Natural pest control solutions after a mild winter

by Jessica Breger
Staff writer

This past winter brought Southern Oklahoma little snow and no freeze. While we may have enjoyed the mild weather then, we are paying for it this summer.

With no winter freeze to kill insects, the summer is sure to bring a lot of unwelcome and potentially dangerous guests into our homes.

Many of us do not wish to use chemicals in our homes to combat the summer pest problems while others simply do not have the money.

Fortunately, there are ways to combat the pests without expensive chemicals.

If cockroaches are your problem, try spraying them with a dish soap and water mixture. This kills them instantly.

This mixture also helps keep spiders at bay if sprayed in all nooks and crannies once a month.

According to a book by Dr. Myles H. Bader called “1001 All-Natural Secrets to Pest Control,” 1 tablespoon of Ivory Liquid Soap mixed with 1 quart of water will do the same to cockroaches because “they hate to be clean.”

Dr. Bader’s book also suggests using a shallow bowl of equal parts powdered sugar and baking soda.

You can also use hot sauce to kill them. This method is not recommended for families with small children as the children may be inclined to put the hot sauce in their mouths.

More natural remedies for cockroaches include catnip, bay leaves or cucumber peals spread throughout your house. They act as repellents for cockroaches.

One other solution, if you like lizards, is to let a gecko loose in your house. According to local resident Ashlea Sears, a gecko may be able to eat all of the cockroaches within seven to ten days.

For fleas, many natural solutions have been found. You can make a solution by boiling peppermint, lemon or a citrus rind in a few cups of water.

Spray your pet and yard with the solution. These scents are highly effective in keeping fleas at bay.

Ants, too, become a major problem in the summer months. It’s a good thing most of the solutions to ant problems are cheap and natural.

All ant solutions should be applied to window seals, door frames, pantry corners and any other places ants tend to gather in your home.

These solutions include vinegar, salt, dried bay leaves, dried peppermint or peppermint oil and my personal favorite, cinnamon powder.

I once had an ant problem so extreme that they had gotten into my bedding and clothing. I was told to use cinnamon.

I sprinkled the cinnamon on my window seal, on my box spring and in my doorframe. I may have gone overboard when I poured the rest of the bottle on the large anthill outside of my bedroom.

The point is that I never saw another ant at that house for the remaining three years I lived there.

I haven’t found a successful way to combat wasps or bees except for with smoke. If you live somewhere that allows you to have a nightly fire, you are set.

There are, however, ways to relieve the stings if they get the best of you.

My favorite remedy is to make a paste from baking soda and water. Apply the solution to the sting. This will pull the stinger out if it was left in your skin and will sooth the irritated skin.

Loose tobacco from a cigarette or dip can also pull the stinger out. Tobacco does not have the same soothing quality as baking soda, however.

While there are several products made to combat pests, these solutions may save you money and are environment- and family-friendly.

Try any of these in your home without fear of chemical residue and without breaking the bank.


47 thoughts on “Natural pest control solutions after a mild winter

  1. To take the instant swelling and sting out a wasps or bee sting …wet area and sprinkle meat tenderizer ..great to take on camping trips ..I have seen this work..something about breaking the enzymes down..

      • Bleach will only kill on contact. Best to do the following:

        1. declutter
        2. Launder and tumble dry everything possible at high temperatures
        3. Vacuum everything
        4. Use a good steam cleaner which give off dry vapor and can reach at least 120oC.
        5. Put down crawling insect powder or a non toxic residual bed bug spray.

  2. to get ride of wasp or bees use a rag that has been wet with kerosene
    place close to opening of nest at night
    they will be gone in a day

    • Alcohol method is the factest and easiest outside of qwell shampoo.
      1. Purchase a bottle of rubbing alcohol.

      2. end back over a bathtub.

      3. Center the alcohol bottle over the middle of the forehead a little bit away from the hairline.

      4. Pour the alcohol over the hair and make sure you get all of it wet. A stinging sensation is expected.

      5. Run your fingers through the hair and make sure the alcohol covers the scalp.

      6. Take some conditioner and rub that into the scalp, then take a long-toothed comb and brush out all the lice. This should take about an hour to get everything out.

      7. Take a shower and scrub the hair very well. Shampoo twice, then condition.

  3. Stink Bugs – 32 ounces of hot water in a spray bottle and three-quarters of a cup of dishwashing Liquid and spray the outside of your house, concentrate on the cracks, windows and doors. Make sure all doors and windows are properly sealed, and that protective screens are in place over air vents and chimneys. This should stop them getting in.

  4. I know most wood bees, since they were in the fascia boards, maybe even bumble bees, but I don’t know the difference, don’t like Bounce dryer sheets. Hang them loosely or tape a small corner to a door, etc., wherever you are so they can aerate, especially around doors and windows that are opened without screens. If they get wet, replace them. If they loose too much aroma, replace them.

  5. How do you get rid of mice in the walls. They’re no where else in the house or basement, just a few of the walls, they visit in the middle of the night. Grrrr. Plz help

    • Call your local pest control company. We had a similar problem in our stone foundationed Victorian – the mice and insects come in through the basement. No problem now – we now have twice-yearly pest control and the mice, roaches, and ants don’t visit us anymore.

  6. How do you get rid of centipedes? I cannot stand these bugs. As soon as summer comes around they seem to come upstairs from our basement. Help!!!

  7. I’m unable to find Ivory dish soap to use against roaches. What other brands will work?
    Does this work on other bugs as well?
    Thank you!

  8. I have tryed every solution in Dr Baders both books for ant control outside.Nothing worked.I even bought every kind of mint plant,lemon grass ants climbing through the mint and the grass.Catnip ants in the pot.Tansey ants in that pot also/Ants dont bother me its the aphids that follow and eat the juices from the ants,as you all know.Im so very upset because I have invested alot of money in my plants to try and sell them.Desert roses,Plumerias and I only make 781.00 a month on disability.Im very upset when I tryed Dr.Baders natural solutions none of them worked.I havent even finished paying for the books yet.Beer and coke in a compost bin?Im so stupid I did it and the nursery I deal with said I was nuts ants go after soda pop.So now my whole compost bin is full of these red ants that dont bite.So I cant use that because every plant will have eaten up leaves from the aphids.What am I suppose to do now Dr Bader?

    • This works I swear by it mix 1 cup sugar 3 tablespoon borax powder which u usally find in laundry aisle 1/2 cup water mix real good dip cotton balls in the mix and set them around where u have ants the sugar attracts them and the borax kills them but they first carry it back to the nest and it kills all of them I do this every season and I see the ants the first day then that’s it

    • I have had great success getting rid of ants using johnsons baby powder sprinkle where you see ants. Cinnamon also works well. Good luck.

  9. I have heard that eradicating smaller insects will in turn, get rid of centipedes. Since centipedes feast on smaller insects, you can essentially starve them out by getting rid of ants and such. I haven’t tested this theory, but maybe it will help.

    • I never in my entire 40 + years had any bugs in my home until my teenagers took a friend in and the 10 months he stayed destroyed my bug free world. i have since been fighting a never ending battle against roaches.. but I did manage to get rid of the fleas.they tend to build an immunity to using one thing all the time switch off and on when shampooing pets. Ivory clear and dawn. then continue spraying the house and bedding and carpets with citrus drops 5 drops per quart size spray bottle makes house smell better and fleas hate citrus that is the truth.. the basement kept the problem cycling as I had to walk through it to the washer and dryer and the eggs would hatch and hungry new born would hitch a ride upstairs. Took me a while to figure out how i was getting new infections but once i figured that out the basement was sprayed as well. Had this beat for a year and another friend of the boys came to the house and brought a new batch in. took me 4 months of persistence. but no problems for over a year now.. you have to be vigilante on treating these pests but it does pay off. I bathe animals once a week and thoroughly clean and spray house at the same time.

  10. I have killed four scorpions in my house this summer. I did a little research and found out that they are southern devil scorpions, small, black and creepy. How can I keep them out of my house in the first place? HELP!

  11. How do you get rid of spiders?? I live right by the river in northers Wisconsin and just found the biggest black spider I have ever seen my boyfriend said it could easily fit in the palm of your hand! We always get them in the day porch as well. There are cats dogs in the building and children who come to visit. Any one have any ideas please help! :)

    • White vinegar and coconut oil…. put it in a spray bottle and spray it in the corners of ur home and outside on bushes…. that’s what dr myles book says…. I hope it works

    • moth balls work for me but make sure they are not where animals can get them they are poisonous to animals.. I put them up on ledges of doors and windows in every room no more spiders..

  12. I bought Dr.Bader’s book because the TV ad claimed it had a natural repellant for fleas on cats and dogs. There is not one single thing in the entire book regarding fleas on pets. Even the back cover claims “get easy solutions to fleas and ticks. A total rip off!

    • Iwatched the advertisement when it came in tv… he showed that you can rub an orange on ur pets fur… basically u put a little hole in the orange and rub the animal… I haven’t tried it yet.. because I think my cat and dog will be sticky and lick it off… but he also said use a lint roller … I hope this helps

      • I saw the same infomerci this morning. You apparently didn’t listen very well. it said score the orange–not just put a hole in it. Scoring the orange means make multiple small. cuts thru the pealing but not into the orange. Difference? a bitter excretion from the pealing vs orange juice…

  13. My mother swears by horse apples, also called hedge apples, which are the green bumpy fruit of the bod-ark or Osage-orange tree. The inside of the horse apple contains a sticky white milk, that when dry is much like glue. My mother cuts them up (wearing gloves of course) and places them in places that spiders, cockroaches or my current problem, pill bugs, might like to be. Supposedly the pests eat the milk and it gums up their insides, killing them. I have noticed in my house a large pile of dead pill bugs laying around the horse apple slices, as well as a few spiders. So I think this old Native American remedy works pretty well.

  14. what if you have mice,roaches, stinkbugs and spiders… what can u do to kill the ones in the house and prevent them from coming in?

  15. someone told us once to put steel wool in the openings around the pipes under all sinks and around the pipes on the water heater. They tend to come in there. It helped us alot.

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