Do you have an ant problem? If so, you’re not alone. Ants are one of the most common pests in the world. They can be a nuisance, and they can also damage your lawn and property. When you spot mounds of soil in your yard, it’s a sure sign that there are thousands of underground visitors seeking to invade your house and lawn.
You can’t just ignore the fact that ant hills are an eyesore in your yard. Furthermore, these mounds impede plant and grass growth in your garden by disturbing their natural and simultaneous development.
What are the best ways of getting rid of ants from your grass? There are several ant-killing techniques, some of which use chemicals and others that employ natural methods. Neem oil, cinnamon, scorching water, and even dishwashing detergent are examples of natural treatments. The treatment will be determined by how the lawn is utilized.
In this article, we will discuss how to get rid of ant hills using natural methods. We’ll also talk about some of the benefits of getting rid of ants in this way. So if you’re dealing with an ant infestation, keep reading!
Table of Contents
What is an Ant Hill?
Before we discuss how to get rid of ant hills, let’s take a look at what they are. Anthills are simply mounds of soil that ants create as they tunnel underground. The mounds can be anywhere from a few inches to several feet high, and they often have a diameter of about two feet.
Ants build ant hills for two reasons: to house their colony and to store food. The anthill is the central location for the ant colony, where queen ants lay their eggs and the workers care for the larvae. The ants also use the anthill as a storage facility for food. They collect seeds, nectar, and other foods in order to keep the colony healthy.
In some circumstances, worker ants are able to combine sand and mud with tiny sticks in order to solidify the internal structure of the mound. As a result, the nest is better protected against harsh weather conditions such as rain and wind gusts. Because of the seeds carried by the dirt displaced by the ants while working on their colony’s home, anthills are blanketed in vegetation growing up and around them in heavily wooded regions.
The Different Types of Ant Hills
There are three types of ant hills: the dome-shaped hill, the cone-shaped hill, and the excavated mound:
- The dome-shaped ant hill is the most common type. It’s created when ants deposit soil near the entrance of their underground tunnel. The soil gradually accumulates until it forms a small hill.
- The cone-shaped ant hill is often found in drier climates. The ants will create a cone out of sand and dirt that they’ve collected, and they’ll live at the narrow end of the cone.
- The excavated mound is usually found where there is an abundance of food available to the ants. The ants will remove all of the earth from inside a small hole until they have a large, flat mound. This type of anthill is less common than the other two types.
The Different Types of Ants That Are Common in Lawns
The three most common ant species in lawns are listed below, along with their physical characteristics. When your garden is infested quickly, it will assist you to identify these ants:
The term “field ants” refers to many different types of ants that love living in gardens and fields.
Field Ants Appearance
The look of field ants varies considerably because they are composed of numerous species. The majority are about a quarter-inch long. They also come in a variety of colours, including black, red, and brown. Field ants are common, and you’ve undoubtedly encountered them before.
How Do Field Ants Damage Your Lawn?
Mounds are the main type of nest that ants use. These mounds are made underground before the ants begin to push up the earth in your lawn to form apparent ant mounds. These mounds tend to be enormous and may reach three feet or more in diameter.
These mounds harm the grass in your lawn. The ants also harm the grass’s root structures, creating brown spots in your yard. These mounds can make it difficult to trim your grass surface.
Ants of this variety are known as “tangential” or “farmer” ants. Farming ants secrete chemicals that attract other insects, which they consume as food. Aphids are one of the most prevalent victims. Aphids produce honeydew, a sweet liquid with sugar in it. These aphids harm your lawn’s health.
The Appearance of Farming Ants
Farming ants are about the same size as field ants, but they’re black, red and brown in colour. They have a slim waist and their antennas have 12 segments.
How Do Farming Ants Damage Your Lawn?
Farming Ant hills will be either circular or oval-shaped. The mounds these ants form tend to be smaller than those of field ants, reaching only six inches high and wide on average.
Unlike field ant mounds, farming ant hills typically don’t damage your lawn’s grasses nor harm its root system; however, the honeydew that aphids produce can cause problems for your plants. This liquid attracts other pests such as sooty mould and other aphids. These pests can further harm the appearance of your plants and even kill them.
These are the most harmful ants to our gardens. The Army Ant is a highly aggressive species that can be found throughout the Southern United States. To locate food, army ants may enter lawns and other areas with a lot of vegetation.
The colonies of army ants can limit the food supply for other animals, such as beetles, birds, and lizards. As a whole, army ants may kill chickens, lizards, goats, pigs, cats, dogs, and other small animals.
The Appearance of Army Ants
These little red ants are dark brown or golden in colour. They grow bigger over time and acquire stingers and hooks with maturity.
How Do Army Ants Damage Your Lawn?
Army ants are different from other ant species in that they don’t cause damage to your lawn by forming mounds and attracting bugs. Instead, these ants move in large colonies and destroy all of the greenery in an area. A colony of army ants can devour a complete section of your grass, leaving only bare dirt behind.
Army ants are a serious pest that can cause significant damage to your home. These ants will swarm plants and insects, causing them to die. Army ants also bite anything that gets in their path. If your children or pets come into contact with army ants, they risk being bitten which can endanger their health.
How Do Ant Hills Work?
Anthills are a lot more complicated than they appear. Underneath, worker ants have created a sophisticated subterranean system of tunnels and chambers for a variety of specialized functions. They’ve established compartments for food, rest, and the queen’s eggs.
In the morning, worker ants carry their queen’s eggs to chambers near the surface of the ground. This helps to keep the eggs warm. In the evening, the worker ants bring them back down to deeper levels. The ants take advantage of nature’s insulation against extreme temperature and weather conditions by utilizing the earth like a blanket.
How To Find Anthills in Your Yard
Finding ant hills in your yard is easy. Simply look for the mounds that ants create. The size and shape of anthills can vary, but most are about six inches high and wide. Field ant mounds typically have a circular or oval shape, while farming ant mounds are smaller and more elliptical.
Anthills can be found almost everywhere. From sidewalks to tree stumps to your yard’s various locations, they’re very flexible. They might be just about anyplace an ant colony decides to establish itself. We’ll start by describing how to locate the hill, then we’ll go into detail about what you should look for and how to spot it:
- Using two types of bait – It’s a straightforward (yet successful) approach for locating ant nests that involves using two kinds of bait in locations where you’ve seen an infestation. The ants should not be targeted with these baits, but rather they are used to show you where the ants are coming from.
- The two baits that are used – We usually recommend incorporating a bit of jelly and a dab of peanut butter (for ants that prefer a protein-based diet). Wait for the ants to appear in an area where you’ve seen them before.
- Be Patient – You can either wait for one of the ants to return some of the food to the mound or try to track the path that the ants are coming from if you want to speed things up.
- The use of pheromones – Ants use pheromones to direct their fellow ants along a safe route back from the foot of the hill to the top.
- Follow the ant brick road -Following this path will get you to the hill. Of course, ants may occasionally crawl through walls, which might make this a little difficult.
Methods of Killing Ants in Your Lawn
If you have a yard at home, it’s vital to learn about the most recent ant control methods so you can preserve it. You will be able to appreciate your lawn and keep it free of pests while also protecting your lovely plants from harm and allowing them to grow.
You’ll need to be cautious about the approach used, since using the incorrect technique may ruin your garden. To begin, you must select the best method for removing ants before determining which sort of ants have infested your yard.
- Anthill killer gels (Chemical)
- Anthill killer poison (Chemical)
- Chilli Peppers
- Diatomaceous Earth
- Olive Oil and Dishwashing Liquid
- Raking ant mounds
- Spraying soap and water
- Sugar and Boric Acid
- Using Boiling Water
Anthill killer gels (Chemical)
Gel-style ant poisons are available at most garden centres. It works in the same way as food-grade diatomaceous earth. Ants are drawn to this sweet gel, which is brought into the ants’ nest for the queen and her colony to consume. Despite being hazardous, the gel is harmless to both you and your plants since it is non-toxic.
Anthill killer poison (Chemical)
This type of ant killer is a powder that you can sprinkle around the anthill. It will kill ants on contact, and it’s also effective against other insects. You must be careful to avoid using this product near your plants, as it will harm them.
If you have an ant problem and don’t want to use chemicals, chilli peppers may be a good solution for you. Chilli peppers contain a substance called capsaicinoids that repel ants. You can either plant them near the anthill or sprinkle some ground chilli pepper around it.
Cinnamon is another spice that can be used to deter ants. Like chilli peppers, ants don’t like the smell of cinnamon. Sprinkle some on the ground near the anthill or mix it with water to make a spray.
Food-grade diatomaceous earth is effective in getting rid of ants because they crawl through it and get dehydrated. It’s also very safe for both plants and pets. You can buy it at most garden centres.
Olive Oil and Dishwashing Liquid
Another non-toxic method for getting rid of ants is mixing olive oil with dishwashing liquid. The oil will suffocate the ants, and the soap will break down their exoskeleton. Pour this mixture over the anthill, making sure to get all of the members of the colony.
If you have an ant problem and don’t want to use chemicals, peppermint may be a good solution for you. Ants don’t like the smell of mint, so planting peppermint around your home or sprinkling some ground peppermint near ant hills should help keep them away.
Raking ant mounds
This is a simple but effective method for getting rid of anthills. All you need is a rake, and it’s best to do it early in the morning when the ants are least active. Be careful not to damage your plants while raking.
Spraying soap and water
This is an easy way to get rid of small anthills. Mix some dishwashing liquid with water in a spray bottle and spray the anthill until it’s saturated. The soap will kill the ants.
Sugar and Boric Acid
Another way to kill ants is by using sugar and boric acid. Ants love sugar, so they’ll consume this mixture and die from boric acid poisoning. To make this bait, mix sugar and boric acid in a ratio of one part to 20 parts. Pour the mixture over the anthill.
Using Boiling Water
If you have a large ant infestation, boiling water maybe your best option. Boil a pot of water and pour it over the anthills.
Another non-toxic way to kill ants is by using vinegar. Vinegar will dissolve their exoskeleton and eventually kill them. Pour white vinegar over the anthill or mix apple cider vinegar with water in a spray bottle and use it to saturate the mound.
Will Ants return after you kill them?
The fact that their new home is destroyed shows them that you are serious. The ants will not return if you destroy their new habitat. This does not, however, imply that your grass will be completely safe in the future. Ant queens love soft and lush lawns! The ants may return; however, it may take months or even years for this to happen. At least you’ll know what to do if they come back in the future.
Now that you’ve learned about a few ant-control methods, you should be able to keep your home ant-free, especially if you don’t want to demolish ant mounds. If you have a lot of ants on your grass, it’s a good idea to consult an expert before selecting the finest pest management option.
Other Related Questions
Are ant hills dangerous?
No, ant hills are not dangerous. However, if you have an ant infestation, it’s a good idea to get rid of them as they can be pests. Ants can also contaminate food and spread disease.
Can I use bleach to kill ants?
Bleach is a harsh chemical and should not be used to get rid of ants. It can damage your plants and is harmful to both humans and pets. There are many safe, non-toxic methods for getting rid of ants that you can try instead.
Are ant hills deep?
Ant hills may be quite deep, ranging from 6cm to 4m (2.3622 inches to 13 feet) or more. The typical ant hill and tunnel are about that size, however, there have been ant hills and tunnels with depths of such proportions that they appear like cities.
Can ant hills kill trees?
Mounds of ants at the base of trees are unlikely to cause any harm to well-established trees. However, the ants girdling the plants and allowing roots to be exposed to the air can damage very young, delicate trees by drying out root systems.
Can you burn ant hills?
DO NOT ATTEMPT TO BURNS THE MOUND. You can’t get rid of the entire infestation in this manner, as you might with the techniques described above. Most likely, you’ll be rushing to the fire department or going to the emergency room sooner rather than later.
How do ant hills not flood?
The ants inside the ant hill will constantly be moving material up and down, which prevents the mound from becoming waterlogged. The entrance to the ant hill is also very small, which helps keep out moisture. Additionally, the ant hill acts as a natural drainage system during heavy rains. The rainwater runs off of the ant hill and into the surrounding soil, rather than seeping into and flooding the mound.
Can you move an ant hill?
Yes, you can move an ant hill by destroying their new home or using bait. If you use bait, make sure it’s something that ants love (like sugar) so they’ll consume it quickly. Boric acid is a good option for bait because it’s poisonous to ants.
Do ant hills have ants all year?
No, the ants who live in ant hills are only present during the warm months. Ants that live in your home can be present all year long. If you get rid of an ant hill and there are still ants in your yard, it’s likely they’re coming from a colony inside your home.
Should you mow over ant hills?
No, you should not mow over ant hills as this will only destroy the mound and not get rid of the ants. You can use one of the methods described above to get rid of them instead.
Is it illegal to kill an ant hill?
There is no specific law that prohibits destroying ant hills, but there may be regulations about pesticide use. It’s always best to check with your local authorities before taking any action.
Do all ants live in ant hills?
No, not all ants live in ant hills. Some ants build their nests in trees or underground. If you see a lot of ants outside, but don’t see any ant hills, it’s likely they’re living in another place like these locations.