Ants Be Gone!

Ants Be Gone!
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antsFrom Old Fashioned Tips

While living in a rental house we were over run by ants. My husband by accident grabbed the wd40 and sprayed the trail. It killed the ants on contact and the slight residue repelled any more ants using that entrance. From then on it was my first choice to deter ants anywhere but the kitchen. In the kitchen I would spray the trail with simple green or 409 cleaner then go outside and spray the entry points with wd40. I have two dogs and neither one wanted near the wd40. It seemed to repel them also. I've used vinegar on small hills showing on a brick patio and that seems to do the trick. Vinegar is also good to pour on weeds sprouting between bricks. ~Jo D

Another good way to get rid of ants is to mix borax (found in the supermarket with the laundry detergent) and white powdered sugar together and set it out anywhere the ants might be. It works great!! I gave this advice to a girl at work who had carpenter ants. She tried it and came home to so many dead ants that she had to vacuum them up. It does work!! They get attracted to the sugar and die immediately. ~Mary Lou

The spice - ground cinnamon - will stop ants from entering the house. Just sprinkle it all around the baseboards and NO ANTS. Non-toxic and smells great. ~Nancy

I'm surprised to note that no one has mentioned white powder of any kind (last week), be it baby powder, talc, cleanser, flour, all of these will make ants run for the hills. I first saw it used at a campground. Someone sprinkled cleanser around their car's tires, which was where they kept their food. I couldn't figure out what the white squares in their parking spot meant! I tried it around my dog's dish with cornstarch baby powder (my daughter was 18 months old at the time) & they left immediately! No poison, no worries about the dog getting sick and they will NOT cross a line of white powder. I don't know why. At least the little black ants won't. I've used it ever since, I always have pets around & can't use poisons. I have never tried this on red ants, though. ~Kristina

My mother also told me that boiling water poured over the ant hill will kill them. Sometimes two doses are needed. It definitely works! Also, growing mint near the outside doors helps ward off ants. For some reason they do not like mint of any kind. Sometimes I even crush a few leaves and put them in my bathroom by the baseboard to ward them off also. ~Kathleen

Just in case you didn't or the readers know...Mule Team Borax is boric acid. It is fairly reasonable priced and easy access. It also works wonders with roaches and silver fish in the home. I made dough balls with a little grease, sugar, flour and boric acid. Just put them were children and pets do not reach. It took a little while but it worked. Much easier than letting off bombs and all that extra cleaning up. And much cheaper than hiring a company to a long term contract. ~DJ

I have heard that using cucumber peelings really work at getting rid of ants. I had this question in one of my newsletters, then got a response back saying it worked..I never would have thought of that and perhaps you had heard of it...:) ~Donna from

I remember when I was MUCH younger we had a larger ant colony in our side yard. On wash day dad took the water from the wringer washer and poured it over the ant hills. By the next week they were all gone. I would think a pail or two of very hot soap water would do the same. ~W. Peter

We have been invaded by ants. I cleaned scrubbed and ran out to buy ant proof dishes. I paid $9.00 for the cats and $12.00 for the dog. The cat's is so narrow she would not eat. The dog's was just TOO high and she liked her other bowl, as did I. You see the bowls are in the kitchen where everyone can see them. So thinking over a glass of lemonade, the idea came to me. The ant proof bowls were just a bowl with in a bowl creating a water mote. I dug out the glass pie pans, set the well loved and pretty pet bowls inside and DADA I have ant proof bowls. Hope this hint works for your ant problems as well! ~MJ

When it comes to piss ants (Ed. note: Many types of small indoor ants are often called piss ants -because of their smell-, or sugar ants, and can be any of a variety of small ants. ) try a mixture of borox and powdered sugar. Put it where your pets can't get to it. It will take two or three days but it works and it's cheap. ~Joe


Do you or any of your readers know how to get rid of ants on berry plants? My red raspberries are just covered with them, and each year it seems they are getting worse! Your column has always given me great info, and I am hoping you will be able to help with this one. Thanks! ~Mary T.

Ants are usually a sign of aphids or mealy bugs--the ants tend to protect them because they feed on a substance produced by the insects. If you see ants on your berries treat the plants for aphids with a soap spray. The ants won't harm the plants but the other insects can.


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About The Author

Brenda Hyde is a freelance writer living on ten acres in rural Michigan with her husband and three kids. She is a mom, grandma, gardener, cook and writer. She blogs on all of these topics at


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