Monday, May 12, 2014

Healthy Home: Ants

Getting Rid of Ants

There are some easy, natural ways to rid your house (home, condo, or apartment) of ants. Here are a couple of suggestions:
  • Vinegar - this is effective because ants do not like the smell of vinegar and the vinegar also removes scent trails that ants use to get around. So blend a 50-50 mixture of vinegar and water to wipe down counters, cupboards, and other places you’ve seen ants. Do this regularly (maybe even 2-3 times per day) to improve its effectiveness.
  • Herbs and Spices - several work. Try cinnamon, mint, chili pepper, black pepper, cayenne pepper, cloves, or garlic. Sprinkle your choice where you’ve seen ants as well as around your home’s foundation. Like vinegar, ants do not like the scent thatis given off by the herb or spice. 
  • Borax - this is another 50-50 mixture. Blend the borax with jelly or syrup and place it where the ants will find it. This works because the borax in the consumed mixture damages the ants’ digestive system and outer skeleton causing death.   Borax has no toxic fumes and is considered safe for the environment. Remember that it can cause skin irritation, the dust may cause respiratory irritation and ingestion may cause gastrointestinal issues. Wear gloves, a dust mask and probably best not to use this repellent remedy if there are small children in the house.
  • Talcum powder - you can use chalk, baby powder or talcum powder (which is found in chalk and baby powder) and sprinkle it where the ants are entering into your house. Talcum powder has been reported as a natural ant repellent. 
Excerpted from NeighborWorks America’s Construction and Rehab Newsletter, 
May 2014. 

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