Non-Toxic Ant Control

You know what they say – once you get ants in your kitchen, you can’t get rid of them.  Well, I’m determined to prove that wrong.

Enter diatomaceous earth (DE), a completely non-toxic, natural, and safe way to control your insect infestations.  DE is a very soft, sedimentary rock usually underground or underwater.  It’s made mostly of the fossilized remains of tiny algae and looks like a fine white powder when you buy it.  It’s completely safe for mammals, birds and the like – it will only harm very tiny creatures or creatures with exoskeletons (read: BUGS!) .  It works by scratching up the surface of the exoskeletons and getting up in the joints and literally drying out the insect, so it’s a mechanical rather than chemical insecticide.  The bugs can’t become immune to it and it keeps working as long as it stays dry.

My unwelcome guests are coming in through the kitchen window, underneath the actual window itself, so unfortunately there are no holes to caulk closed, unless I don’t want an operable window!  So as you can see here, I have lined the inside (and outside) sill with DE, leaving no gaps so ants are forced to crawl through it on their way into the house.  It can take a few hours to kill an individual ant this way, but it’s guaranteed effective.  In fact, not to long after I laid this down I saw a load of ants congregating on my sill.  I think they were all already inside the house and they were trying to leave with their spoils, encountered the DE and didn’t know what to do.  Pretty sure they all touched it though, so that’s a plus.  I just wiped them all up with a rag a couple of times and then I stopped seeing them.

I highly recommend DE for insect control, especially if you have kids or pets.  Just make sure you buy the “horticultural” or “food” grade DE, because the other stuff is too big.  You can put it in the backs of cabinets, under baseboards, or anywhere it’s going to stay dry.  Happy hunting!

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3 Responses to Non-Toxic Ant Control

  1. Pingback: Priority One | Jessie : Improved

  2. oceannah says:

    a friend told me about cucumber peels also… she swears by it, just slice off the peels and lay them about.
    *anna

    • Jessie says:

      Interesting. I also just read you can wipe down your countertops with 50/50 vinegar/water a few times a day and it will repel them AND destroy their scent trails, so I’m probably going to add that to the regimen as well.

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