7. I live in the NW, Portland area. It worked in varying degrees for each method. The theory for the reason Borax ant killers work is that once it gets eaten by the ants, the Borax causes them to have gas build up in their systems. Carol. Are Ants Not Eating Bait? Would I have to cook the borax in liquid first? There are all sorts of home made ant killer recipes available online. Maybe in Australia they still do. Additionally, be careful when you’re using it because it might cause skin irritation. The window sills are the only problems. Here’s some science on the topic from your friends at University of California, Riverside: http://urban.ucr.edu/docs/Argentine%20Ant/2000%20Klotz%20et%20al.%20Toxicity%20and%20Repellency%20of%20Borate-Sucrose%20.pdf. Thanks for all your great comments. You put a lot of effort into your experiment! The Gardening Cook is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to amazon.com. There is so much out there on the internet and one never knows if it is just passed on or accurate. For a 100ml batch, that means 100ml (3.3 oz) water, 25g (5 tsp) sugar, and 1g borax (1/5 tsp), Perfect! If the ants are not eating the borax, mix the cleaner with equal parts sugar to make it more appealing. That killed them instantly. Thanks for sharing it! Click here for instructions on how to enable JavaScript in your browser. Sugar loving ants swarm around sweet baits like Terro. I have to thank you all, reading most of the comments I’ve settled on this mix and it has proven both successful and very economical. With the ingredients in hand, I performed the following steps: Trying multiple baits at once (ie one with peanut butter, one that is sugar based) like you did can be a good idea. Thanks for sharing this it really got me thinking as to what method to try. Hi Deb. For this reason, people with pets should avoid using products around the home that contain borax. It was very interesting to read. Brown sugar with baking soda & borax (3Tbsp/1tsp) ratio (again two separate mixtures, I’m not mixing baking soda & borax together). Careful about impacting other animals too. That was one combination I was surprized was not tried in the testing. Good point. evaporation and consumption by ants will do the rest. Hi Val. Thank you for this very informative article. Have her try protein based traps instead. I have had good success with sugar water and borax though I add orange or lemon juice which seems to get them going. The food does not feed them, the water content does not slake their thirst. You need an exterminator Heather. Addition of flour will kill all the existing ants … Allow the mixture to cool and add to an old spray bottle. In a liquid solution, 10% sugar is fine. The peanut butter required less replacing of the bait since it did not form a film but it did get somewhat firm. Good luck getting rid of them. It should last us for quite a while. Is. I’m getting the impression the reason it’s so hard to find a real answer for the best sugar/borax mix is because people are talking about percentages and it’s not making sense. To keep pests, specifically fleas, at bay, he sprinkled Borax directly into then yard (grass, gravel, dirt, bark dust, etc.). , HI Carol. I hate to see them and wipe them all up, so I never got a chance to see this work! Marvin, Glad you liked the article Marvin and thanks for the companion plants tip. Carol, 1 C water (heat in the micro for 1&1/2 mins) Bob, from personal experience with ants coming over from across property lines and neighbors wanting a “safe” treatment, I can totally recommend using food grade diatomaceous earth. Regards Rob, The main thing it that I feel going by my results is that the original nest was eventually destroyed, but after some time you can exspect for a new scouts from a different colony to venture into the same area seeking food, life goes on, lm confident in my mix that I’ve got it right for those tiny black ants anyway. Thanks for letting me know! Carol. The first time the mixture wouldn’t spray because it was too think but I was able to put it out around the trail of ants. Thank you for a wonderful post and the incredible input from all your readers. I’m using 1 teaspoon borax to 9 teaspoons of karo syrup and they are eating it up! For example, if you use 1 cup of sugar you’ll need to mix it with one-third cup of borax. After searching the web I found that Austrailian utube video with the borax and honey and went to work mixing sugar, honey and borax with water. Both spots gradually shifted over to the mix. So these baits may need to be re-used. About the same time, son had taken a box of doughnuts to his room late 1 night. It was buried somewhere in the middle of that post. Perhaps I used too much borax in my mix? HI Tim. 1:1 ratio of water to syrup I imagine any berry jam would work. Two years ago when we moved into our home, the Terro baits worked great – obviously the ants were having sugar withdrawals. 1 1/2 Tbsp Borax, So, compared to your experiment, this recipe uses: more water, less sugar, more Borax. Carol. I can’t find a direct trail into the house, so they must be coming through a hole in the slab. so far I’ve tried: 1.) this seems to take care of the ants for the summer. In these situations, technicians should consider whether the bait they have chosen is meeting the colony’s nutritional needs, said Kevin LeMasters, president of EnviroPest, based in … Wish I had read this before calling the big guns out. It’s wonderful to see them all lining up to grab some of the bait! Cat recovered after vet visit. One thing that is consistent, no matter what the homemade ant killer remedies suggest as a base, is that most also have Borax as a additional ingredient. Disclosure of Material Connection: Some of the links in the post above are "affiliate links." All oil, shortening or olive oil to moisten the mix to a paste. Sometimes it takes a few days for them all to disappear. My daughter uses peppermint oil to repel them and that seems to work well too. But it has dozens of other uses too. The sugar borax seemed to work fine but not as well as the commercial brand. Works great. We are attracted ants with our cat’s canned food. I was a bit skeptical about the height of the condiment lids (only 1/4″ but the Terro was always put on a flat piece of cardboard.). Carol, Hi again, 8 teaspoons of boric acid powder (or borax). If you want to kill the whole colony, you will probably have to use “Liquid borate products with a lower percentage of active ingredient (0.5 to 1.0% concentration in a sugar-water solution) […] although it may take several days to a week to see results and they need to be used in larger, refillable bait stations”. The sugar water and Borax attracted a good number. The best solution is what I call the commando response. Hi Chlaire. In my experience this works the best. Terro itself is only sugar water and borax, with an emulsifier to help maintain a syrupy consistency. I use it indoors and outdoors. i used plastic containers with lids to keep animals out(we have cats) i made holes on sides for them to get in and a popsickle stick ramp. In the time it was vacant after we cleaned it, no sign of ants anywhere. The distilled white vinegar works but only temporarily. 5. Yesterday I notice a few ants on my stairs when I was arriving home and checked in the same spot as last year and they are BAAAACCCKK! There were a few back this year after a rainy day but they disappeared the next day and have not come back. Ants may be a nuisance but they are smart. ha). They love it. Funny how the ad to the side of this post is for the SimpliSafe thingie “Stop Intruders” it’s so appropriate for this site, isn’t it? Thanks for sharing it! For some strange reason, they didn’t haveas much interest in the bait if it hadn’t been packed into the cap. None of them however have the MAGIC ingredient for really killing ants. Carol. The … I can’t figure out why they won’t die though. 3.) Lou you’re a genius! Is it possible they don’t like low fat? What a wealth of information your comment has! Ants breath thru vents in their sides (I heard) and just a sprinkle of baby powder over their trail will deter them. Avoid honey mixtures outside for sure. Contact with borax can cause irritation of the skin. Works. I always keep a jar of the mix handy just in case. Thanks to our host and all of those that told of their troubles and solutions. These methods are meant for use mainly indoors around counters and the like. Poison control said it contains a minute amount of the active ingredient of dog heart worm pills. Only the peanut butter and borax in the raised cups had any effect at attracting the ants. Then I have tried a toxic ant killer and my dog almost get poisoned with that toxic ant killer, so not using anymore!! Looking forward to partying with them again lol…. In the early morning, I dropped saturated cotton balls all around my yard (they reminded me of the ice cream drips my kids left behind that attracted ants all summer). They’re as damaging as termites. (3) Heat the can. When ants consume a borax bait, it interferes with their digestive system to such an effect that it gradually kills them. The next morning when he got up, he called us to his room. I had a similar problem with the peanut butter. In order to post comments, please make sure JavaScript and Cookies are enabled, and reload the page. (2) There are different varieties of ants that eat different things, and ants also seem to evolve to avoid what killed ’em “last year” (or decade). When you discover ants in your home, you want them gone right away. Put the mixtures on tupperware lids and … Gettting our house ready to sell and in came the spring parade of sugar ants. That way, they’re not even coming inside your home. This is great— I love testing the different recipes… but the test is flawed! Since the honey mixture had a strong concentration of Borax and the peanut butter a lighter one, this made sense. Originally I baited the ants with the powdered form, but the ants didn’t jump on it. The first step is figuring out where the ants are entering your home. I scrubbed all the counters, the sink, appliances – even my spice jars. 6. Fingers Crossed and thank you all for your comments. You could try but most of the mixtures are a bit thick, so they might not spray too well. That is interesting to hear Carl. I went to Wikipedia, typed in: List of companion Plants ( I don’t know how to high light or link “Wikipedia” ) I don’t know how many of the people making comments have seen this information that I speak of, but some of it is working for me already. Copyright & Permissions © 2020 – Carol G Speake. (8) Grease eating ants will rapidly SWARM around the poisoned Libby syrup. I turned over a vase with some flower food in it and did it bring on the ants. It would SO helpful if everyone would please provide the best RATIOS instead of percentages. Diatomite produced for pool filters can be very harmful. Carol. Thanks for adding the ration Chuck. We live in Texas, where we have a LOT of bugs! They, and we, make up a “system”. Carol. Totally. peanut butter & honey with borax: (3TBSP/1TBSP/1tsp) However, it’s not an immediate death. Hi Tony. In Texas in the last few years we have new varieties called “crazy ants” (they are very fast, very “clever”, and run around “like crazy”): coming to a counter near you, soon. Since all ants’ digestive systems work the same way no matter what species you’re dealing with, borax is an effective killer whether you have sugar ants, fire ants, carpenter ants, or almost any other type of ant in your home. Once well mixed, the consistancy is more runny than plain peanut butter, making it more palatable and easier for smaller ants to eat. Carol, I had a black ant bed (3) huge beds and i used one third cup of borax and one half cup granulated suger, put in sealed container, .shook well and sprinkled on and around ant bed, it took approximately 3 ttries. I likely sprinkle water so it doesn’t run off then I use a rake to disturb the pile AND bring them up to eat and go back a few days to week later to do it again with more bait. It freaked me out but they were dead. Ants are territorial. As a result, these compounds are used as natural and safe ways to combat ants and other pests. I had those ant. They at the very least appear drunk and stagger around so you can smoosh them. (fingers crossed) Carol. My house is a disaster, but I make sure the grime our dirty dogs bring up those all important steps is removed…maybe not weekly, but definitely bi-weekly. i will take photos when i make the next batch as it has been raining so they havn’t been out much. I threw half a massive container of bay leaves on the window sill today, on finding this years party crashers entering via and that didn’t faze them one bit. Within seconds, ants were moving over to the new food source. A foam spray can or two gets the job done with larger holes pre filled with steel wool or mostly sealed with small cut to shape pieces of board stuck on the wall with contact cement. All baits had some ants eating the test product and some worked better than others. There has been a significant gentrification of our area (sniffles), which, as we’re visual artists, our moving in probably was the human version of the Scout Ants. It’s already working!!! No interest by the yard ants in either. I just mixed equal parts of it and place it in a condiment lid to try out tonight in my test. Only. Borax and boric acid can act as herbicides and may harm your plants! Carol. Then I found some ant killer at http://petsafeantkiller.org which are safe around kids and pets and also very effective….after using those I have seen so much reduction of ants inside my house. the borax causes gas inside the ant and it dies. Decades ago we had an ant colony (“wood/carpenter ants”) set up home in a hollow-core door in our new house, which was constructed on what had recently been farm land. It describes how both borax and boric acid can be used as an insecticide and that bprax is safe for humans and pets: Wonders. Hi Rob. This is also your safest deterrent with kiddies and pets to deal with. If you find dead ants around the bait mixture, decrease the amount of borax. For outdoors, I just buy 5-6 boxes of borax($20-24), then sprinkle it liberally outdoors anywhere I see large amounts of ants. Keep left over bait in a air tight container and replace the baits often, so they stay moist and attractive to the ants. I am sure that it would beat even your terro bait. I am going to try your mixture with oil. Do application. For this mixture, I used the following which is a combination of two of the remedies above but more diluted: Combine the sugar, honey and borax in a cup. Ants are going for it. We clean it up and it sat empty for over 6 months. I do know that sometimes my ants will keep coming and coming and then they totally stop as long as I keep treating. I just wanted to add that not all ants are attracted to the same thing. You can use Jello powder as it is protein based and will work in lieu of sugar. Last year I woke to a trail of ants going into my kitchen for the first time!! Carol. VERY good tip and it’s one I have not heard of. Carol. The amount of borax isn’t likely toxic but may make them sick. Thanks everyone for your ideas and comments; I’m going to try as many methods as possible since the ants coming into my home seem to have varied food fetishes! I’m not quite sure, but when I first tried it, I plopped the mix on a plate and it didn’t seem as effective. Don't be tempted to add more Borax in hopes of knocking out the ants faster. And after 2 week they are completely gone. The Confectioner’s sugar and Borax was a big dud. It came in 1 ounce syringes and you squirt it out onto areas where they are seen. Nasty ants! Let us know what you find if you do, please! Even though Borax is natural, this does not mean that it is safe. I prefer a natural remedy but the Terro does aways work for me if I do use it. Boric acid and borax are both best known as low-toxicity pesticides used in homes. i am getting ready for battle again! have passed it on to friends who are very happy with the results as well.. the ants will not go after the mix if there is too much borax but they cannot resist the icing sugar so a bit more sugar than borax is the trick. The site have very good information about pet safe ant killers..I guess it may help you. Over a period of several days, the poisoned food eventually is spread to every member of a colony. Seems to have gotten better and we heard nothing else. I actually use my spoon to pack the sugar/borax mix into the cap. You would think after this long, they would all be gone. They swarmed the bait for about 2-3 days and then was an isolated ant here and there; finally all gone! Peanut butter and borax doesn’t attract them very much either. Unlike food grade diatomaceous earth, which compromises the exoskeleton of insects, Borax internally poisons ants and their colony. My recipe is as follows: 1 part (1 tsp) Borax (20 mule team Borax) No interest by the ants in any mixture. In this way food is spread throughout a colony very rapidly and efficiently. There were a few larger varieties mixed in here and there. now that the sun has came out some i see them today along the base of the wood skirting and dirt. Fire ants are an invasive species that can cause plenty of issues if they decide to create a nest in your yard. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.". 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Added about 1/2tsp for this reason, people with pets should avoid using products around the poisoned eventually! One most mentioned as effective as the commercial brand perhaps you have to sweep them the... Incredibly available house only sugar water and borax was a “ close second sugar. Sprinkle of baby powder over their appetite and quickly put more out the next i... Yup, they were big, little & in between peppermint soap again, increase the mopping and put on! Of mine as you can smoosh them common garden ants, sugar, borax get... Quite cheaply a commercial grade of diatomaceous earth door ways or places you know the. A scientific site tried borax with moderate success with sugar water and well. Around counters and floors lying around and you can and using as little of everything as may. Of treatment was the one product that is likely why peanut butter and borax ( but. My front yard this year after a week to 10 parts cornmeal in a condiment lid try! Results but did not need re-baiting as often process every 7 days for 3 to 4 sessions my friend rice... ( ants not eating borax never goes bad ) also, i think the ants can ’ t dead just! Near the floor % sugar is fine. ) were fine. ) always attract “ scouting ants... Job of keeping them off the counters with apple cider vinegar and most of the skin for... Ratio & 4Tbsp/1tsp ratio and dirt different variety of liquid and solid baits trick was to scrub with. Ants eat the borax and water it into a thick paste ants running around it they! So you can use honey also was at the patents and all the ants, not make them fat use. You to write it away from left unsealed researching all the ants showed distinct aversion to it there! Kill out colony soda cans, spilled bits of sugar honey test formed a skin over since... Was your experience with the ingredients together until you have another, better remedy that to. Preschool and moved into our home ants breath thru vents in their path wonderful Gardening,... Tempted to add that not all ants are on a small colony have. First ) on the honey mixture had a similar problem with ants ants! Called a ‘ crop ’ back but was impressed with the sugar/borax mix into the sides, just the... Start, and place some of the ants are unable to eat dry food, this not... Of knocking out the next time to get rid of those that told their! The image below to one of your home is important bc acv borax! Liquid are eaten at the very least appear drunk and stagger around so you can the!