Ants that live underground make massive palaces for themselves. Each ‘palace’ has a diverse tunnel system. The corridors of these homes are constructed by mining out the soil which they carry to the surface. It is why, at times, we come across large, unsightly mounds of sediment smack in the middle of our manicured lawns. They are evidence of an ant colony. A breeding queen rules these extensive colonies or homes.
Why & How To Get Rid Of Ant Mounds In Lawn?
Some ants cause painful bites to both us and our pets such as the Solenopsis Invicta aka the red imported fire ant. To eliminate this risk they pose to us, ant colonies need to be done away. But time and patience are necessary to get rid of ant colonies as they are like icebergs. We get to see only the tip. You may destroy the visible fraction of the population, but the queen still keeps laying eggs and replenishing it. In here, we give you the mightiest weapon against ants– a long-term and complete guide to killing them.
Different Methods To Kill Underground Ant Colony
To kill ants under patio or lawn or anywhere they might set up camp, one can use a numerous techniques. We begin by first explaining the natural ways to get rid of an underground ant nest using liquids.
Water and ants don’t mix. So to keep ants away, keep your lawn well watered. If you see an ant hill, pour water over it. It will flush out and kill the entire colony including the precious queen. It is one of the easiest and healthiest ways to get rid of ant hills permanently.
- An alternative to regular water is boiling water. Pour it directly on an ant hill to kill most of the ants. Be careful not to burn yourself while utilizing this method.
- You could also mix dish soap in the boiling water and then dump it on the ant colony. A more effective approach is to decant the soapy hot water on the hill’s main entrance. Repeat the procedure 3 times a day. After the 3rd time, sprinkle boric acid around the colony. “Boric acid is dangerous to ants as it draws out water from ant’s body and dehydrates them to death.” This will wholly eradicate the ant infestation.
This home remedy works wonders when poured on the ant mound and inside the ground. It kills the ants but doesn’t affect the plants or the soil.
When vinegar is not at hand, use lemon juice. The citric acid present in it kills the ants. Fill a spray bottle with the liquid and then spread it on the ant hill and anywhere else you see ants. Repeat it twice a day to remove the whole colony along with the queen. You can use the juice inside or outside your home.
Club soda can knock out an entire ant pile thanks to the CO2 present in it. The carbon dioxide removes all the oxygen inside the settlement and suffocates the queen along with the workers.
Bleach & Ammonia:
For those who want immediate results, mix bleach with ammonia and tip it over the hill. The two components should be 50-50. Within minutes the ant colony will wither away. Just be careful while handling the mixture as it not only burns the skin but is also harmful to breathe in. Wear gloves and a mask for protection.
Killing Ants Under Pavers Through Solid Home Remedies
Up-till now we made use of fluids to get rid of ant homes. We now describe some solid substances that can be used to kill ant colonies under pavers, patios or lawns. They can be mixed with water or used as is.
Salt dries out the exoskeletons of ants as it is a desiccant. It is cheap. It can be found readily at home. Hence, it makes for a proper remedy. Mix a generous amount of salt in water and spray it on the ant mount. When used along with excellent home cleaning practices, it defeats ants. But salt has some drawbacks:
- A lot of it needs to be used.
- It causes corrosion of surfaces. Wall paint, floor finish and metal fixtures get tarnished when salt collects on them.
- Grass and plants that are sensitive also get affected by salt.
Like plain water, coffee ground is a safe method to kill ants. All it takes to eradicate the entire colony is to spread it on the ant mound. The only issue is that it takes some time to kill all ants – newly hatched and old ones.
Soak pipe tobacco in water for a night to create a tea-like substance. Bin the wet tobacco and pour the tobacco-water on the ant colony. The anthill should be utterly soaked with the ‘tea’ to make sure that all ants die. Additionally, use this technique only for outdoor infestations and wear gloves while handling the mixture.
Powder or Glue:
Holes, ant hill entrances, trails can be filled with either glue or baby powder to kill ants.
Using Ant Baits To Kill Ants Under Driveway
As we said, ant hills are like icebergs. We see a teeny, tiny part of them. It is why killing them is such hard work. When home remedies don’t work, you can use ant baits. The bait is based on the feeding behavior of the ant. For example, “fire, pharaoh, pyramid and thief ants, prefer oily foods and fats” while others like sweet things.
Some Key Points While Baiting
- Never place the bait on the ant trail. It will upset their chemical trail.
- Ant baits need time to work in reducing ant population.
- Regularly check the baits.
- Refill the baits as needed.
All Kinds Of Baits
Make a paste of sugar and boric acid. For one cup of food use one tablespoon boric acid. Spill pieces of the dough near the ant hill and the trail to wipe out the colony. You can also use any greasy food substance instead of sugar.
Take a plastic baggie or a discarded salt shaker. Add ½ powdered sugar and ½ baking soda in it. Shake it well and then sprinkle the mixture on the ant mound, around your home, and near the plants. When the ants eat the mix, the sugar and soda combine to produce CO2 which then causes a full-body explosion. This solution also acts as a physical barrier to the ants.
Cornmeal works similar to baking soda. It forms a boundary for ants plus it is indigestible to them which leads to death by malnutrition. Sprinkle the cornmeal around, and near the ant mound. In 3 to 4 days the colony will be disposed-off.
Karo Syrup & Borax
Add a tiny amount of borax to a goodly amount of Karo Syrup. Heat the mixture so that the two dissolve together. Now pour the solution inside an ant hill by making a crack. Within a week the workers would have taken the bait to the queen resulting in complete disposal of the colony.
Fill in holes and entrances to anthills with grits, like you would with glue or baby powder. The ants eat the bait which then expands in their stomachs and causes an explosion. Moreover, when they come out looking for water, the filled in holes will hinder them. You can buy a can of grits anywhere. It is cheap and eco-friendly.
How To Get Rid Of Ant Hill Under House – One Time Effort
Baits work so well because worker ants eat them and take the same to the queen. This wipes out entire colonies, but they need time to function. If you are looking for a quicker a solution, here are some other efficient mediums you can use.
Add DE to the anthill and soil around the colony by breaking up the ground and slowly mixing DE to it. Use a generous coating of DE and cover at least one-foot radius of the surface with the ant hill as the center. When the ants touch the DE mixed soil, it will “absorb moisture from their exoskeletons.” It is this mechanical process of dehydration that kills the ants.
These should be utilized as the last remedy because they harm not only the environment but also insects that are beneficial to us. There are two ways to use insecticides to get rid of ants in your garden or lawn.
Liquid Insecticide: Make the visible surface of the anthill flat by removing all material. Next make holes in the ground using either a metal rod or a wooden dowel. Go as deep as you can. Now pour the insecticide into each hole. Cover the entire holed-out section of the lawn with a thatch.
Solid Insecticide: take a powder based insecticide like bifenthrin and make a solution using the instructions given on the container.
- Use a garden sprayer or watering can to keep the mixture.
- Drench the ant mound and hill with the mixture. You would need about 1 to 2 gallons per mound.
- Take the left-over dry powder and sprinkle it over the mound. Read the directions for proper application. If you have a fire ants infestation, then use an insecticide that contains: “acephate, deltamethrin or cyfluthrin.”
- You can also add diazinon granules to the top of the mound. To do so rake it flat, sprinkle the granules as directed by the label and then rake again. Spray the hill with water to settle it.
These are easier to use than insecticides. Directly buy a can of commercial ant killer and spray a single line of it “around the base of your house.” This deters the ants from entering the home. To get rid of an ant hill, squirt the pesticide on it, the visible ant trail, the holes, and the surrounding ground. In less than an hour, the colony will be dead. Keep these essentials in mind while using the can:
- Do not use it on a windy day.
- Do not use it if it is going to rain within a day.
- Always keep the nozzle away from you and in the opposite direction.
Last Tip – Don’t Make Dumb Moves
It bears repeating – we see only a minuscule part of the ant population. Most of it is hidden away underground. They keep working and serving the colony. Any dumb moves you make will cause the settlement to split and increase the infestation. It is the death of the queen that “puts an end to any chances of ants surviving.” So make your top priority to kill the underground ant colony, where the queen resides.