As much as we all dislike pests, most of us are leery of spraying chemicals around our homes as a means to get rid of them. Instead, here are some non-toxic, homemade remedies to send those invasive insects packing.
Before you start trying to get rid of any pest, though, take the obvious first step—remove any attractants that are keeping them around. This includes food residue, open food sources, and any standing or dripping water.
Roaches are known as one of the most determinedly difficult insects to eliminate.
Try spreading bay leaves around the house, or get a hold of some hedgeapples—the fruit of the Osage Orange tree—and leave one in every room in the house.
Catnip—for homes without cats—serves as an excellent roach repellant. To create an anti-roach solution, simmer catnip in water and then spray it around the house. Again, if you have a cat, it would be best not to use this technique!
For ant problems, try leaving bags of mint tea, cloves, or crushed mint leaves in high-activity areas. If you can track down the ants' point of entry into your home, create a "fence" of cinnamon, coffee grounds, or cayenne pepper. Sprinkling any of these in a small line around the entry will create a barrier the colony won't cross.
Leaving cloth scraps with a few drops of eucalyptus oil on them will keep flies away in problematic areas. Like ants, flies hate mint and cloves, so leaving some around the house will serve double duty in the fight on critters.
Keep a spray bottle of soapy water around for insect sightings too—a well-aimed shot or two will dispatch them handily. For information on repelling other species of insect pests, visit eartheasy.com
Until next time,
The Home Know-It-All