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How to Get Rid of Ants in the Kitchen

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    LESLIE: Ron in Kentucky is dealing with some ants. Tell us about the problem. And it’s not like your mom’s sister, right?

    RON: No. No, I’ve got problems with ants, like on my kitchen counter and I just can’t get rid of them. I’ve tried spray, I’ve tried the little ant baits and I just can’t get rid of them.

    TOM: Do you want a natural solution or a nuclear solution?

    RON: Whatever works. I’m open for suggestion.

    TOM: Well, first of all, on the natural side, you can do something like, for example, planting mint around your foundation perimeter is a pretty big ant-deterrent. And mint grows really quickly and it smells nice and the ants hate it. So, that’s something that will deter ants from coming in.

    Once they get into the countertop, what’s good for that? Bay leaves, right, Leslie?

    LESLIE: Bay leaves, yeah. You can take, you know, little canisters of bay leaves and just sort of place them just loosely in pots around your countertop. Or if they’re coming in through a windowsill, you can even crush up some of the – in a spice section, bay leaves, the dried ones. Crush them up and drape that – some of – across your windowsill. For some reason, they hate that, as well.

    TOM: Now, if you want a pesticide that can take care of ants, there’s a number of them that are out there that are non-detectable, in the sense that once they’re applied to, usually, the foundation perimeter, the ants will walk through them and get the insecticide on the ant. And since they’re social insects, they take them back to the colony, pass it to the rest of the ants and that wipes them out. And that’s something that would have to be applied, though, by a pro.

    And that said, they’re very effective, so I always recommend pros over do-it-yourself pesticides, because I think that people tend to over-apply the do-it-yourself pesticides and actually give themselves more exposure to those chemicals than they would – that they would have had if they had a pro do it from the get-go. Does that make sense?

    RON: OK. Thank you very much.

    TOM: You’re welcome, Ron. Thanks so much for calling us at 888-MONEY-PIT.

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