Sugar Ant Hotel

The ants go marching one by one into this homemade sugar ant hotel. We make three to six of them every ant season—a family tradition—and place a few in the kitchen, and wherever else ants like to frequent. These ant-trap hotels completely rid our house of these common spring and summer pests, but I also have a nontoxic ant spray up my sleeve, which I share, here, too.

Sugar Ant Hotel

  • 1 cup borax
  • 1 cup sugar

  • 4 shallow glass jars with screw tops (small jar of marinated artichoke heart jars are ideal)
  • 4 loose wads of toilet paper

In a bowl, mix the borax and sugar. Place a loose wad of toilet paper into each of four different screw-top jars. Pour a quarter of the sugar and borax mixture into each of the four jars, over the toilet paper. Fill each jar with water to one inch of the top. Screw the lids on the jars, and with a hammer and nail, make four to eight holes in the lid. Place the jars in areas where you have ants (but keep away from pets and children).

This ant trap will catch the workers but not the queen. A more comprehensive solution is to blend 1/4 cup of confectioner’s sugar and one tablespoon of borax and sprinkle it in ant traffic areas. There is not enough borax with this method to kill the worker ants immediately, so they take it back to the nest, ultimately eradicating it. (If the worker ants do die at the powder, cut back on the borax.)

Caution: Keep borax products away from pets and other animals.

Citrus Solvent Spray
Place 1/4 cup of citrus solvent (such as Citra Solve) in a spray bottle, and add 2 cups of water. Spray in areas where there are ants. This works!

There are also a number of herbs such as mint and pennyroyal, and spices such as cayenne pepper, that repel ants.

By Annie B. Bond

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Lorraine Andersen
Lorraine Andersen4 months ago

I tried the borax and sugar as well. My whole yard this year seemed to be nothing but ant hills. I managed to get rid of the indoor ants by making sure that every little spot under that base boards was full of silicone. Once I did that I never saw an indoor ant again, but outside was another story. I tried putting the sugar and borax out in a jar lid, but the moisture in the air would turn it to rock in a matter of a day or two so I finally gave up.

Jennifer LaPenna
Jennifer LaPenna10 months ago

Thank u

John W.
.about a year ago

I will try this the next time I have ants.

John W.
.about a year ago

I will try this the next time I have ants.

Nancy P.
Nancy P.2 years ago

The hardest part is to let them take the bait back to the nest.....eventually it will kill the colony.

Michael H.
Mike H.2 years ago

Thank you for sharing this

Jeanne Rogers
Jeanne Rogers2 years ago

I'm new to FL and the house is new as well. We don't ever leave food, drinks, etc. anywhere but we've recently found "ghost ants" or "crazy ants". They're really tiny and hard to see. Can't tell where they come from---they just appear. I'll try the above mentioned tactic but is anyone else familiar with these or how to get rid of them? Thanks.

Fran F.
Fran away F.2 years ago

Care 2, "Lews J." is a spammer. Please get rid of him.

Ram Reddy
Ram Reddy2 years ago


Mary Beth M.
MaryBeth M.2 years ago

We did try the borax/sugar mixture one year when we had ants in the kitchen. It eventually did work, but I will admit, there was a mixture of horror and fascination watching the continuous trail of ants from the baseboard to the kitchen counter(!) and back down, and then having to wait it out. The hardest part was not being able to intervene (kill the little buggers) and keeping all cats, dogs or kids away from them in the meantime. Somewhere I read that cinnamon sticks are a natural repellant, so I put those in all the kitchen drawers and cabinets, just in case a few stragglers got other ideas.