AUGUST ALERT! ANTS!! – Homeowner Rx

How did all those ants get in my kitchen?

That seems to be the most asked bug question that we get in our hardware stores!

The small ants that invade your house are generally there for 1 thing, food. They’re headed to the pantry, kitchen counter, candy drawer, dog food and even after the late night snack that your teenager left on the table.

What do you do?

Start by making sure all your window frames and door frames are caulked well. Make it hard for the ants to find their way into your home in the first place!

First let’s talk about some organic ways to use as ant deterrents and eradicators.

Vinegar and lemon juice! Mix vinegar and water 50/50 and spray outside, around your doors and windows, or do the same with lemon juice. Supposedly, ants don’t like the smell and will turn the other way! Do a little reading and you can also find out how to use cinnamon and black pepper with the same results. Every now and then I would see my grandma throw used coffee grounds around the foundation of their lake cottage. She said it was to keep the ants out. I’ll let you guys tell me if that works or not.

Once they’re in, it’s game on! Put a capful of liquid hand soap in a spray bottle and fill it with water, and spray. It might take a few minutes to do the work, but it’ll get ‘em, and with the soap in the mixture, clean up will be a breeze.

But one of the best home remedies is to use Borax. Those of you over 55 remember good ‘ole 20 Mule Team Borax. It’s still available, and can be found in any good hardware store. Wink, wink. It’s the base of a few concoctions that really seem to work. 1 part powdered Borax and 1 part corn syrup makes a very inviting lunch for the ants. They take a tiny bit back to the nest, and the eradication of the ants begins. I also had a customer once tell me about mixing the Borax with powdered sugar and placing it in bottle caps and setting it around the house inside and out. It seemed to work for him!

One of the best indoor products that we have carried in our stores for decades, is a product called TERRO. Guess what the active ingredient is in TERRO? You guessed it, Borax, otherwise officially known as Tetraborate Decahydrate. How about that! That’s why it works so good.

Ant products for the outside of the house come in many forms. Granular, aerosol, pump spray, concentrate and powdered are just a few. Many options are available, with some more potent than others, so come on in to your local hardware store and we will make sure that you get the combination of indoor and outdoor control products that are just right for your ant attack needs.

AUGUST LAWN GRUB ALERT!
Just a quick note. Japanese Beetles seemed bad this year. Which means once the eggs they laid turn into white grubs later this month and next, your yard could be in trouble! The white grubs will feast on your grass roots which will cause patches of dead grass in your yard. Just like with the ants, if you see the problem, the sooner you come in, the sooner we can help you get rid of whatever is bugging you!

Good Luck!
Dave Umber
Owner, Umber’s Do It Best Hardware – Waynedale & Georgetown North

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