Is eucalyptus oil toxic to ants? Does it repel or kill these insect pest species? Find out more.
Others include the use of food-grade diatomaceous earth or the adoption of essential oils. Using these repellent measures is one thing, and getting desired results is another.
One of the home remedy treatments we’ll be discussing is eucalyptus oil.
We intend to find out if this essential oil has any repellent effect on ants.
Using Eucalyptus For Ants: Toxicity
A key benefit of using natural products such as eucalyptus oil for ant control is the absence of toxicity. In other words, natural home remedies can be used without health risks of any sort.
How about allergies? Some users are likely to experience irritations from the use of eucalyptus oil as a repellent product.
That is why it’s important to apply to a small portion of the skin to ascertain its effect.
Any adverse reactions will require taking appropriate safety actions that include covering your skin when applying eucalyptus oil on ants among other steps.
Does Eucalyptus Work As An Ant Repellent?
Using eucalyptus oil as an ant repellent has proven to be effective in keeping these creatures at bay. However, most of the results and feedback received wholly consists of anecdotal evidence.
Despite such, there are clear reasons to see why eucalyptus oil will work as a repellent.
Before getting into details on how it works, let’s first consider how to apply it to ants.
Eucalyptus oil can either be used alone (in its pure or concentrated form) or can be combined or diluted with other products like rubbing alcohol, dishwashing liquid soap, and water.
Applying Eucalyptus in its Pure Form
In its pure form, eucalyptus oil does an excellent job to repel ants.
However, you’ll need to properly apply it to have the desired repellent effect. Some of the ways to do this include soaking cotton balls with pure eucalyptus oil.
These cotton balls are placed along the paths most frequented by ants. Also, you can have them placed along with entrances. Before long, ants are repelled off by the smell given off.
You’ll need to have the cotton balls replaced after every few days 2 to 4 days).
Another way to apply pure eucalyptus oil is by wiping common entry points used by ants. Such areas include door frames, windowsills, as well as tiny cracks.
You’ll need an absorbent material such as cotton balls for this procedure.
For this to be effective, you’ll have to reapply or wipe these points every 2 days for about a week or more.
Making Eucalyptus Ant Repellent by Mixing with Rubbing Alcohol
Another effective method to repel ants with eucalyptus requires making a mixture.
Here, eucalyptus oil will need to be mixed with some rubbing alcohol. To make this mixture, add a tablespoon of eucalyptus to a cup of rubbing alcohol and stir.
Get a spray bottle and empty your mixture into it. Shake and spray on any ants you find. This is best used when ants are lined up in search of food. After their death, you can have them cleaned up.
This action can be repeated whenever you find ants gathered.
Eucalyptus Ant Repellent with Dishwashing Liquid Soap
Another way to keep ants at bay using eucalyptus oil is by making a different type of mixture. This time, you’ll need some dishwashing liquid soap and water in addition to your eucalyptus oil.
A tablespoon of eucalyptus oil is added to about 2 cups of water.
The same amount (1 tablespoon) of liquid dishwashing soap is added to the water and stirred. With your mixture ready, you’ll need to have it emptied into a spray bottle.
Target areas with ant presence and have them drenched with your repellent solution.
Boiling Eucalyptus Plant Leaves
It’s no secret that eucalyptus oil is derived from the eucalyptus plant.
Here, you can decide to use the plant instead of the extracted oil. Pluck some leaves off of this (eucalyptus) plant and have them boiled in water for a few minutes.
This method is most ideal when you’ve located ant nests.
Without allowing it to cool off, have the water poured over the nest. You can increase the strength of this mixture by adding a tablespoon or more of eucalyptus oil.
When poured, some of the ants are killed including the queen while the lingering scent left behind drives off any ants from returning to the nest.
Does Eucalyptus Oil Kill Ants?
Eucalyptus oil works best as an ant repellant rather than an ant killer.
This isn’t to say eucalyptus oil won’t kill these creatures. When mixed with liquid dishwashing soap or in hot water, it will kill a lot of ants.
However, the scent left behind does more of ant repelling than killing.
How Eucalyptus Repels Ants
Now to the vital question; how does eucalyptus repel ants?
Eucalyptus oil, like most essential oils, is known for its strong scent. When applied, it does the work of countering the scent trails left behind by explorer ants and followed by the others.
To better understand this, we’ll need to consider the attraction for ants.
By their nature, ants go about in search of food. Most of the ant trails you see consist of worker ants. Certain members of the pack go about in search of food.
When a source is found, it’s marked by pheromone release.
Other ants home-in on such scents and trace their way to the food. Without these scent trails, ants will find it hard to locate a food source. This is where a product like eucalyptus oil comes in handy.
Apart from having a smell that’s detested by ants, this oil also masks the scent trail followed by these ants.
This is why ants are dispersed in different directions or repelled when eucalyptus oil is applied. So, all you have to do is target ants and spray your repellent products on them.
Eucalyptus oil will repel ants and is one of the home remedies homeowners use to combat ant-related problems. However, a more comprehensive approach will be to remove the source of attraction.
This can be achieved by properly storing food and cleaning up after cooking.
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