How to deter household pests, the environmentally friendly way
Obviously the best way to discourage pests moving into your home is by keeping it clean, tidy, rubbish free, vacuuming and dusting frequently.
But if you have unwanted little critters in your home, we have some environmentally friendly options for you to use as an alternative to insecticides.
Ants – to deter
Spray shelves and surfaces with pennyroyal oil in a little water, or rub directly undiluted.
Cut a lemon and place in cupboard corners
Place ground cloves in cupboard corners
Place cucumber ends near the area
A few drops of eucalyptus oil near the area
Arrange peppermint or spearmint leaves near the area
To kill them
Combine the following ingredients
60g boracic acid
Place in a pot and heat to make a syrup. Then get a plastic soft drink / soda bottle with a lid, soak cotton wool in the syrup and put them through the top, put the lid on a cut a hole in the side of the bottle for the ants to enter as they pass by.
Mice – to deter
Ensure all food is packed in metal or glass containers.
Place pots of mint in the kitchen
Hang mint or tansy in the kitchen cupboards
Oil of peppermint rubbed around the places you think the mice may live.
To kill them
Use traps, mice love cheese, peanut butter, bacon, rats love Brazil nuts. Remember to check your traps regularly to get rid of any dead mice or rats.
Cockroaches – to deter
Sprinkle pyrethrum powder or oil around where they have invaded
Put cucumber ends in the cupboards, leave them until they are dried up, and then replace them with new.
Dust boracic acid in cupboards
Mix powdered borax and sugar and sprinkle around the refrigerator and stove oven
Use a soft drink / soda bottle with a hole cut in it for the cockroaches to enter, place 5% Borax in sugar in the bottle.
Wipe eucalyptus oil around cupboards
Soak a rag in beer and leave out over night in a shallow dish.
Flies – to deter
Leave bay leaves on the windowsill
Leave crushed mint out on the bench
Camphor tablets can be positioned by rubbish / garbage bins.
Hang leaves or place in a vase, lavender, pennyroyal or rue, rub often to release the scent.
A pot of growing basil in the kitchen
Small pots of tansy
To catch flies make sticky honey paper! Take some yellow paper and spread with honey.
Or run around the house with a fly swat.
Mosquitoes – to deter
Ensure you have no still water around your home outside as they breed in water.
Natural repellants for your body, baby oil, citronella, castor oil or lavender oil rubbed on the skin. (Check bottle for correct amounts).
To repel use citronella or pyrethrum candles, mosquito nets or coils.
Mosquitoes don’t like basil, so grow the herb in pots and place strategically.
Written by Lee Brown