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KIWI Magazine
Bugs, be gone

Image via Flickr user andrevanb under a Creative Commons license

Summer’s my favorite season, so it’s pretty easy for me to come up with about a million reasons why this time of year is great (sunshine! the beach! ice cream cones! running through sprinklers!). But it’s also easy for me to come up with one reason why this time of year is not-so-great: bugs. When the warm weather rolls around, the creepy critters are everywhere to be found—and here in Texas, we’re not just talking ants and fruit flies.

Free pest control services are frequently offered in my building, but since that means pumping my apartment full of nasty chemical spray, I always say no. Fortunately, my dog does a pretty good job nixing bugs naturally—whenever she sees one, she hunts it down in a jiffy. Still, I feel bad making her do all the work, so I asked some of our readers to share their favorite earth-friendly methods for getting rid of summer pests on Facebook. Some of their top tips:

Sugar ants: Tea Tree Oil. Also, simply weeding around the house helps immensely. As for mosquitos: California Baby 30+SPF is a natural bug repellent! -Anna R.

Neem oil eucalyptus and rosemary with some water in a spray bottle. -Janine V.

We just had a flea problem…sprinkled salt and baking soda all over the house, vacuumed up the next day. -Dayna L.

Peppermint oil! Ants, spiders, ect hate the stuff! I mix it into my normal cleaning spray (vinegar, water and a squirt of 7th gen dish soap) and critters stay out of the house all summer! And vitamin b-1 patches for when we’re camping .. they last 2-3 days and keep the bugs off! safe for the kids too! -Rebekah M.

I use coffee grounds around the house. It keeps the ants at bay and is great for plants that thrive in acidic soil. For mosquitoes, I use Tom’s of Maine Lemongrass deodorant, eat lots of garlic and wear oils like sandalwood, patchouli, ylang ylang, etc… For the kids, I use Burt’s Bees bug repellent. -Laura M.

Crushed cinnamon sticks keep the ants away, and makes the house smell nice! -Maria C.

Considering that conventional pest treatments usually smell pretty gross, I especially love the fact that most of these remedies will actually make your living space (and you) smell better. What about you—have you tried any of these? Got any bug zapping tricks of your own?

Reprinted from KIWI Magazine

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