Spring is a wonderful time of year: the birds are singing, flowers are in bloom and Mother Nature is putting on a beautiful show. It is also the time when so-called pests that were somewhat dormant during the cold, winter months are beginning to show up in full force. If you have noticed a sudden influx of ants, flies, spiders, fruit flies, fleas or other pests at your home or office, we’ve found a number of natural, biofriendly pest control remedies you may want to try out.
1 – Mint and Basil plants: Mint and basil plants have been known for helping to keep unwanted flies at bay. If you have outdoor patio areas you want to remain free of flies, plant basil around or place a potted basil plant on the table. It will help keep flies away. You can even make small satchels with leaves in them and place them around the house. Your home will smell better and the flies will stay away.
2 – Cinnamon, paprika, cayenne or cucumbers: As you may or may not realize, ants leave a scented trail which is intended to guide more ants to a source of food. If you wash away or block their tracks regularly, you will begin to see less and less ants frequenting your home.
Cinnamon, paprika, cayenne pepper and cucumbers (especially cucumber peels) are all good for deterring ants. Ants also hate peppermint and spearmint. Sprinkling cinnamon or cayenne around the outside of your windows, base of your home or across known ant trails works well, as does placing pieces of cucumber or cucumber peels in areas where ants have been known to gather. Ants apparently do not like the taste of cucumber, so if you want them to leave, cucumber might just do the trick. You can also grow mint around your home or patio to keep ants away. You can even make a DIY ant repellent by mixing ten parts water and one part peppermint oil and using it to spray around windows and doors.
3 – Vinegar-based cleaner: Vinegar-based cleaners are another way you can remove the invisible tracks ants leave behind. All you need to do is add about 1/4 cup vinegar, 2 cups water, and between 10-15 drops of clove, eucalyptus, peppermint or tea tree essential oil to a spray bottle. Then spray and wipe away trails ants have used to get into your home. Spiders cannot stand the smell of peppermint or vinegar, so if you are having a problem with spiders, you might want to opt for a peppermint-based vinegar spray cleaner.
4 – Rosemary: For those of you who have pets, grounding up rosemary leaves into a fine powder and placing that powder on your pet, in their bedding and all over their favorite toys can help deter fleas. Cedar and other essential oils have been known to accomplish the same results. Combine the two for a one-two punch: bathe your dog in a cedar oil shampoo, followed by the rosemary leaves powder and the fleas won’t want any part of it.
5 – Eucalyptus or lemon eucalyptus: Both eucalyptus and lemon eucalyptus can be used to deter mosquitoes. According to Healthline, “The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has even approved eucalyptus oil as an effective mosquito repellent. ” A 32 percent lemon eucalyptus oil mixture can allegedly provide a 95 percent protection from mosquitoes for up to three hours.
6 – Citrus peels: Rubbing citrus peels along window sills, baseboards, door frames and any other openings into your home is a natural way to help deter spiders. Spiders do not like citrus, so rather than throwing those peels away, you can use them to keep your place free of unwanted spiders and other pests. A spray made of citrus peels can have its benefits.
7 – Flowers known to provide natural pest control: If you are looking to get rid of some common garden pests, Organic Authority recommends planting any of these 5 flowers in and around your garden or yard: borage, chrysanthemums, clover, lavender and marigolds.
Of course many insects and other pests are attracted to water and food, so keeping your house clean, garbage emptied regularly and food containers closed up tight will only help. If you’ve got a favorite natural and biofriendly pest control remedy, please leave a comment to let us know. We’d love to hear it!