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Gary350
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Location: TN. 50 years of gardening experience.

How to keep Ants out of the kitchen and house.

Some where I saw a thread about ants, How can I keep ants out of my Kitchen and House? Was that on this forum? That was several years ago?

Ants are looking for food. If you see them in the house look very close to see which direction they are coming from. You can often trace them back to a place where they are coming in the house like cracks or under the kitchen sink where the floor has a hole from water pipe and drain pipe or a window or door or bathroom. When you know where ants are entering the house crawl under the house and put a 5 lb bag of white sugar there. You will never have another ant inside the house.

We had ants in the kitchen and bedroom. I traced the ants to the center supporting wall in the kitchen behind the cabinets next to the refrigerator. Ants disappeared into a crack where the trim touches the floor. I put a 5 lb bag of sugar under the house at that location and we had no more ants in the kitchen.

We also had ants coming in through the garage door so I put a bag of sugar between the 2 drive in doors the ants stop there.

We still had ants in the bedroom and master bath. Ant were coming in through a crack between the trim and floor this is the same wall between the master bathroom and master bath. I put a 5 lb bag of sugar under the house at that location we had no more ants.

That was 8 years ago still no ants in the house. I crawled under the house yesterday the sugar bags are still there but no ants to be seen anywhere. Sugar bags seem to have about 2 lbs. less sugar but no ants. I wonder if ants had a sugar over dose and died? I don't know and don't care I am glad ants are gone.

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applestar
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Re: How to keep Ants out of the kitchen and house.

:lol: you have such unique solutions! I dust the inside of empty juice boxes (I cut them open) and sugary yogurt containers with borax and leave them near where they are coming into the kitchen. Mayonnaise and ketchup seem to attract them, too. I got the idea after having too many ant invasions marching up the side of the kitchen trash can when there were yogurt, etc. containers tossed in there.

I originally started by thoroughly washing the containers before throwing them out, but often they would find a spot or bit that I missed and still marched into the trash can... or they were after other things. Then I was mixing up a batch of borax and sugar water ant bait and looking for a handy container, and used a CLEANED yogurt cup... Then realized how ridiculous that was. Bait was already in the container-- don't wash it, just add a dusting of borax before throwing out. Then I decided there was no reason for letting them march all the way inside to the trash can. :roll:

...OBVIOUSLY... If you have pets or small children that would get into these borax-poisoned containers, take appropriate measures so they CAN'T get at them. :bouncey:
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Susan W
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Re: How to keep Ants out of the kitchen and house.

A sprinkle of cinnamon also works, sprinkled on sills, openings, trails etc. The cheapest seems to work, no need for the gourmet stuff!
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rainbowgardener
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Re: How to keep Ants out of the kitchen and house.

I know I did a post one time on ant control, collecting all the various methods, but I cannot find it.

Ant control techniques fall in categories:

strong smelling stuff: ants are repelled by strong smelling stuff. That includes aromatic herbs like mints (especially pennyroyal which is a very strong mint and essential oils like peppermint oil which are very concentrated), tarragon, bay leaves and others. Also onion, garlic, citrus peel, cayenne pepper, black pepper, cinnamon, basically anything strong smelling. Put it in your cupboards to keep ants out, around plants where ants are cultivating aphids, around the cracks in your house where ants get in.

powdery stuff: theoretically at least ants don't like to walk over powdery stuff, which gets in their spiracles (breathing passages) and clogs them up. This includes flour, powdered chalk, talcum powder etc. But you have to put it down pretty thickly. If it is outside it will have to be renewed after rain. Diatomaceous earth sort of fits in this category, but it is unique, because on a micro level the particles are very sharp and cut the insects who crawl over it.

Sticky stuff: ants don't like to walk over really sticky stuff. This includes vaseline, sticky tape, adhesive contact paper folded sticky side out, etc.

poison baits: classic is borax mixed with sugar, also baking powder and sugar.

Pour (a lot) of boiling water down into the ant hill when you find it.
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jal_ut
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Re: How to keep Ants out of the kitchen and house.

A little sprinkle of Diatomaceous Earth gets them moving. This is also a good thing to use on the cabbage to keep the worms off it. It is non toxic to us.
Gardening at 5000 feet elevation, zone 4/5 Northern Utah, Frost free from May 25 to September 8 +/-

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