If there’s anything stopping a lawn from being picture-perfect it is ant mounds. Ants play an important role in our ecosystem. They aerate the soil, pollinate seeds, and prey on pests like termites and ticks. But ants can quickly take over sections of your grass, and if you have pets or kids, you’ll want to know how to get rid of ants in grass naturally.
There are natural alternatives to getting rid of ants without posing a risk to pets and children. In fact, you may have some ingredients lying around in your home.
In this article I’ll share some natural solutions for removing ants from your lawn. Let’s get started!
Soap and water is a classic, natural method to get rid of ants. There are several recipes to make soapy water. Some recipes call for apple cider vinegar, baking soda, and peppermint oil. You’re more than welcome to explore the benefits of these ingredients. But eco-friendly soap and tap water do the job fine.
To create 2% insecticide spray, mix 1 heaping tablespoon of soap to 1 quart of water. After you combine the mixture, funnel the liquid into a spray bottle. Liberally spray the soapy water on any visible ant trails, plants, or around the ant colony. The mixture breaks down ants’ natural resistance to water. As a result, the liquid gets rid of ants. Soapy water also eliminates their chemical trail used to communicate with other ants.
If you want to eliminate ant hills, pour the soapy water inside the ant mound to kill ants.
Use caution, though – too much dish soap kills grass.
Diatomaceous earth (DE) is a food-grade material which is the ground fossilized skeletons of diatoms, or microscopic algae. It’s sharp enough to kill ants when they walk across it, but won’t harm people (some people actually eat it!).
Besides eliminating ants, plants benefit from DE’s nutrients. Since DE is mineral-based, it contains potassium, magnesium, calcium … all nutrients which will nourish your lawn.
If you’re wondering how to get rid of ants in grass naturally, Diatomaceous Earth is a great, low-cost solution that’s safe for your kids and pets.
Sprinkle food-grade DE on ant trails and around anthills. You can also pour DE inside the ant mound. DE particles penetrate through an ant’s waxy layer and absorb their moisture. It may take a few days, but the DE dehydrates ants. DE can also remove unwanted pests like cockroaches, bedbugs, and fleas.
There are two kinds of DE food-grade and industrial-grade. Food-grade DE is for human consumption so it is safe to use around children and pets. Industrial-grade DE is applied to pool filters and should not be used in place of food-grade DE. This one on Amazon comes with a duster, which makes applying it to anthills fool-proof.
Mix equal parts white vinegar to water and spray on ant-infested areas. Ants’ bodies cannot withstand the acidity. As a result, the acidic in vinegar gets rid of ants. Another method is to pour the mixture inside the anthill.
Vinegar is a safe alternative to getting rid of ants but it may kill vegetation along the way. The acidity can damage your plant’s topsoil so if you use this method, do so cautiously.
Chili or Cayenne Pepper
To exterminate ants, surround the ant mound with chili or cayenne pepper.
Some homeowners mix chili or cayenne pepper with coffee grounds to make the repellent more efficient. But, the coffee ground’s effectiveness in getting rid of ants is yet to be proven. While this is a natural alternative to repelling ants, avoid pets from digesting the pepper.
Chili or Cayenne pepper mixed with water repel ants. The mixture masks ants’ trail and can be poured inside the ant mound.
This pantry item eliminates ants but excessive amounts of cinnamon can kill plants. To create a natural pest repellent, mix a few drops of cinnamon oil in water. If you don’t have cinnamon oil, ground cinnamon or cloves should do the trick. It may not be as effective as cinnamon oil, but it should do the trick.
Ants breathe through pores in their exoskeleton called spiracles. The fine particles in baby powder clog ants spiracles. Once clogged by small powder, it deprives ants of oxygen.
Homeowners can get rid of ants in their lawn by sprinkling baby powder where ants are present to eliminate them.
If you do not have baby powder, baking soda can work as well. You can pick up either option the next time you go grocery shopping.
A common pantry item, salt is used to eliminate ants. Since salt is a desiccant, it dehydrates ants’ exoskeleton. As a result, the ants die from dehydration. Homeowners can spray a strong mixture of salt and water on ant trails or poured in ant holes.
Avoid spraying large amounts of your homemade saltwater solution. An excess of salt water can kill vegetation and plants.
This method deprives ants of food sources. If you see ant trails leading to your compost pile, trash bins, or organic waste then consider moving them away from your lawn.
If this is not possible, then deter the ants away from these areas with a natural remedy like soapy water or salt. This will strip ants from their food source, eventually killing them.
Now You Know How to Get Rid of Ants in Grass Naturally
While ants play an important role in your lawn’s ecosystem, they can be a nuisance. Especially if your yard experiences recurring ant mounds or the little pests eat your vegetation.
Now that you know how to get rid of ants in grass naturally, you can rest easy knowing that the ants will be gone without applying a harmful insecticide that could put children, pests, and pollinators at risk.
And if the solutions above have not worked, check out my article about the best lawn ant killers (with tips for safe use and application).