July 5, 2023

How to get rid of ants in your garden

You’ve probably seen ants filing in and out of your garden when temperatures go up. Some may even have entered your home looking for sweet food and water. When ants start becoming a nuisance, it’s important to act before the problem gets out of control. Here’s how to get rid of ants in your garden before they invade your home.

Ants eating tomatoes

How to get rid of ants in your garden naturally

You need to go directly to the source to get rid of ants on your property, and that’s their nest. Here’s how to naturally destroy an ant nest in your garden.

  • Boiling water: The most well-known natural ant extermination method is boiling water. Find the entrances to the ant nest in your garden and pour boiling water into them.
  • Dish soap and oil: This method works well because soap and oil go through the ant’s exoskeletons and chokes them. Mix half a teaspoon of soap and one and a half teaspoon of cooking oil in a litre of water. Pour a small amount of the solution into a spray bottle to spray ants outside the nest and pour the rest directly into the nest.
  • Boric acid and sugar: This may be the most effective natural remedy for garden ants. Mix boric acid with powdered sugar, then put small amounts of it around the ant nest entrances. Don’t use this method if you have pets or young children who might eat it.
  • Diatomaceous earth: Food-grade diatomaceous earth is effective against a variety of parasites, both in homes and gardens. Sprinkle it around the ant nest in dry weather and again after it rains.
  • Insect-repellent plants: Plants that contain essential oils, like mint and basil, act as a natural repellent to ants in a garden. You could also plant marigolds—they’re pretty and keep ants away.

Most natural methods won’t work immediately, because the active ingredients in them aren’t as deadly to ants as over-the-counter poisons. If the above methods don’t work, you can try these other tips to get rid of ants, or turn to harsher methods, including ant gel or other chemical repellents, especially if ants have invaded your home.

When should you call an exterminator to get rid of ants?

If, despite your best efforts, you can’t get rid of ants in your garden or home, call a pest management company. These professionals know the different kinds of ants, how they behave, and how to effectively get rid of them. They can also advise you on what to do if you have a carpenter ant infestation.

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See also:

Ants in the house: everything you need to know

How to get rid of white grubs

How to deal with ants, millipedes and other insects

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