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All Natural Pest Control

Summary: All natural pest control is achievable for those people who don't like ants crawling across counter tops, but don't want to use pesticides.  A spoonful of cinnamon will make the ants go away.

More and more people are turning to natural methods of controlling invading pests in their homes. Long before the œGreen movement became popular, the pest control industry advocated using less pesticides and better exclusion, now known as œintegrated pest management or I.P.M. Here are a few methods you can go œGreen.

All natural and organic remedies will keep ants away just as effectively as pesticides. Lavender, cinnamon, cayenne pepper, coffee grounds, turmeric, mint or bay leaves sprinkled in a line across the ants' entry point will stop them in their tracks. Even eggshells have an odd way of keeping the ants at bay. A string soaked in clove oil or lemon juice and placed across the entryway will also stop ants from crossing.

Drying agents, known as desiccants, like borax or baby powder will cause ant bodies to dry up, killing the ants. Sprinkling these powders around the area where you find ants does a good job of controlling infestations. Shaklee's basic H is an eco friendly house cleaner that can be used. Even a simple line of white chalk sometimes proves effective. You can also use caulk to seal up cracks where the ants are entering.

A good way of keeping ants from getting into your house is to control them in your lawn and garden. Planting tansy, pennyroyal, mint, and sweet fern in the garden will deter ants. Diatomaceous earth, a soft, chalk-like sedimentary rock used in making dynamite, can also be used as an ant repellent. It can be purchased at most home and garden stores.

Cloves of garlic between deck or patio cracks will repel ants, too. Ants are often found nearby aphids because ants love the honeydew that aphids produce. Getting rid of the aphids will help send ants packing. Ants are often attracted to weak or dying plants, so taking care of your garden and having healthy plants will control ant numbers.

Ants are covered with pheromones that are unique to their colony. They use the pheromones to distinguish ants their own colony of ants from rival ant colonies.  When worker ants leave the nest in search of food they leave a trail a pheromones behind them for other ants to follow. Applying a mixture of soap and water onto ant trails confuses them and making it difficult for them to return to that spot.  A solution of vinegar and water will do the trick, too. Still another method is to mix equal parts Windex and Ivory soap.

If you want to kill ants without a chemical insecticide consider pouring boiling water into an ant nest. You might need more water than you would think as ant nests can be quite extensive underground. Three gallons should be sufficient.

If you are resourceful, you can make your own ant bait using a solution of honey, borax, and an aspartame like NutraSweet or Equal. Mix the ingredients together in equal parts in a plastic bottle and lay the bottle on its side overnight in a place where you have frequently seen the ants. Monitor the bottle regularly to see if the ants are feeding on it. If they are, they will be tracking some of the borax back to their nest with them and slowly poison their nest and their queen. Keep in mind, some ants prefer grease or protein foods rather than sugar. Place sticky glue boards strategically around the area to monitor your success.

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