Pest Away Tips

9 Ways to Get Rid of Ants Outdoors: A Comprehensive Guide

How to Get Rid of Ants Outdoors: A Comprehensive Guide

Have you ever been lounging on your patio and suddenly, a trail of ants appears? Ants can be a major nuisance, especially when they invade your outdoor space.

Don’t fret, though. In this article, we will provide you with a comprehensive guide on how to get rid of ants outdoors.

Identifying Ant Presence

The first step in getting rid of ants is to identify their presence. Ant colonies are usually housed in ant hills, which resemble small mounds of dirt.

These hills can be found in your lawn or garden. You may also notice trails of ants, which are paths that ants use to forage for food.

Tracing ant trails can lead to the exact location of their nest.

Destroying Ant Nests and Trails

Once you’ve located the ant nest and trails, the next step is to destroy them. There are many natural ant repellents that you can try, such as sprinkling cinnamon, vinegar, or coffee grounds around the ant hill.

You can also try artificial ant repellents, which are available in stores. These products come in the form of sprays and baits.

Insecticides are another option in getting rid of ants. You can purchase insecticides that are specifically formulated for outdoor use.

When using insecticides, be sure to follow the instructions carefully and wear protective gear.

Regularly Cleaning and Organizing Outdoor Space

Prevention is key in keeping ants away. Keep your outdoor space clean and organized to deter ants from making their home in your yard.

Dispose of trash properly and regularly mow your lawn. Trim shrubs and remove debris, such as piles of leaves or branches.

Transfer compost to a location where ants cannot access it.

Reasons for Ant Infestation Outdoors

Ants are attracted to food sources, so keeping your outdoor space clean is crucial in preventing infestations. Open meal containers and food remnants can attract ants to your yard, so be sure to clean up after meals.

Unclosed trash cans can also be a source of food for ants. Ants are also attracted to other food sources in the vicinity.

Sweet, fatty, high-protein, and greasy foods are particularly appealing to ants. Bugs, aphids, meat, and dead animals are also food sources that ants are attracted to.

Lastly, ants prefer damp areas and water sources. Keep areas surrounding water fixtures dry and free of standing water to prevent ants from making their home there.

In conclusion, getting rid of ants outdoors requires diligence and preventive measures. Regular cleaning, keeping food sources secure, and eliminating water sources can help keep ants at bay.

When ants are detected, using natural ant repellents, artificial ant repellents, or insecticides can be effective in getting rid of them. By following these steps, you can enjoy your outdoor space without the pesky presence of ants.

Effects of Ant Infestation Outdoors

Ant infestation in outdoor spaces can have adverse effects on the surrounding environment. One of the major effects of ant hills is that they can cause damage to lawns.

Ants are known to construct vast networks of tunnels that can extend several feet deep into the soil. These tunnels can cause serious problems for the roots of the grass in your lawn.

If left unchecked, this can lead to damaged roots and an unhealthy lawn. Ant hills can also ruin the aesthetic of your outdoor space.

Ant hills are usually made up of piles of soil, mud, and dirt. These mounds can be unsightly and disrupt the design of your yard or garden.

Getting Rid of Ants Outdoors without Harming Pets

As much as you want to get rid of ants, it’s crucial to ensure that your methods are safe for your pets. Here are some ways to get rid of ants outdoors without harming pets.

Use Natural and Organic Repellents

Peppermint oil is a natural ant repellent that is safe for pets. It can be used by diluting five to six droplets of peppermint oil in a spray bottle filled with water.

You can then spray it around your outdoor space, which not only helps to deter ants but also adds a pleasant aroma to the area. Tea tree oil is also another great natural ant repellent that is safe for pets.

It can be used similarly to peppermint oil, by diluting a few droplets in a spray bottle filled with water. Cayenne pepper, oil of lemon eucalyptus, and cinnamon leaf oil are other natural and organic repellents that have been shown to be effective in deterring ants.

Harmless and Natural Methods

Boiling water is a natural and harmless method for getting rid of ants. It works by pouring boiling water directly into ant hills, which can kill the ants living in the tunnels.

You can also use flour as a natural method of getting rid of ants. Sprinkle flour around the ant hill, and the flour particles will stick to the ants’ legs, making movement difficult.

This method works best when used in dry weather conditions. Vinegar or detergent sprays are also effective natural methods of getting rid of ants.

Mix equal parts of vinegar or detergent with water and spray the solution around the ant hill. The strong scent and taste will deter the ants from returning.

Cinnamon, black pepper, and diatomaceous earth granules are other harmless and natural methods for getting rid of ants. These methods work by drawing out the moisture from the ants’ bodies, eventually leading to their death.


Getting rid of ants outdoors is important to maintain a healthy lawn and garden. Natural and organic repellents, harmless and natural methods are effective ways of getting rid of ants without harming pets.

Consider following these tips to ensure the safety of your pets while getting rid of ants outdoors.

Preventing Ants from Invading Cat Food Bowls Outdoors

Ants can be a nuisance when they invade your outdoor space and especially when they get into your cat’s food bowl. Here are some tips that you can follow to prevent ants from invading your cat’s food bowl.

Store Food in Closed Containers

Ants are attracted to food sources, so storing your cat’s food in closed, airtight canisters can help prevent infestations. This also helps in keeping the food fresh and safe for your feline companion.

Clean Bowl After Use

After each meal, ensure that you clean the cat food bowl and wipe any excess food from the surrounding area. This helps to minimize the scent of leftover food that can attract ants.

Use Ant Repellents around the Bowl

Ant repellents are a great way to deter ants from getting near the cat food bowl. Sprinkling cinnamon, black pepper, coffee grounds, or cayenne pepper around the bowl periodically can help to keep ants at bay.

Create a Moat Using Water-Filled Plate

Another way to prevent ants from getting to the cat food bowl is by creating a water moat. This is done by placing the cat food bowl in a larger plate filled with water.

The water around the bowl acts as a barrier that ants cannot cross.

Apply Petroleum Jelly on the Outer Side of Bowl

Petroleum jelly is a sticky substance that ants cannot walk on. Applying it around the outer side of the bowl or on the legs can act as a barrier, preventing ants from reaching the cat food bowl.

Getting Rid of Ants on Outdoor Patios

Ants can be a common sight on outdoor patios, but they can be eliminated using various methods. Here are some ways to get rid of ants on outdoor patios.

Apply Vinegar or Boiling Water to Ant Nest

If you have spotted an ant nest on your patio, you can try pouring vinegar or boiling water directly onto the nest. This helps to kill the ants and discourage their return.

Rake Ant Trails

Raking the ant trails can help disrupt the pheromone trail, which is a scent that ants leave for their colonies to follow. This can be an effective method for preventing ant infestations.

Spray Surfaces with Vinegar and Natural Repellents

Spraying outdoor surfaces with vinegar and natural repellents like essential oils can help deter ants. To create a barrier, mix equal amounts of vinegar and water and spray around outdoor patios, creating a scent barrier that the ants will not cross.


Ants can be a nuisance in outdoor spaces. Following these tips like storing food in closed containers, cleaning the bowl after use, creating a moat using water-filled plates, and applying petroleum jelly to the outer side of the bowl can prevent ants from invading the cat food bowl outdoors.

Getting rid of ants on outdoor patios can be done by applying vinegar or boiling water to ant nests, raking ant trails, and spraying surfaces with vinegar and natural repellents. By implementing these methods, you can keep your outdoor spaces free from pesky ants.

Getting Rid of Ants in Outdoor Flower Pots

Outdoor flower pots can be a great way to add pops of color and beauty to your outdoor space. However, they can also attract ants.

To get rid of ants in outdoor flower pots, here are a few methods that you can try. Sprinkle Cinnamon, Black Pepper, or Diatomaceous Earth Granules

Ants are repelled by cinnamon, black pepper, and diatomaceous earth granules.

Sprinkle these natural substances on top of the soil in your outdoor flower pots. This helps to create a barrier that stops ants from getting to the roots of the plants.

After sprinkling the substances, you can use a sharp-hose watering technique to ensure that the granules get to the bottom of the soil.

Plant Flowers to Attract Natural Ant Predators

Another effective method is to attract natural ant predators to your outdoor space. Flowers like marigolds, chrysanthemums, and fennel can help attract natural ant predators like ladybugs, lacewings, and praying mantises.

These insects feed on ants and can help to reduce their population in your outdoor flower pots.

Best Ant Killers for Outdoors

If natural methods don’t seem to work, using ant killers can be an effective way to get rid of ants outdoors. Here are some of the best ant killers for outdoor use.

Ortho Home Defense Insect Killer

Ortho Home Defense Insect Killer is a powerful insecticide that can be used to kill ants outdoors. This insecticide contains bifenthrin and zeta-cypermethrin, two active ingredients that target ants and other insects.

Ortho Home Defense Insect Killer also leaves a non-toxic residue when applied, making it safe for pets and other outdoor wildlife.

Terro T300 Liquid Ant Baits

Terro T300 Liquid Ant Baits are an effective way to kill ants outdoors. These baits come in a resealable shaker bag that can be used to sprinkle bait directly on ant hills and trails.

When ants consume the bait, they carry it back to their colony, killing the queen ant and other ants in the colony.

Fire Ant Shield Mound Destroyer Granules

Fire Ant Shield Mound Destroyer Granules are specially formulated to kill fire ants and other types of ants outdoor. This granular product can be applied directly on ant hills, and it reaches deep into the tunnels of the ant hill, killing the queen ant and other ants.

The deep-reaching formula ensures that the granules are distributed evenly, killing all the ants in the colony.


Getting rid of ants in outdoor flower pots or outdoor spaces requires a bit of work and effort. Natural methods like sprinkling cinnamon, black pepper, or diatomaceous earth granules and planting flowers to attract natural ant predators can be effective in getting rid of ants.

If natural methods fail to work, ant killers like

Ortho Home Defense Insect Killer,

Terro T300 Liquid Ant Baits, and

Fire Ant Shield Mound Destroyer Granules can be effective in killing ants. By following these methods, your outdoor spaces can be kept free from ants, allowing you to enjoy your outdoor space to the fullest.

DIY Methods to Kill Outdoor Ant Colonies

Ants can be a nuisance when they invade your outdoor space, and your immediate reaction would be to get rid of them. Here are some do-it-yourself (DIY) methods that you can use to kill outdoor ant colonies.

Rake Open Ant Nest and Apply Boiling Water or Vinegar

Raking an ant nest and pouring boiling water or vinegar onto the nest can kill ants outdoors without the use of harmful chemicals. These methods are non-invasive and do not harm the surrounding environment.

Boiling water kills ants by destroying their internal structure, while vinegar suffocates the ants.

Create Homemade Ant Bait Using Boric Acid and Sugar

Homemade ant bait containing boric acid and sugar is effective in exterminating ants. To make this bait, mix 2-3 tablespoons of boric acid with a half cup of sugar, and enough water to create a paste.

Apply the mixture onto small pieces of wax paper and place them in areas where ants are commonly found. This bait works by attracting ants to consume the mixture, which ultimately leads to their death.

Using Vinegar and Diatomaceous Earth to Kill Ants Outdoors

Vinegar and diatomaceous earth granules can be used to kill ants outdoors. Here’s how to use them.

Create Vinegar and Water Solution and Spray on Ant-Infested Areas

Ants are repelled by the strong scent of vinegar. Therefore, creating a vinegar and water solution and spraying it on ant-infested areas can help keep ants at bay.

To make the solution, mix equal parts of vinegar and water in a spray bottle, then spray the solution on kitchen surfaces, garbage bins, and ant trails.

Sprinkle Diatomaceous Earth Granules Directly on Ant Trails and Nests

Diatomaceous earth is an effective natural substance for killing ants. These granules are naturally occurring, and when applied to ant-infested areas, they absorb the natural oils in the ant’s body, thus dehydrating and killing them.

To use diatomaceous earth, sprinkle the granules directly on ant trails and nests using salt shakers, flour sifters, or insect sprays. You can also create an ant bait by mixing diatomaceous earth with sugar and water to make a paste, then placing it into small containers near the ant infestation.


With the above DIY methods, getting rid of outdoor ant colonies can be non-invasive and environmentally friendly. Raking open ant nests and applying boiling water or vinegar can kill ant colonies without causing any harm to the surrounding environment.

Homemade ant bait using boric acid and sugar can be effective in attracting ants and ultimately leading to their death. Vinegar and diatomaceous earth granules are natural substances that can be used

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