If ants brazenly nest in the lawn, the siege quickly degenerates into an ant plague. At the latest when ant nests reach the height of molehills, we want to put a stop to the invasion. Read the 10 best tips for non-toxic ant control here.
Tip 1: Relocate ant nests – the gentle way
An insect-friendly gardener does not condemn busy ants to death just because they have settled on the lawn. Instead, ant control aims to motivate the insects to move to another shelter. However, this endeavor is only crowned with success if the queen joins her people. This is how the plan works:
- Fill a large clay bucket with wood shavings
- Set this upside down so that it covers the resulting hill
- Alternatively, set up overhead in close proximity to an ant nest
Now give the ants a few days to move. Long rows of workers carrying the offspring into the pot are a sure sign of success. As soon as the caravan is finished, take a spade, push it under the pot and carry the ants to a safe place.
Tip 2: Annoy with smells – This is how it works
Ants are equipped with a sensitive sense of smell, which is primarily used for orientation. With intense smells, this perception is so paralyzed that the Hymenoptera, full of disgust, flee.
In this way, the plague of ants in the lawn quickly comes to an end without having to bring out the chemical mace. These fragrances promise maximum success:
- garlic broth
- A mixture of camphor and alcohol
- Cheap perfume
- Japanese healing plant oil
If ant nests are repeatedly sprayed with these liquids, the workers pack their bags and the whole colony moves out. A similar effect was achieved by ethereal herbs, which have proven their worth in natural ant control.
If you lay out eucalyptus, anise, sage, lemon balm, lavender, and similar herbs around the ant nests, the ant plague will soon be history.
Tip 3: Activate natural opponents
If the ant plague gets the upper hand in the lawn, knowledgeable gardeners get help from the predators of the pests. The following garden animals like to eat ants:
- Birds of all kinds, especially the green woodpecker
- Beetles, like the vine weevil
- be crazy
One of the most dangerous enemies for ants is the antlion. The clever antlion catches the crawling creatures with a self-made funnel trap on fine-grained sand. All these beneficial insects like to settle in the natural garden. Therefore, create retreats such as drywall, dense hedges, rotten tree trunks, or piles of leaves
Tip 4: End the ant plague with non-toxic nematodes
Natural opponents of a special kind have included ants in their prey scheme for millions of years. We are talking about nematodes, tiny roundworms that have been discovered in fossil workers.
In modern ant control, the nematodes of the Mermis genus are applied to the ant nests as a non-toxic preparation, where they get rid of the ant plague.
Tip 5: Disrupt orientation with vinegar and tea tree oil
Efficient ant nests depend on the workers always finding their way back there, laden with food for the brood. For this purpose, the insects mark the routes with endogenous scents. The ants are doomed if these scents are masked. Vinegar is ideal for this purpose, as is the somewhat milder tea tree oil.
Spraying the paths towards the lawn and ant nests with vinegar water or diluted tea tree oil every few days will end the ant plague in no time at all. It is important to note that you do not spray the liquid directly onto the grass.
Tip 6: Take action against ant plagues with baking soda
Baking soda has earned a good reputation in ant control. However, baking soda alone has no effect against the ant plague. Only in combination with sugar do you draw a line under the ant plague. Scattered repeatedly on the ant nests, the pests eat the mixture and die with the released ammonia.
Tip 7: Catching ants with beer – this is how it works
Best known as an effective remedy against voracious snails, the beer trap also lives up to expectations against an ant infestation in the lawn. How to do it right:
- Fill a flat plate with stale beer
- Mix in a tablespoon of honey
- Set up in the immediate vicinity of the ant nests
Craving sweets, the ants crawl into the plate and drown in the alcoholic liquid.
Tip 8: Consistently disturb ant nests as part of lawn care
In view of the swarming around ant nests, it is surprising, but the pests actually want to be left in peace. Regular lawn care is therefore a tried and tested means of making it as uncomfortable as possible for the creepy-crawlies. How to get rid of ants by disturbing the peace:
- Mow every 7-10 days from April to September
- Before mowing the lawn, level the mounds of ant nests
- Always include the burrow in the summer lawn
Incidentally, the annual maintenance liming of the lawn not only prevents acidification of the soil; at the same time, ants will be careful not to build a new den in a whitewashed lawn.
Tip 9: Fighting ants with plant manure – a guide
Frowned upon in domestic ant control, the stench of plant manure is a lasting attack on an ant plague in the lawn. You can easily make nettle manure yourself to spray ant nests with it until the beasts leave. Using the following recipe, you can not only make nettle manure yourself, but also other mixtures, such as wormwood or comfrey stock:
- Soak 1 kilogram (2.5 pounds) of fresh nettle leaves in 10 liters (2.6 gallons) of water
- Place in a sunny garden area and cover with chicken wire.
- Infuse in a wooden vat for 14 days, stirring daily
After the fermentation process is complete, the liquid manure is strained and is immediately ready for use. Diluted in a ratio of 1:10, spray the ant nests in the lawn repeatedly. Involve the entire lawn and fertilize the green in a natural way at the same time.
Tip 10: Aphids drives away ants – here’s how
Where aphids romp on plants, ants are not far away. It is the honeydew that the pests excrete that attracts the ants. Ant control, therefore, goes hand in hand with controlling lice in the garden.
If you are confronted with an ant plague in your lawn, deprive the insects of their food base by taking the following action against aphids:
- Spray with a mix of 1 liter (0.26 gallons) of water and 15 ml each of curd soap
- Pollinate plants repeatedly with pure charcoal ash or rock dust
- Cook a broth from 3 cloves of garlic and 1 liter (0.26 gallons) of water and treat the plants
In addition, the specialist trade has pesticides based on neem or rapeseed oil, which have proven to be effective against aphids and thus also make the garden unattractive for ants.