Homeowners applying insect and weed killer to their lawns and gardens are the biggest source of pesticides contaminating urban streams. Every year, they apply an average of 5 to 7 pounds of pesticides to their well-maintained lawns (Schueler, 1995). EPA estimates that nearly 70 million pounds of pesticides are applied to urban lawns each year.
Spray ants with soapy water.
Locate where the ants are entering your home, and place citrus oil and/or cayenne pepper along their entry area.
To make your own indoor ant traps, mix together 1/2 teaspoon each of honey, borax and a sugar substitute. Place the mixture into bottles and place the open bottles on their sides in the areas where ants are present. The ants will take the mixture back to their nests as food, and it will kill the entire colony. (Keep borax away from your children and pets).
Sprinkle clothe pieces with a few drops of eucalyptus oil, and place them on the table where your food will be served, as well as near your pet’s food dish.
Make sachets with cheesecloth and stuff them with dried basil leaves, bay leaves, cloves and eucalyptus oil. Place the sachets near doors or windows or anywhere else that flies are causing a problem.
Add brewer’s yeast and garlic to your pet’s food.
Outdoors, brush or comb your pet regularly.
Using mild soap and water, bathe your pet regularly.
Score the skin of a whole lemon, then slice the lemon, place the slices into a glass or stainless steel container and add one cup of boiling water. Soak the slices in the water overnight. The next day, remove the slices and rub the water into your pet’s fur. If your pet is large or has a lot of fur, use an additional lemon and cup of water.
If you do not have cats, make sachets with cheesecloth and stuff them with dried catnip. Place the sachets where roaches are present. You can also make a catnip tea and spray the tea behind counters, the back of cabinets and along all baseboard.
Spray roaches directly with soapy water to kill them.
If you have cabinets that drop down from the ceiling, place borax on top of them. The roaches will take the borax back to their nest, and it will kill the entire colony. (Note: keep borax away from children and pets, and do not place near food).
Purchase nontoxic roach traps.
BEES and WASPS
If you have a nest in your home or yard, call a professional to remove the nest and properly treat the area.
When outside, keep food and drinks covered.
Do not swat or squash bees and wasps. When you do their bodies release chemicals called pheromones that signal other bees or wasps to attack, and you could be swarmed.
If planning to be outdoors during the summer, avoid wearing bright colors and strong perfumes.