Tips to get rid of bugs in the kitchen

June 30, 2015

Nobody wants to find unwelcome guests in their kitchen, but food attracts bugs and sometimes you just can't avoid it. Here are some tips to stop them in their tracks.

Tips to get rid of bugs in the kitchen

Bay leaf trick

Tiny sawtooth grain weevils, rice weevils and other bugs can enter paper or cardboard containers of flour, rice, oatmeal and breakfast cereal through the tiniest of cracks. Keep them at bay by putting a few dried bay leaves in the containers.

Freeze out

Some bug eggs are in the containers before you bring your groceries home and have yet to hatch. Kill off any eggs by keeping your products in the freezer for the first day or two.

Spicey repellant

One or two whole nutmegs buried in a sack of flour or box of rice or such will help keep tiny invaders out. Some people claim to have successfully repelled bugs by placing sticks of spearmint gum (unwrapped) at different points on the floor of the cabinet where susceptible foodstuffs are stored

Hot pepper attack

If your dried beans or peas are under attack, add a bit of dried hot pepper to the storage container.

Unappetizing grits

It's not that ants don't like to eat this dried-corn breakfast food; they just don't like crawling over powdery or grainy substances. When you see a line of ants on the march in your kitchen, spoon a long thin line of grits in their path and watch them beat a retreat.

Bye bye ants

If you know where ants are entering your kitchen from the outside, sprinkle a bit of cayenne pepper or ground cinnamon outside their door as an unmistakable "unwelcome" mat.

Roach collector

Wrap the outside of an empty jelly jar with masking tape and rub the inside of the jar with petroleum jelly. Pour in an inch of beer and top it with a few small pieces of ripe fruit and four to five drops of almond extract. Place the jar under the sink or anywhere else cockroaches lurk. Roaches will be drawn to the appetizing aroma, climb into the jar (the tape gives them traction), and drop inside to feast — but thanks to the slippery walls, they'll be unable to escape. To dispose of the tipsy roaches, fill the jar with hot water and flush the contents down the toilet.

DIY Flypaper

Take a cue from housekeepers of old and trap flies with flypaper, which you can easily make all by yourself. Hang these sticky strips underneath top cabinets, in doorways and from window frames. No hooks needed — just secure the string hangers with masking tape or duct tape.

  • 1 brown paper grocery bag
  • String
  • Tape
  • 150 grams (⅔ cup) sugar
  • 150 millilitres (⅔ cup) light corn syrup
  • 150 millilitres (⅔ cup) water
  1. Cut the bag into strips 3.5 centimetres (1½ inches) wide and 0.3 to one metre (one to three feet) long. Cut 12- to 15-centimetre (five to six inch) pieces of string and secure them to the top of the strips with transparent tape.
  2. Combine sugar, corn syrup, and water in a heavy two-litre (two-quart) saucepan and bring the mixture to a boil over high heat.
  3. Reduce the heat to medium and cook until the liquid thickens.
  4. Use a pastry brush to coat the strips with the liquid and then hang them wherever flies congregate.

You won't be seeing any more unwanted creepy, crawly guests in your pantry when you're armed with these easy, homemade solutions to keep bugs away.

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