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Home Defense in the red bottle is the best thing for ants of any type and other insects. We live on the third floor of a condo building, but still get them, this stuff keeps them at bay for at least 6 months. You only kill the ones currently in your house, the rest just won't cross the stuff. I put it around the indoor intake for the outside air conditioning unit and the door to the balcony and that does the trick for 6 months. I also put it on the bottom part of my herb pots so I don't have an infestation, but the herbs don't touch it. I tried orange oil, tea tree oil, but sometimes you just have to fight back powerfully. They are way more of them than humans so I don't feel to bad. And the ones at my house will bite, so I really don't feel bad killing them.

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Most of these products don't work well when you have 4-legged critters around that you want to keep, though.

That's the problem I have. Maybe I'm overly concerned, but I don't want to spray for ants where the (indoor) cat will be nosing around. I also don't really want to be spraying pesticides in my kitchen. After several times spraying outside last year, they stopped coming in. (They seem to come in through the same route every year since we renovated. There's some place between outside and inside that's not fully sealed, but I'm not exactly sure where it is.)

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Most of these products don't work well when you have 4-legged critters around that you want to keep, though.

Terro ant baits, which are of the classic sweetener + boric acid variety, are both effective and fairly benign, which is more than I can say for the fancier products (effective, toxic) or for diatomaceous earth (not terribly effective, safe to ingest). I usually find it at independent hardware stores, and rarely at the big box names.

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To repel ants, try mint oil and tea tree oil. I put a little soap (in my case, Dr. Bronner's Sal Suds) in a spray bottle, fill with water, drop in some mint oil and tea tree oil, and spray wherever I find ants, including their paths. This repels them, at least for a few days.

That said, I am militantly opposed to poison in the home OR the yard. I support conservation of invertebrates, especially wild bees. If you poison ants, you're poisoning helpful invertebrates, including wild bees.

The way I look at it, for me, ants are a problem which can never be solved, just managed.

(Oh, by the way, spraying the ants does kill them. But I don't know any more benevolent and green way to do it. )

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I support conservation of invertebrates, especially wild bees.

Discrimination

(Oh, by the way, spraying the ants does kill them.)

Hypocrisy

(They seem to be enjoying the mangosteen. Drizzling dishwashing liquid down a crack in the wall merely diverts them to another crack (they get "confused" for a few minutes, but finally catch on - they're like The Borg.) Terro ant balls it will be.)

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(They seem to be enjoying the mangosteen. Drizzling dishwashing liquid down a crack in the wall merely diverts them to another crack (they get "confused" for a few minutes, but finally catch on - they're like The Borg.) Terro ant balls it will be.)

Problem solved courtesy of "The Healing Garden zzztheraphy [sic] 'Serene Dreams' pillow & room spray with chamomile," spritzed directly into all entry points. This was most likely purchased at a Whole Foods.

Quoting from the back: "This sleep-enhancing pillow & room spray creates a dreamchamber where you can slip into slumber and awaken feeling refreshed and renewed. Infused with comforting chamomile and natural extracts of vanilla bean and orange blossom. Spray lightly 2-3 times into the air or at least 18 inches above (not on) fabric, always aiming away from your face."

What it doesn't say is that it's the ultimate ant repellent!

Cheers,

Rocks

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Ants get really discombobulated by essential oils. I hypothesize that it disrupts the scent trails that the scouts lay down to make paths for the teeming masses that follow them.

Save the Terro ant balls as a nuclear option.

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FYI: Cinnamon sticks really do work on the itty-bitty type of ants, but the cheap stuff I bought at Best Way barely has a scent, so they're returning. I'll try some of the essential oils mentioned above since the creatures are coming in through cracks and pipes on the second floor and I want to keep them away from the kitchen downstairs. (I don't want to use a strong poison where it would come into contact w humans.)

However, if anyone knows where at this time of year, I could get my hands on one of those cinnamon broomsticks that reek at Whole Foods during the Christmas season, please let me know. Thanks!

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Last summer we found that Simple Green was an amazing anti-ant treatment. They die within seconds and the scent trails are ruined for a while (more than just a couple of days). Of course, eventually they come back, but the Simple Green isn't far away. I kinda like the smell, too, so I'm happy to clean the kitchen with it.prod_all_purpose_sm.gif Please note I don't recommend using Soylent Green...it's people, y'know.

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FYI: Cinnamon sticks really do work on the itty-bitty type of ants, but the cheap stuff I bought at Best Way barely has a scent, so they're returning. I'll try some of the essential oils mentioned above since the creatures are coming in through cracks and pipes on the second floor and I want to keep them away from the kitchen downstairs. (I don't want to use a strong poison where it would come into contact w humans.)

However, if anyone knows where at this time of year, I could get my hands on one of those cinnamon broomsticks that reek at Whole Foods during the Christmas season, please let me know. Thanks!

Last summer, i have to admit, we finally caved and sprayed outside where the ants were coming in.. We did use a plant-based poison. We sprayed the exterior wall where they walked, and the hole they were coming in, and the place in the ground they were emerging from. It was a hot, dry summer, and they were coming into the kitchen seeking water, hanging out around the sink. I don't think these particular ants were interested in human food.

I further have to also admit that first we tried the ant baits in the kitchen. They only worked a little bit, not well enough to bother with having poison, even as relatively non-toxic as boric acid, in our kitchen.

As far as I know, the only thing used in the house was a solution of Dr. Bronner's Sal Suds (NOT the regular Dr. Bronner's) with tea tree oil and peppermint oil, alternating with a spray of white vinegar.

Anyway, it worked. Although I have sometimes wondered whether my mother bought something stronger and just did not tell me about it. But I don't think she used it in the kitchen, if she did. I did not smell it, if she did, and I think I would have. I also think she would not have wanted to used poison in the house since we had two young kittens.

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Last summer, i have to admit, we finally caved and sprayed outside where the ants were coming in..

Follow the trail back and hit the nest with some Raid, kills the colony, and you can always put something heavy over it so the kittens cannot get to it.

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