Ants can do good things for our gardens. They are great for turning soil since they allow for more water and oxygen to reach the roots of your plants. They can even take your seeds and bring them down into their tunnels. It can lead to those seeds sprouting and growing new plants.
But there are a lot of negatives when it comes to ants taking over your garden. They can damage your garden and plants by drying out the soil near the plant’s roots, which will cause the plant to die.
There are many ways to reduce or get rid of them from your garden that will not damage your plants, and most of the items to do this you probably already have. So, here is a list of ways you can get rid of ants from your garden.
Here is how you can get rid of ants in your garden:
Method One: Water
One of the easiest ways to get rid of ants is soaking the nest with water, and tap/hose water for about 30 minutes. Doing this will create a “pool” of water, but ants can actually swim and survive in water for 24 hours, so you will need to do this a second time within the next 24 hours.
- Place hose on/near the ant hill.
- Leave the water running for 30 minutes.
- Repeat steps 1 and 2 within 24 hours.
Method Two: Boiling Water:
This is another simple method to safely get rid of ants from your garden. Find the anthill or rake up the rest and pour the boiling water right onto it. Add in liquid soap because this will help kill off the ants.
- Boil a large amount of water (the amount depends on how many ant hills you have but if you fill your watering can with the boiling water that will be enough.)
- Add liquid soap and stir.
- Pour boiling water and soap directly onto the ant hill.
- Repeat the following day for best results.
Method Three: Vinegar
This option is very similar to boiling water. With vinegar, you need to find the anthill or rake them up and pour equal parts of water and vinegar directly onto the anthill like boiling water, adding liquid soap helps the killing power.
- Mix equal parts water and vinegar into your watering can.
- Pour directly onto ant hill.
- Adding liquid soap to the water/vinegar mix will increase results.
Method Four: Orange Peels
Orange peels contain a chemical (citrus) that repels and kills ants and can prevent the fourth infestation. You can add orange peels and water to a spray bottle and spray your plants anytime you see ants climbing on them. Note: This works with lemons as well. Lemon water and lemon peels can get rid of ants.
- Peel your oranges (and eat them).
- Find your ant hills.
- Place orange peels direct onto the ant hill and around the edges.
- Orange peels will decompose so there is no clean-up. OR
- Add orange peels to spray bottle with water.
- Spray the ant hills and surrounding area.
Method Five: Chemical Ant Killers
There are many different chemicals and removers available you can get them at just about any gardening store. They come in liquid, crystal, and powder form, and the labels will all have detailed instructions on the amount that needs to be used. These chemicals do not always kill ants on sight, so watch out for that when buying them from stores. Some chemical ant killers need to be ingested and brought back to the nest, and then they will kill off the ants slowly over time. If you want them gone fast, we suggest you get one that kills on contact.
- Follow the instructions on the label after purchase.
Method Six: Boric Acid
This one may take a little more effort but is still simple. Mix 2 cups of water with 3 tablespoons of peanut butter or sugar and 2 tablespoons of boric crystals into a pot and bring it to a boil. Make sure the crystals are dissolved and then cool, label, and store for feature use. When you want to use this solution, you will need to put the solution near the ants’ nest in a container they can crawl in and out of. For example, you can use a pop can and punch holes in it and put a bit of the solution inside.
- Add 2 cups of water to 3 tbsps of peanut butter or sugar and 2 tbsps of the boric crystal’s to a pot and let boil.
- Let cool after crystals have dissolved.
- Punch holes into a small container.
- Add solution to the container.
- Allow ants to enter and exit the container near the ant hill.
Method Seven: Baking Soda:
If you want to destroy the anthill, you can take baking soda and sprinkle it all over. Then spray it with white vinegar. The bubbles from the chemical reaction will release carbon dioxide, which will kill the ants when it reacts after digestion.
- Sprinkle baking soda all over and around the ant hill.
- Pour vinegar all over baking soda, causing a bubbling reaction.
- Repeat after 24 hours for best results.
Method Eight: Chalk
Sidewalk chalk or spray chalk are great deterrents against ants and can defiantly help get rid of your ant problem. What you need to do with the chalk is spray the chalk in the places where you see the ants entering your garden. You can also use sticks of chalk to draw boundaries around these areas. It works because chalk has calcium carbonate, which confuses the ants and limits their ability to follow the route other ants have used to enter your garden.
- Purchase chalk, of any kind, will do.
- Draw lines around ant hills with the chalk ( or spray or sprinkle the chalk, depending on what kind you have.)
- Repeat after rain or watering.
Safe, Easy, Long Lasting, and Effective!
So, there you have it, those are some of the easiest, safest, effective ways to get rid of ants and keep them from coming back. Just keep in mind when getting rid of your ants that they are not all bad. Yes, they are annoying and can cause damage to your growing garden, but they do have benefits as well. So, when getting rid of your anthills and the ants, you do not need to overdo it and go crazy because not every ant needs to be eliminated.