Poison Ants DIY

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  1. Heather Page says:

    You have used the words Borax and Boric Acid in this post. I know that they are not quite the same thing. Which one is it?

  2. Wow girl guess you got rid of Princess Atta and the entire ant colony huh? What I love about this method is that you don;t have that poison smell that spray poisons leave behind…I’m always afraid to use those around kids and pets! Thanks for sharing this great tip at the Fluster Buster Party! Can’t wait to see what you bring next week, Lizy Party co host

  3. I had some ants early in the summer, saw this idea on Pinterest, ran out and bought Borax, and when I got back…all the ants were gone! I never got a chance to try this out. So apparently, just having a sealed box of Borax in the house is enough to scare them away ;-) Good to know it works…and I’m ready if they come back!

  4. Oh how I love this post. I especially like the little thought boxes in the pictures. I’ve done icing sugar and borax, but never mixed with warm water and cotton balls….thinking I might have to try that. The ants I tend to deal with are red and mostly stay around the vegetable garden, those little buggers will bit to protect “their” veggies. So I think I will be adding the warm water and cotton balls, 4 hours to death works great for me ;)

    Thanks for the post.

  5. I sit Borax or Boric acid? You named both.

  6. Just a little confused, your ingredients say Borax but your directions say boric acid??

  7. You are showing a box of Borax but in the instructions it says to use boric acid. There IS a difference. See here:

    Important to know because of children and pets!

    • Melanie,

      I used Borax not boric acid. Borax is also considered a toxic substance and should be kept away from children and pets. Thanks for commenting! Tracy – The Middle Sister

  8. How does it effect them though- the borax?

  9. Is this toxic to cats?

    • Yes it would be toxic to your cat. It would be best to keep your cat in another room or outside until the ants are gone and you can remove the Borax. Tracy – The Middle Sister

  10. I’m a little confused, in the instructions it says Boric acid. but in the ingredients it says Borax. Which did you use??

    • Donna,

      I used Borax not Boric acid, I’ve corrected the post to avoid further confusion. Thanks for commenting! Tracy – The Middle Sister

  11. Put cotton ball in a small child proof pill bottle and drill a few small holes in it. and set on counter or Where you see the ants coming in. Just make sure the holes are big enough for the ants to get into it.

  12. Sue Watson says:

    I guess it would not be good around dogs either. My dog gets into everything.

  13. I don’t like any bugs. I haven’t really seen ants in the house in quite some time but that’s probably because we have a company come around to spray for them. Glad you got the upper hand on this one.

  14. This is a great idea. Will try outside as soon as it stops raining and the solution will remain undiluted. My ants find their way in by the kitchen sink backsplash no matter how sealed it is. I put a thin line of boric acid along the back of the backsplash with an old hair coloring bottle. Has stopped the invasion cold. This is NOT for households with kids or pets. I’d use the cotton ball idea, but they haven’t crossed the boric acid line, so I’ll get ‘em at the source outside. I also put the boric acid in between the windows, that’s stopped the critters also. Thanks!

  15. wonder if this would work for earwigs to

    • I did some research and couldn’t fine any evidence that this and poison would work on earwigs. If you decide to give it a try we would love to hear how it turns out! Tracy – The Middle Sister

  16. You talk about treating ants inside the house, but what about ant mounds and trails outside? Can this mixture be put in a sprayer and used on mounds in the yard or would you suggest just dropping a cotton ball on top of mound?

    • Wands,

      I would drop the cotton ball on top of the mound. This strength of Borax can be harmful to plants. Let us know how it works! Tracy – The Middle Child

  17. Have you tried using this outdoors? I am interested in trying just need to figure out a way to keep it covered from the birds and other animals. I have a problem with those big red ants. OKAY. I just read your post on adding it to the top of the mound. I am going to try it. I will let you know how it works in a few days. =)

  18. I have used white vinegar and water, with luck, just spray around where they are at and they disappear and it doesn’t hurt your pets safe for kids also

    • Barbara,

      Thanks for the great tip on how to get rid of ants without using Borax! Have a great day, Tracy – The Middle Sister

    • Ants mark the trail for their buddies using formic acid (HCOOH). some species can actually spray it as a defense measure. The vinegar (.CH3COOH) is probably so close in composition that it confuses the ants and they get lost or otherwise just avoid the areas where they are blind.’- chemically speaking. I’ve used vinegar in the house and around the outside perimeter of the house as a general deterrent.

      I also use borax/sugar (sometimes a drop or 2 of honey) a small bottle cap around the yard. Never thought about the cotton ball. Great idea. going to try it today.

      If anyone out there still smokes, I have had good success in controlling spiders by soaking butts in ethanol for a few days, filtering and then spraying areas popular with spiders using an old windex bottle. Seems to work for cockroaches as well. Probably a good idea not to smoke when you’re spraying though. Be careful not to spray anything that might get stained with tobacco juice.

    • I tried using the vinegar and water because I don’t have any borax and I use that for cleaning. It did kill the ones I have but more are coming in anyway. So that might work for short term.

      • Ali,

        I hope your vinegar and water will work for you long term! If not the ant poison works like charm. Thanks for following us, we love hearing from you! Tracy (the middle sister)

      • I use full strength vinegar in a spray bottle and it works very well.

        • Hi Christa,

          I’ve never heard of using vinegar before for killing ants. I always have some on hand so I’ll give it a try if any pesky ants show up again. Thanks for the great tip!

  19. Does this work for in side ants only or can it be used on them big ant piles out side?? Any one try to use this outside??

  20. Recently we moved into the home I have wanted for almost 20 years BUT IT HAD TERMITES! !! I was very nervous but we got the hose treated and continue to all year long. One day I noticed a large amount of ants on the exterior of the house near an area I knew termites had been. Worried I called our bug guy from Micks, (in St Louis Mo) our guy came out and looked and said that since the ants were only cleaning up the termite debris. He said termites and ants are enemy’s and that ants are scavengers. So why am I saying all this? It would seem to me that since the ants are coming from the wall you may have a bigger problem than you know and may need to call a professional. Ants can cause damage just like any other bug and your home is a huge investment that should not be ignored. Trust me I’m taking responsibility for the damage the previous owners chose to ignore. Thank you for your post I will be trying it if I have ants come in for the trash can or forgotten soda left in one of the kids rooms but please I beg you to get your home inspected before it’s too late and you have bad dammage. Respectfully Rachel from St Peters Mo.

    • Rachel,

      Thanks for your insights, I’ll look into having our home inspected. Although there is also a chance the ants were after the food my son dropped on the floor while he was eating at my desk! Thanks so much for following us and commenting. I appreciate your concern and advise. Tracy (the middle sister)

  21. amanda ellis-carroll says:

    I found this on another site a few years ago…. IT WORKS WONDERS! I have since then passed it on to many other people… everyone should try it, but KEEP IT AWAY FROM YOUR PETS PLEASE!!!- Amanda

  22. lonnie walton says:


    • Hey Lonnie!

      Add about 1/4 cup to each load of laundry, it works great! Check out this post: 30 Little Know Uses For Borax (, from One Good Thing by Jillee. Oh, and save a little of that Borax just in case any of those pesky ants come back! Have a great day, Tracy (the middle sister)

  23. Once you have them out of your house, a line of chalk around the windows and any cracks in the foundation will stop them from getting back in. Or coffee grounds (used, of course) will drive them away from the house and your plants will like the grounds too. Plant peonies away from the house to give them somewhere else to go, they love peonies.

    • Sibu,

      Thanks for letting me know about the chalk and coffee grinds, both are easy solutions for keeping the ants from returning. I just happen to love, love, love peonies, this is a win, win situation for ants and humans! Thank you for following us and leaving your comment. Have a great day – Tracy (the middle sister)

  24. Will this work for fire ants in the yard?

    • Hi Kay!

      It is harder to get rid of ants outside than inside. But yes, this should work with the fire ants in your yard, you may have to do it more than once. Best of luck, Tracy

  25. Julie Bowling says:

    This worked for me to get rid of big, black ants. I didn’t have cotton balls, so I soaked a paper towel. I’m glad I read this, though. I had been wondering about my cats. I locked them out of the room while I had it on the floor, but the idea on here of cutting holes in a medicine bottle so the ants could crawl in, but cats not being able to get it is great! Thank goodness we are all trying to use fewer chemicals!

    • Hey Julie!

      I’m so happy your big black ants are gone! Great to know that paper towels work just as well if you are in a pinch. Thanks for following us and leaving a comment, Tracy

  26. Well, I hope this works, I have everything I need and am getting ready to try it. I just have one question. Is the poison storable? I think I’m going to make a lot more than I need, but can I store it or should I throw it out?

    • Alisha,

      I stored mine for a month just in case the ants came back. I ended up with some ants in the garage and it worked just as well after having been stored for a month. We would love to hear how it works for you! Good luck, Tracy

  27. I’m so glad I found this post. I have very sandy soil in my yard and every year, despite my efforts, there are ant colonies dotted all over the yard. I’m really looking forward to trying this out and have high hopes that it will work. Short of hiring a professional I’ve tried numerous store bought solutions that either weren’t very effective, were costly, or required time and effort to distribute properly. This seems so much faster, easier and cheaper! I’m really excited (isn’t that pathetic?) to try this and am hoping it will be a simpler solution that works.

    Thanks for the information!

    • Hi Sandra!

      NO, it is not pathetic to be excited and hopeful that this method will work for you! I was thrilled when it worked for me. Outside ants are a little harder to get rid of so don’t get discouraged if you have to try it a couple of times. Good luck and let us know how it works for you :) Thanks for your comment, they make our day! Tracy

  28. I share a room with my cat , food and all, and the ants found her food, coming in through the casing in the window. I sprinkled cinnamon on the sill. This stopped most of them…but every once in awhile a scout will make it through. So I have a spray bottle of Shaklee’s Basic H cleaning mixture…which strips the oils off their body and they drown. So all non-toxic and clean walls, lol

    • Hi Anne!

      Wow, a product that is non-toxic and helps with multitasking, I’ll have to check it out. Thanks for letting me know! Tracy

  29. You could always take an empty disposable water bottle, remove the lid, push the cotton ball into the bottle, and place the open bottle wherever the ants can access it…. yet pets & children would be less likely to come into contact with the Borax. (Or alternately, place the Borax soaks cotton ball inside the empty water bottle, SuperGlue the lid onto it, & cut a small hole in the bottle to lessen the access to the Borax even further, yet still allow the ants an open invitation to your poisonous feast!)

  30. All you need is to soak ONE cotton ball…………………i.e. just a 1/2 TSP of sugar and 1/2 TSP of Borax and a few drops of water to moist in it………….no need for “buckets” of the mixture. Dry mix without water works as well. Just keep it even sugar/Borax and not too diluted. This recipe must have been “invented” by makers of Borax :)) If you don’t have Borax at home, use whole wheat flour or cream of wheat – no need for sugar. It works.

    • Hey Jay!

      Thanks for letting us know that we can make smaller amounts of this awesome ant poison! No more storing the extra poison in the fridge :) Have a great day! Tracy


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