There will be some people reading this and shuddering at the thought of using any sort of product that will kill ants. However if your life style is living out the back most of the time, there will be occasions when an ant colony will invade your idyllic haven and spoil all your fun, hence the necessity to rid the area of pests. Its either you or them that will enjoy the life living outdoors. We wanted to take a look at the best ant killer outdoors.
There are over 12,000 species of ants and most of them are harmless to humans. They can carry bacteria, which makes them transmitters of some diseases. One particular type has been known to cause Bronchial Asthma and some respiratory allergies.
What the best ant killer for the outdoors
Like it or not ants are an important part of the ecosystem, but if they have become an issue for a comfortable outdoor lifestyle then there is no other option but to try to eliminate them. There are several ways to rid them from your back yard but it’s important that you choose wisely.
An ant invasion starts with a few lone ants searching for food. Once they find it they leave a pheromone trail for their mates to follow. Once one spots a potential food source, they go after it and their scent is left on the trail and other ants pick up on this scent, which is why you see ants following one another.
You have a few options to rid the pests from your backyard.
- Ant Gels: These come in a syringe.
- Ant Sprays: usually in an aerosol can. Alternatively spray bottles are used for homemade solutions.
- Ant traps: Usually in clear containers
- Ant Granules: Can be spread around the lawn. Are water resistant.
Try this natural eco friendly ant killer
Some of the best homemade ant killer tips to try
One very effective ways to kill ants outdoors is to mix vinegar and water in a spray bottle and spray the affected area. It seems ants don’t like the smell of vinegar and will avoid anywhere it’s sprayed.
Alternatively mixing sugar, borax and water in an old plastic container, with a lid, is also effective. Just poke holes in the lid so the ants can crawl inside and enjoy themselves. It’s an idea to sprinkle a little sugar on top to encourage the ants to visit.
A strong solution of salt and water sprayed on the ant trail will also be an effective ant killer. The salt dries out the exoskeletons of the insect and consequently they die!
If there is an ant colony near your outdoor entertaining area, try sprinkling some chilli powder or cayenne pepper on the source. The spicy powder kills them at their source and prevents them from coming back.
Baking powder mixed with sugar and placed in strategic areas is another way to eliminate the problem
Mixing molasses with yeast and sugar is another method, using household products.
5 to 10 drops of tea tree oil mixed with 2 cups of water used in a spray bottle or soaked onto cotton balls and placed strategically around the backyard is one of the best ant killers for outdoor use.
If natural options aren’t working for you, there is the alternative of pesticides that are commercially manufactured.
Sprays may suit some while others will go with the baiting option.
Draw a line of chalk across where the ants are trailing and this will divert their direction. It is thought that chalk disturbs their scent trail.
Leave your cucumber peels in areas where the ants are active. They really don’t like that.
Surprisingly ants will eat dead ants that have already ingested the poison, and so they too will die.
Planting mint, Tansey, Lavender and Sage around your backyard helps to keep ants away. And of course they will enhance the beauty of your back yard and they are useful to use in your cooking.
Baiting ants works – try this
The top ant killers you can use
An eco-friendly ant killer to use outdoors is Orange Guard 101 pest control. It is safe around food humans and pets. Although this product may not be as effective as you would like.
There is an inexpensive product on the market called Ant Rid, it’s one of the best ant killer products available, price wise, and has been around for many years. The idea is to put a little of the product on the ant trail and they will start eating it and then carry it back to the nest where the queen will also eat it and consequently die, No Queen, No ants!
Raid is very effective ant killer to use outdoors as it is a long lasting poison for ants. It is a chemical spray that contains Imiporthrin and Cypermethrin two chemicals that shouldn’t be ingested by humans and your pets. So be cautious if this is the product you choose to use.
Chemical ant killers
- Talon Ant Killer : This is a gel that is very attractive to ants. Now that what you want! Something to get them all excited about!
- Diatomaceous Earth : Is a type of sand containing fossilised algae. Spread around the yard this will tempt mauri ding ants to gobble it up. An excellent ant killer for the outdoors.
- Combat Max : A liquid gel. Best placed around the perimeter of your yard approximately every 10 to 15 feet.
- Bayer Advanced Yard Treatment : Works by spreading granules over the lawn.
- Terro Ant Killer : A liquid bait
- Advance Granular : pet safe when used as directed. There’s that old saying when in doubt, follow the directions!
- Advion Ant : is a gel based product that ants like to nibble on.
- Andro Ant Block : Creates a barrier around your home. Therefore making it hard for the ants to get to where they want to go.
- Raid Max : When sprayed around the barriers will protect for up to 6 months.
All these products work but caution is advised when using them. Be sure to follow the manufacturer’s instructions. There is that old saying again “When in doubt, read the instructions” good advice!
Try this ant killer
- Glass cleaner mixed with liquid detergent. Spray on the area where ant seem to be congregating. This helps to get rid of the scented pheromone trail that they leave behind.
- Black Pepper. Black pepper sprinkled around the spots where ants seem to be coming from will deter then.
- Peppermint Oil. Mix10 to 20 drops of essential peppermint oil with 2 cups of water and spray around.
- Lemon Eucalyptus Oil. Use this by saturating cotton balls and placing them in areas that you have noticed ants coming from previously.
- Neem Oil. A product of India Repels ants when used in full strength.
- Borax Acid. A poison that must be kept away from pets and children. Wear gloves when dealing with this product. Mix 8 teaspoons of sugar with ½ teaspoon of borax acid and 1 cup of warm water. Make sure it is well mixed and completely dissolved. Soak cotton balls in the solution and place around the backyard. Alternately you can leave the mixture in the containers, but be careful where you place them as you don’t want your pets to think it is a treat for them.
Increasing the humus levels and using mulch helps to discourage ants in the backyard. Try not to step on ants as this releases a scent called Oleic Acid, which is a signal to other ants to rush to their dead mates. Then you’d have twice as many!
What does it cost to get rid of ants
It doesn’t need to cost a fortune to get rid of ants, ordinary household items can be the answer, however it may take longer to be effective and you may need to use the homemade ant killer outdoors more often than you would if you used a commercially produced product.
Ants will stay away providing you don’t give them a reason for visiting. Clean up spilled food, and keep surfaces clean, both outdoors as well as indoors. Ants have a good sense of smell and will find the smallest crumb if you leave one to be found.
One word of warning: If using a Vinegar based spray as an ant Killer, don’t spray it on Natural stone counter tops, like marble Granit or quartz.
There are several options to find the best ant killer for the outdoors, and it’s important to be safety wise when using these products. Always wear protective clothing.