails. Ants leave a pheromone behind on their travels that other ants follow and one of the best ways to advert their advance is to wash away this pheromone. Vinegar also doubles as a great multi-purpose cleaner and cleaning your counters, floors and other surfaces with a vinegar solution acts as a natural deterrent! The bonus about vinegar is though it smells quite poignant when it’s first applied, the smell dissipates once dry.
We like vinegar on our fries and we also like them salty. Ants hate salt just as much as they hate vinegar! Sprinkle a line of salt across your doorways and window sills, and ants will take that as you have nothing sweet for them to snack on. Flour also does the trick, as does chalk! The calcium carbonate in chalk deters ants right away and they will not cross a line of powdered chalk. You can safely use it in your garden too—it acts as a barrier against ants and slugs!
Citrus is not a crowd pleaser for our little marching nemeses. Lemons, which wouldn’t you know are another amazing natural cleaner, are a sour welcome for ants. Use lemon juice, much like the aforementioned vinegar spray, along all doorways, baseboards, cracks and crevices. Once you’ve used all the juice in the lemons, peel them before you dispose of them. Spread the peels in the backyard, around your front and back doors and up next to basement windows. The potency of lemon lets ants know that your home is not a place for their dinner plans! You can use oranges to deter ants as well, though not quite in the same fashion as you would with lemons as oranges are so much sweeter. Instead, blend warm water and orange peels until smooth and use this solution directly on the anthills close to your house. This encourages the ant colony to pack it’s bags and move along!
Ants are meant to live outdoors, not in our pantries or in our pants! If you’re dealing with an antsy issue this summer, first do an intense clean of your home and pay extra attention to your kitchen. A thorough cleaning can sometimes be all that’s needed to solve the issue. But if you have a persistent colony on your hands, it might be a good idea to think bigger than DIY! Our certified technicians at One Man and a Lady Bug know just what to do when one tiny ant turns into many. For inquiries on how we can best help you get those pesky ants away from your oreos, give us a call at 403-262-1666. We promise to help you keep the sweet treats all to yourself this summer!