Why choose a natural ant killer?
Whether out of concern for the environment or for the people or pets in their homes, many people opt for a natural ant killer instead of a toxic synthetic version. Using a natural ant killer can be kinder to the ecosystem than a chemical spray, as well as being safe for the humans and animals that inhabit the area.
Boric Acid: DIY Ant Baits
One popular natural ant killer is borax, or boric acid. You can create a homemade ant bait by mixing a small amount (1/8-1/4 tsp) of boric acid with a food that will attract the ants, such as sugar, honey, or peanut butter. The ants will bring the boric acid back to their nests, which should eliminate the colony. Depending on your type of ant, you may need to experiment with a few different bait foods until you find the one your ants will like.
Note: While small amounts of boric acid are not lethal, in large amounts it is toxic, so use out of reach of children or pets. Also, boric acid is harmful to plants, so keep it away from your houseplants or flowers!
Earth Power: Diatomaceous Earth
Diatomaceous earth is another natural ant killer. While they won’t carry it home with them to their colony, ants that walk over a light coating of diatomaceous earth (DE) will dry out and die. Soon ants will avoid the area where DE has been spread.
To use DE, spread a thin, light coating over any problem areas where ants may enter your home. Don’t make it too thick, because the ants will just go around it if it obstructs their path.
Diatomaceous earth has two big advantages when it comes to ant control:
- It is completely non-toxic, and therefore safe for use around kids and pets.
- Also, because it is not a spray or liquid, it remains effective for a long time after application. According to the DE website, you only need to re-treat your home about once a month.
Citrus Spray: Orange Guard
Orange Guard is a natural ant repellent made totally from edible food extracts. Its intended use is as a deterrent, sprayed in cracks and other entry points, but a thorough spray will kill ants on contact as well, making it an excellent, all-in-one solution. It is entirely safe for use around people, pets, and food, and leaves behind a pleasant orange smell.
Orange Guard is inexpensive and easy to use, making it a great choice for people who don’t have the time or inclination for more complicated products.