Ant infestation is prevalent during the spring and summer seasons; as a result, prepare to handle them when they invade your yard and driveway.
Applying chemical ant-killers to get rid of them can cause soil and water pollution and kill insects responsible for soil aeration.
Therefore, it is worth considering using natural methods to kill ants invading your driveway and yard.
Adopting these methods helps eradicate these pesky insects without harming the environment, pets, and family members.
For this reason, this post will take you through everything you need to know about how to get rid of ants in yard and driveway.
Natural Ways to Get Rid of Ants in Yard and Driveway
Knowing how to get rid of ants in the yard naturally will help you exterminate these crawling insects and make your yard a no-go zone for them.
Here are some of the best natural ways to get rid of ants in yard and driveway .
1. Baking Soda/ Baby Powder
Ants use spiracles found on their exoskeletons for respiratory purposes. Using baby powder and baking soda will block the pores (spiracles) and thus suffocate these insects.
On the other hand, baking soda triggers an internal chemical reaction that will kill ants after ingestion.
How To Use Baking Soda/Baby Powder
Apply baby powder or baking soda in places with a lot of ants. It includes inside anthills, in ant nests, along the ants’ seemingly invisible scent trails, and around the nest.
Put up a barrier of baby powder or baking soda around living spaces outside your house, potential access points to your house, and food sources inside your house.
Ants won’t do much because they will go through the barrier but die within a few minutes.
Mix powdered sugar and baking soda in equal proportions to make an ant bait. The sugar will draw ants, who will consume it before taking it to their nest so that the remaining ants can have a share of it.
This method is effective because the ants that take the bait will take the surplus to the remaining colony, which will eat and die shortly afterwards.
At this point, it’s worth mentioning that experts have approved baby powder to be used anywhere without worrying about the risks.
However, the case is different with baking soda, which can dehydrate soil and grass. In addition, you must reapply baby powder or baking soda after watering your yard or after the rains because they get washed away easily.
2. Diatomaceous Earth (DE)
Diatomaceous earth (DE) consists of minute fossils from diatoms. Although such fossils are too tiny to harm people, many consider Diatomaceous earth (DE) as a natural way to get rid of ants in the yard.
DE particles penetrate the exoskeletons of ants, causing dehydration and death, which explains why ants can’t stand this approach. However, DE isn’t flawless since water renders it ineffective. It means you have to reapply it frequently when working outside.
In addition to its downsides, this powder can cause a great deal of discomfort when it gets into your eyes-which necessitates wearing safety goggles and a dust mask.
Although experts don’t deem it poisonous, you don’t want to scratch your eyes just because this ant-repellent strayed.
How To Use Diatomaceous Earth (DE)
Get food-grade DE from a local garden supply shop. It comes in the form of powder in a bag. Avoid industrial-grade DE.
Spread the powder over ant rails, anthills, and other areas where you’ve noticed ants clustered.
To eliminate ants that try to infiltrate your property, sprinkle the extra powder around your driveway, patios, swing sets, and other heavy traffic spots.
Sprinkle the diatomaceous powder at the front and all around potential access points, including windows, doors, and vents.
Additionally, if you have seen ants around the sink or pantry (since these are areas where ants find their food), apply DE to exterminate them.
Make sure you replace the DE powder after the rains or watering your yard because it will be moist.
3. Borax/ Boric Acid
The borax powder consists of boron, sodium, and oxygen, while boric acid is a refined form of borax. The two products kill crawling insects like ants by interfering with their digestive systems after ingestion.
Also Read: DIY ant killer without borax
Nevertheless, borax and boric acid have downsides too. They are toxic to humans and pets when inhaled or consumed and can hurt your plants too.
In addition, touching them without protective gear will irritate your skin. So, experts recommend wearing protective eyewear and gloves when using these products.
How To Use Borax/ Boric Acid
Mix borax or boric acid with ant-attracting food to make an ant bait. Make as many baits as you can, some with liquid food like syrup and some with solid food like sugar.
Place many baits in various ant-infested areas, both indoors and outdoors. High probable locations include the middle of an ant path, close to an anthill, or near a source of food.
When you observe ants clustering around the bait, don’t destroy them. Allow them to transport the food (which now contains borax and boric acid) back to their colony to be consumed by more ants.
4. Boiling Water
It is one of the easiest (if not the easiest) ways to get rid of annoying ants. They die instantly from the burning effects of boiling water.
The ants that survive will probably seek other habitats because hot water ruins their hiding place (inside a nest).
Nonetheless, exercise utmost caution when pouring boiling water because it can scald you badly. It can also ruin your turf and soil, creating a damp area in your yard.
Another drawback of boiling water is the possibility of it cooling before killing the queen ant, which hides deep underground.
How To Use Boiling Water To Kill Ants
Boil water in a sizeable pot.
Clear the mound blocking the nest’s subsurface entry by raking it away.
Pour boiling water slowly and directly into the ants’ nest entry point. Instead of dampening the ground around the nest, pour as much water as you can into the hole.
Check whether you eliminated the whole ant colony. If not, repeat the process after a few days.
5. Garden Hose Water
Besides borax acid, baking soda, Diatomaceous earth, and boiling water, you can use a garden hose to kill ants, especially those living underground. All you have to do is fill their habitat (nest) with water, which will eventually drown them.
Use garden hose water, bearing in mind that some ants can withstand these conditions for up to 24 hours. It implies you will have to soak the colony multiple times.
However, saturating the ground with so much water in one go may suffocate your grass, leaving an unsightly damp patch on your lawn.
How To Use Graden Hose Water
- Rake away the surface of the anthill to reveal the underground nest.
- Take your garden hose and aim the water at the ant nest’s mouth. Do this for about 30 minutes.
- Check the nest after the 30-minute runtime to ensure you’ve exterminated the ant colony. If the ants are still alive, repeat the process.
6. Soapy Water
Soap water adds to the list of how to get rid of ants in the yard naturally. The soap degrades the insects’ cell membranes and ruins the protective wax covering that keeps them from dying because of dehydration.
When you add oil, it clogs the spiracles and suffocates them. This method, nonetheless, demands caution because it poses a considerable danger to your plants.
How To Use Soapy Water
For each quart of water, add 1/4 cup of Castile soap or one tablespoon of liquid dish soap. Add olive oil, vegetable oil, or canola oil to make the mixture more effective.
Squirt soapy water on all ants you see outside the habitat to kill them instantly.
Pour the mixture into anthills to eliminate the remaining ants.
Continue pouring and spraying the mixture as needed since soapy water only kills annoying insects and does not have harmful lingering aftereffects.
7. Artificial Sweeteners
This wraps up the list of the common natural ways of getting rid of ants in your yard and driveway. Nutrasweet, Equal, and Splenda are artificial sweeteners that include aspartame or saccharin, which function as neurotoxins in ants.
The artificial sweeteners damage the ants’ brain cells, killing them eventually.
How To Use Artificial Sweeteners
- Combine the sweetener with one tablespoon of apple juice or milk to attract ants.
- Place the mixture in a dish and leave it where ants find it easily, for instance, near an anthill or where you see them cluster. Experts advise placing the baits in several spots to guarantee excellent results.
- Leave the traps and avoid killing ants drawn to them. Instead, allow the seemingly generous crawling insects to carry the poison back to their nest to be eaten by the rest of the colony.
How to get rid of ants in the yard naturally should not worry you any longer, especially after going through the seven methods discussed in this post. Whatever approach you pick, make sure you exercise caution to protect yourself and your household, not to mention the plants growing in your yard.
Hey there, I’m Derek Schew, a writer for Lawnholic.com, where we cover everything and anything related to lawns. As someone who’s spent countless hours tending to my own lawn, I’m passionate about sharing my knowledge and helping others achieve the perfect yard. From lawn care tips to product reviews, I’m committed to providing our readers with the most accurate and up-to-date information available. So whether you’re a seasoned lawn enthusiast or just getting started, I invite you to join our community and discover the joys of a lush, green lawn.