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boric acid v. 20 Mule Team borax

Pirata
20 years ago

My beds, yard, and walkways have been invaded by colonies of small, black, stinging (I think, unless something else got me yesterday) ants that raise sandy-looking mounds. I think they killed everything in a 3 sq ft section of one bed with their excavations, and I'm allergic to ant stings, so I can't live and let live with this bunch.

My question: will inexpensive laundry borax do the job as well as expensive boric acid from the drugstore? And what is the effect of borax on plants?

Any other non-grisly ways to deal with them en masse?

Thanks!

Comments (104)

  • gdc06
    16 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    Dr. Warner

    I too share your frustration with people who insist that all naturally occuring things are "organic" and all man made things are "inorganic." Unfortunately this misunderstanding extends into professions where one would reasonably assume that individuals would undertant that organic compounds contain carbon and inorganics do not. I once had a technical sales rep from a major equipment manufacturer tell me that his test equipment could detect "organic" helium.

    Greg

  • hoosiergirl
    16 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    Does anyone know if we used boric acid powder before drywall for our new construction, how long it would be effective?

  • jwarner191
    16 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    I found something GOOD that you will like about ants! If you have trouble falling asleep, here is a website for counting ants that will help:

    Here is a link that might be useful: count ants to fall asleep

  • oconee_belle
    15 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    what does the baking cocoa do?

  • green_goldenspread
    15 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    I've used 20 Muleteam borax around the perimeter of my yard and house outside for years and have never had a roach or ant problem. I live in a neighborhood that's known for having roach problems, but not me. I attribute this to my consistant use of borax. I usually put it down at the first signs of spring and then whenever I start noticing a bug problem, which is rarely. I also put it behind my hutch in the kitchen in the floor along the baseboard as I store food in that hutch. I am raising worms and have put borax around the bottom of the legs on the worm table to keep the ants at bay. No problems yet. I'm a big proponent of 20 Muleteam borax and it's a wonderful household cleaner as well. 2 Gallons hot water, 1/4 lemon juice, a couple squirts of Dawn and 1/2 cup borax will clean like crazy and leave a nice shine and smell behind and keep insects at bay.

  • dorisl
    15 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    I put some out on the step this year and had fun watching the carpenter ants try to jump over it, it was the ant olympics!

  • abudin
    14 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    Hi guys,

    I'm wondering if anyone can help me with my question...
    I just moved into a flea infested suite 2 weeks ago. In a desperate attempt to get rid of fleas on my clothings, I sprinkled Borax over my very expensive dry cleaning only wool jacket without thinking of the consequences and dump it in a garbage bag. Now my problem is that I don't know if I can take it to the dry cleaner to get it clean since I don't know if Borax will react to any dry cleaning chemicals and ruin my jacket?! Or maybe it's ruined already? Anyone? Thanks

  • yareally_yahoo_com
    14 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    Posted by jwarner191 10 (jwarner191@excite.com) on Tue, Aug 3, 04 at 22:05

    Someone above said that "Diatomaceous Earth ... is completely organic." Well, that is not correct! Diatomaceous Earth is composed of silicon dioxide (SiO2). That is 100% INORGANIC!

    Really? SI02 is inorganic? Then what do you call sand?

    The chemical compound silicon dioxide, also known as silica or silox (from the Latin "silex"), is the oxide of silicon, chemical formula SiO2, and has been known for its hardness since the 9th century[1]. Silica is most commonly found in nature as sand or quartz, as well as in the cell walls of diatoms. It is a principal component of most types of glass and substances such as concrete.

    Also:

    Diatomaceous earth, also known as DE, TSS, diatomite, diahydro, kieselguhr, kieselgur and celite) is a naturally occurring, soft, chalk-like sedimentary rock that is easily crumbled into a fine white to off-white powder.

    Yep, looks pretty inorganic to me.

    Silicon Dixoide

    Diatomaceous Earth

  • jwarner191
    14 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    glad you agree: diatomaceous earth and sand are inorganic materials.

    Here is a link that might be useful: toxicities of common materials

  • Profligate01092008_winterbourn_net
    14 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    Also if you do any metal brazing it works well for a flux. Heat the brass rod with an acetylene torch and dip it in borax. Your ready to braze.

  • jonmaxx
    14 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    Hey guys,
    I have a roach problem. They're not city roaches, but these guys don't get bigger than maybe an inch (an inch even sounds like too much). Anyway, I read everyone's tips and I believe that everyone's got some really helpful advice. I'm going to try a couple of those. I found another recipe on another website. The user "lucyleaf" has left a recipe that sounds like it might be helpful, and I would like to share with all of you:

    1 cup flour
    1 small onion, chopped
    6 oz Boric Acid
    1/4 cup shortening (or a little less vegetable oil)

    Blend until crumbly, and then add enough water to moisten. Make marble-sized balls. Put them everywhere.

    This recipe sounds like it'll work because it mixes household food ingredients with boric acid. I'm actually thinking about glazing the outside of these little marbles with maple syrup to try to attract them to eat it even more. I'm also going to try using Borax to clean my kitchen floors (since that's where I believe the nests are.. they seem to be coming out of there).

    :: sighs :: I'm at a loss. It seems like not matter how clean I keep the kitchen and wipe down the counter tops with Lysol, they keep coming back. I want to be rid of them for good. I live in an apartment building, and I know wiping them out is not easy -- but I at least want to keep them at bay.

    I will gladly read any other suggestions.

    Thanks in advance!

  • jwarner191
    14 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    The roaches are either coming from some secluded nest area in your apartment or from other apartments. Often they will come through the walls following plumbing tubes. If you have openings around the plumbing in bathrooms and kitchen, you might close them with some foam material. See if that helps.

  • clay_more
    14 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    I had permanent ant infestations in the walls. The same type ants also came in from outside. I tried various ratios from 2% (1 tsp boric acid per cup of powdered sugar) to 12.4% (2 tbs boric acid per cup of powdered sugar) but this did not work. I sprinkled pure boric acid in crevices and on surfaces where the ants walked but the ants ignored it and did not even take a detour.

    Instead of dry powdered sugar I tried substituting sugar water made from 2 cups water and 1 cup sugar with 2% to 12% ratios of boric acid. I put this out in multiple drops spaced 1/2 inch apart in jar lids and in cotton balls soaked in the boric acid/sugar water mixture. This seemed to work better and temporarily reduce the ant population but did not kill the queen and the colony recovered and returned.

    Then I read somewhere that after mixing the water and sugar and boric acid the trick was to put it in the microwave and let it boil for 3 to 5 minutes until the boric acid is completely dissolved or completely reacted with the sugar and water. I have forgotten the best ratio, however.

    Finally success! Boiling the mixture is what did the trick since boric acid will not completely dissolve in the sugar water without boiling. I did not write down the recommended ratio because I was skeptical but this time it finally got the queen(s) and there is no ant problem except for the occasional stray ant from outside. I have carpenter ants outside and want to try this again. Does anyone know the best ratio?

  • jwarner191
    14 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    PROCEDURE FOR SENDING ANT SAMPLES
    FOR IDENTIFICATION

    1. Collect several ants (preferably 10 or more; NOT SQUASHED)
    2. place ants in a crush-proof container, packed in hand-sanitizer gel
    3. include:
    a. name of the person who collected the sample
    b. location the sample was collected (address or coordinates); you may also include the habitat (example: "under a log")
    c. date of collection
    4. send to:
    Dr John Warner,
    ANT LAB
    University of Florida Ft. Lauderdale Research and Education Center
    3205 College Av
    Davie, FL 33314
    5. include your email address so the results of the identification can be sent to you
    6. or a self-addressed, stamped envelope, if you do not have email.

  • bobn
    14 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    To John Warner:
    So after all these entries, can you say that 20 mule team borax is as effective as boric acid when used as a bait? Can we mix it with sugar and water to kill the queens?
    BTW: what was the bait you used in the "counting ants" picture?

    Bob

  • jwarner191
    14 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    There is probably not much difference in the two as toxicants, but I have never tested them to compare their toxicities. You would have to do a separate test for each species of insect you want to kill.

    The bait I used in the photo was liverwurst mixed with a little water to make it pliable. Bigheaded ants love it. There was no toxicant in the bait; it was just used to get ant population counts for experiments.

    Have fun!

    Dr Warner

  • danamay
    14 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    I have been trying to get rid of ants in my garden, and while placing a cup of borax/sugar/water mix next to an ant hole where my lettuce use to be (they destroyed it), I spilled some. I dug up the dirt really deep and washed it out. Do I still risk poisoning the rest of my plants?

  • bingabrown_gmail_com
    14 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    1. Is a teaspoon of Borax per two plants going to hurt the zucchini? Gardening book said it was good.

    2. Cotton balls, one cup water, half-cup sugar, two tbsp. Borax mixture wiped out major ant infestation overnight. Dissolve sugar in warm water, add Borax, soak cotton balls, leave in strategic places. Source:

    http://www.getridofthings.com/

    There's even some practical advice on getting rid of ghosts.

  • tamko
    14 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    Anyone ever tried 20 Mule Team Borax for bedbugs?

  • pstanfield
    14 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    Need help getting rid of cockroaches. Would like to use 20 Mule Team Borax, any recipes??

    We've been living in our new house for a little over a month, and seemed to have picked up some cockroaches either in the packing boxes, which were used (NEVER make that mistake again), or from storing our goods in a portable storage unit for a couple of weeks. Either way, we first saw a couple when we were unpacking our boxes, and then anywhere beetween 2-12 days I see one around the refrigerator, near the kitchen sink, or by the garbage. I sprinkle Borax in the trash every night hoping to attract and kill the roaches. I have started to sprinkle Borax in the refrigerator pan.

    What are some good strategies/recipes for annihilating these vile creatures? We've identified them as German cockroaches. I only see one at a time, and I have killed the ones I've seen, but I know others are lurking. The last 4 that I've seen have been in the morning (daylight).

    We have gotten rid of all the boxes (within a week), EXCEPT the ones in our basement storage, which have kids toys, some books, holiday decorations, the usual. Should we unpack all the boxes, go through all the items, get rid of the boxes, and then repack our stuff in plasic bins with lids???

    If I had to pick a number, I'd say that I have seen and killed a total of 15 roaches from June 23 to today, August 3.

    Would appreciate any help either by email or posting. Thanks for your help!!

  • jwarner191
    14 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    For roaches:
    Advion or MaxForce roach gel

  • laurelrose
    13 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    I've been battling Argentine ants in So. Calif. for twenty years. I know from my own experience that regular commercial pesticide treatments don't eliminate ants permanently, and that the problem seems to get even worse. I'm trying to avoid using ant sprays around my current home of eight years. I tried using a bait of borax and powdered sugar, both dry and with water, but the ants ignored the bait. I didn't know to use hot water to dissolve the borax completely, and I didn't know the difference between borax and boric acid, or where to find boric acid. Thank you to all the people who have contributed helpful information.

    Thank you, Dr. Warner, for sharing your expertise and your website address.

  • Kimmsr
    13 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    Ants, in your house, are a symptom of a problem not the problem. Spraying poisons in your house to kill ants is not the proper solution, determining why they are there and eliminating that reason is what will get rid of the ants. Carpenter ants in your house are an indication of a serious problem since their presence can mean a problem with the houses structure.
    We had a problem with ants in the kitchen once and when we remodeled that kitchen found that the previous owners inept plumbing caused the wall behind the sink to be constantly damp and this was where the ants were gathering. That was cleaned up and fixed and the ants left and have not returned. We also had carpenter ants wandering around in the house and during a roof repair found a leak that allowed sructural wood to be we and this was where the carpenter ants were gathering. That was repaired, dryed out, and the carpenter ants left and have not returned. Do not simply treat the symptom but find out what the problem is and fix that.

  • thisis34684
    13 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    I found that ACE hardware sells roach killer Boric Acid for $3.79 for 16 oz.

  • sonyapizz
    13 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    We moved into a newly built home at the end of November (there was already snow on the ground). In the middle of March we noticed our first ant and thought they were coming from outside. But it turns out they must have built a nest in the wall and lay dormant through the winter. They were in our kitchen, but not going anywhere near food. Then we noticed them in our master ensuite which is directly above the kitchen. After reading that they like damp areas I paid close attention to our toilet, and sure enough they were coming up the plumbing underneath the toilet seat.

    I used the recipe noted way above: 1/3 tsp borax, 1 tsp sugar, a few drops water to make a paste. I applied this to a torn open dixie cup and they swarmed it. I kept replacing the cup every so many hours as the paste dries out and they prefer it damp. It worked like a charm. I watched them with great fascination as they marched to the cup and back down the base of the toilet. The ones that died on the cup were carried back to the nest by the others. Problem solved in less than 12 hours. Haven't seen another ant since and it's been 2 weeks!

  • warnerjk1
    13 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    Boric Acid is available in vials under the brand name of Hot Shot at Home Depot. One vial treats 2 gallons of water. Spray it around, but not plants and around the foundation stem walls and on patios to kill a varity of pests like cockroaches, crickets and ants. Each spraying lasts 3 to 4 months. Hot Shot powder works well under kitchen cabinets. Boric acid is a solution of sulphuric acid and boron. (H3BO3) or B(OH)3 It is safe around children, it is just slightly more toxic than table salt. 20 Mule Team Borax and be mixed with electrolight (Battery Acid avialable at automotive stores or H2SO4 Sulpheric Acid available at plumbing suppy stores (drain cleaner)) I spray under kitchen appliances and bathroom cabinets and around toilets. Spray around plumbing penetrations to prevent cockroaches from coming up pipes from underground. Based on mammal median lethal dose (LD50) rating of 2,660 mg/kg body mass, boric acid is poisonous if taken internally or inhaled. Home made ant poison can be made with 1 teaspoon of boric acid and 10 teaspoons of sugar into 2 cups of water then pour it around ant trails. They take it back to the queen, destroying the colony.

    Here is a link that might be useful: Wikipedia.org

  • jwarner191
    13 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    Warnerjk, You should take some chemistry classes, AND DON'T TELL PEOPLE TO PLAY WITH STRONG ACIDS!! I hope people have some common sense and will not go to the automotive or plumbing stores to buy and play with strong acids. Come on!! Boric acid is not a "solution of sulphuric acid and boron"... Boric acid does not even have sulfur in its molecular structure! Many of the things he said in his post are just wrong. Drain cleaner?? Come on. Look it up.

  • raven30
    12 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    how do i get rid of carpetener bees?

  • ilazria
    12 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    In my personal experience, The borax/ sugar water mix has been absolutely amazing. 3 years ago we had a horrible infestation of ants. they were in every room of the house. I tried ant traps, sealing any cracks, keeping everything clean, dusting with cinnamon and red pepper, and even that horrible clear spray bottle stuff (looks like a bottle of window cleaner.) Eventually I found the recipe for the borax/ sugar water, and within 3 days they were all gone.

    What I do is take 1 cup of sugar, 1/2 cup of water, and simmer in a pan on the stove until all the sugar is dissolved. Then I take it off the heat and stir in 1-2 tablespoons of borax. The borax dissolves easily this way. Then I put some in old butter/sour cream/ baby food/ etc. lids and tuck them in various places around the house, making sure it's where the kids and cats can't get to them. Good places are under the stove, under the microwave, behind dressers, in window sills, etc.. I put some in a jar on it's side and tuck it under the back deck. Then I take the rest and pour it right on the ground near any ant hills, or where I see some scurrying. I haven't noticed any damage to my plants because of this.

    If the sugar water isn't working, the ants might be the kind more attracted to grease/fats. Mix about a teaspoon of borax with the grease from 1 lb of cooked hamburger. Just drain the hamburger grease into a metal can and mix the borax in while it is still hot.

    This year I'm trying some in my strawberry bed, as there have been various pests eating my berries. I put some under the boards in my trench/walkways, and some in a yogurt cup on it's side. Just this morning I've noticed that not only are the ants going for it, but there are some slugs stuck in there as well. Even if the borax isn't killing them, I'm sure the sugar water is glueing them to their death. I wonder if a little salt mixed with the sugar water mix, in a shallow bowl, would be even more effective?

  • p-lant
    12 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    Organic, to most people means not man-made -
    at least the marketing definition means not man-made (that doesn't mean not man/woman prepared or assembled)
    because some people dont trust eating synthetic (A compound made artificially by chemical reactions) and artificial stuff, because they dont yet know what they are doing;
    so alternately if plants made plastic, that would be not only probably biodegradable but also considered organic for many because it evolved naturally over time (millions of years) and wasn't forced in some lab (nothing against experimenting safely BTW)

    - the Merriam/Websters definition does say organic is organic evolution - then AFTER that it also says carbon compounds but it says organic evolution 1st and does NOT say ONLY carbon compounds are organic, so carbon compounds may be organic and some may not be but that does not mean all carbon compounds are and that all things that arent aren't; just like we can make diamonds now synthetically or dig them up - one is organic and the other obviously synthetic.

    * for example an inorganic sweetner like Equal or Nutrisweet has aspartame and it will attract bugs and kill them without having to add anything to it - hence why people may want to eat organic and not trust eating synthetic stuff,

    + or you could get some venus fly traps' I would say DE is usu. organic unless we synthetically made it or that unless it fits in to the whole of things it,s un-organic unless we comprehend 100 percent what we are doing and that is light-years away probably; but also we need to experiment to get there . . . )forming an integral element of the whole - is another part of the Websters/Merriam definition for organic(

    but also I would say boric acid and borax are both good multi use products if used smartly, safely, obviously if anything is used to kill bugs you may want to make sure it doesn't go overboard, and they have been used to treat wood for years and other uses, boric acid will get er done and borax may be a tad safer from what I understand,
    I like but I wont eat em

  • daddyrichbb
    12 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    I had a big problem with argentine ants. I used the recipe above to get rid of them. 1 teaspoon regular sugar, 1/3 teaspoon of mule team borax, about 3 drops of water to make it a paste. I used the mixture mostly on the outside because I didnt want to draw more ants inside. When used the ants will initially swarm the mixture and most of the ants will be gone within 24 hours. However, there may be a few straglers roaming around. Anytime I see more than about 4 ants in one spot or a line, this stuff will pretty much wipe them out!

  • j_braden_ieee_org
    12 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    jwarner... you shouldn't be so quick to lecture warnerjk about chemistry. The Borax from a 20 Mule Team box is mostly Borax decahydrate (Na2B4O710H2O), a hydrated sodium salt of Boron. This salt, when combined with a strong acid, will react to form boric acid (H3BO3), water, and another salt. The reaction with hyrochloric acid is Na2B4O710H2O + 2 HCl → 4 B(OH)3 [or H3BO3] + 2 NaCl + 5 H2O, but as warnerjk says, sulfuric acid could also be used. They would just yield different salts as byproducts of the reaction, but both would produce boric acid.

    The caution about trying this at home is certainly valid, though. In addition to the hazards of handling strong acids, with sulfuric acid there's the problem of the release of poisonous hydrogen sulfide gas as the sodium sulfide salt reacts with the air. This is an experiment which should be done under a fume hood in a properly equipped chem lab. And finally, you need to purify the boric acid from the mix of reaction products. If you really want boric acid instead of borax, you're much better off just buying the right product.

  • jpinsl
    12 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    As a follow-up to this thread, a good tip is that companies are required to file "Material Handling Data Sheets" describing their products and ingredients.

    Here's a link to the MHDS for 20 Mule Team Borax:

    It lists the ingredients as:
    SODIUM BORATE DECAHYDRATE (BORAX)

    Here is a link that might be useful: 20-Mule Team Borax MHDS

  • gryknapp_yahoo_com
    11 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    Here in Southern California Argentine ants are a huge pest problem. Frustrated by commercial poisons, I sought and found a recipe that seems to have wiped out a colony which had invaded my home. Try 1/4 teaspoon boric acid, 3 tablespoons water, and 1 tablespoon sugar. WARNING: While the bait is doing its work there will be numbers of ants taking the bait away. Bear with it and leave them alone. Remember, you want to kill the colony, not just the ones you see. Within 24 hours 98% of the ants were gone. There were still a few stragglers on the second day taking bait. Be tenacious. Also, these ants are in your neighbors yards, so any fix is only temporary. At the first sign of ants set the bait out.

  • merrillmck_gmail_com
    11 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    I'm in the middle of using borax as part of an overall plan to eradicate fleas from my pets and home.

    The organic debate is interesting as the term has countless meanings these days. Interior decorators might want the bedroom to look more organic. Organic lettuce versus non-organic lettuce in the grocery store (my biased dictionary translates this to overpriced versus regular priced). And a black-and-white chemistry definition just requires looking for the C in the molecular structure.

    But the real question is how are marketers using the word on packaging and is it a good thing to buy something organic to fight fleas or ants or roaches. Reading jwarner's link on DE, be careful feeling too safe around organic DE! I almost bought it at Home Depot and I'm not one who wears safety glasses and breathing masks ... glad I didn't ...

  • vikinginterests_msn_com
    11 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    have lots of oak trees infested with what appears to be carpenter ants (black) eating the heart of trees, killing them, and of course lots of fire ants-its real sandy here-need help getting rid of them before they (carpenter ants) kill any more trees

  • Kimmsr
    11 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    Marcie, the Presence of Carpenter Ants is a symptom of a problem. The Ants are not the problem.

  • ngalasso_cfl_rr_com
    11 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    Thanks for all the postings, I wanted to get borax for my gardens. I have been having an annoying critter problem. They have dugg up my garden beds every night. I have tried everything on the shelf for racoons and others since I'm not sure what is the guilty culprit. Glad I didnt get the borax.(would have killed my garden and probably left all the critters laughing.........need help on keeping them away.

  • corvetti
    11 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    Thanks for all the great information posted on this site regarding Boric Acid / 20 Mule Team Borax. I had Black Carpenter ants in my house occasionally for 3 years. This year was terrible because of all the rain we had, 6 inches in Western New York. The ants were unbearable. I even hired a professional service, one which is advertised on this site, with no relief. In fact the situation got worse. Tuesday, May 31st I made up the solution of sugar, water and Boric Acid, then soaked cotton balls and strategically placed them where I thought the problem was. I was amazed and I have not seen another carpenter ant since Tuesday evening. Thanks again to everyone for all the valuable information posted on this site. I can now sleep with my eyes closed!!! 8)

  • RoachesHelp
    11 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    Ok, so I am trying to get rid of roaches. We tried roach traps which didn't work and now have an exterminator come every other month. Infestation is very light but they are only in the kitchen on the counters which is disgusting. Our 2 year old daughter keeps getting sick and we think this could be the culprit. From what I am reading boric acid is the thing to use but I am scared to use as I don't want to poison my daughter or our 3 animals. What else can I do, we are desperate!! Help!

  • maybe_nextime_com
    11 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    I've used a mixture of boric acid and peanut butter, this can then be placed into pieces of cut up drinking straws and placed at the back of counters, under things and out of reach of children and pets. My parents had little red sugar ants? and they tried professional exterminators, and many other products, my dad read someplace about the straw filled boric acid peanut butter mix, a few weeks later....NO ants, since then I've tried it and it works great.

  • jksellers
    10 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    I found something I don't think is widely known. These new cat treats that cats go crazy about are VERY GOOD for ant bait because the ants go crazy about them too. As an experiment I ground up two small treats, each the size of a pea and put it near where I saw two or three ants. Within an hour there were 3 or 4 hundred ants. I have never seen them swarm so quickly or in that amount.

    Of course, you MUST be careful to protect the site where you put the poison so that the cat won't get to it.

  • maria123053
    9 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    one cup sugar 3 Tbsp boric acid 3 cups warm water mix store in jar soak cotton balls with this mix and set cotton ball in lid they will eat and take back to nest :0

  • Kimmsr
    9 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    Cockroaches need to ingest, eat, the Boric Acid for it to work and that most often happens after they walk through some and then groom themselves. The first step in controlling cockroaches is a good clean up, making sure there is no food source for them. Cockroaches will eat any and every thing. Once the clean up has been done then Boric Acid chrystals should be spread around where the cockroaches are so they will walk through the chrystals.

    Here is a link that might be useful: About cockroach control

  • robin.58
    7 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    I have heard somewhere to rid your home of termites use one cup 20 mule tam borax to one gallon of HOT water spray unfinished wood to run off, let dry and do two more times. You'll never have termites or carpenter ant issues again. Has anyone tried this ?

  • Kimmsr
    7 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    Termites tend to eat the wood in the interior of a board so a surface treatment described above would not be very effective in controlling them. The best way to control Carpenter Ants is to keep the wood dry since they prefer wet wood.

  • icam_1346
    4 years ago

    Hoosiergirl... the molecule of borax or boric acid that kills insects is the boron molecule. It takes decades to degrade. Air moisture might cause clumping of the powder and unable to stick to the legs of insects crawling across it but it will remain active as a killing agent for decades. another user, for termites or ants... HOT water is used because boric acid has a low soluble point in water. Using hot water increases the amount that can be dissolved in water. The idea behind this is to dissolve as much boric acid in water as possible then water log the wood so it absorbs the boron molecules. So the insects that eat the wood also eat the poison. It is effective and treated wood you would buy at a store use that method along with pressing it more to make it harder and harder for insects to bite.

  • Mustapha
    4 years ago

    1. Is a teaspoon of Borax per two plants going to hurt the zucchini? Gardening book said it was good.

    2. Cotton balls, one cup water, half-cup sugar, two tbsp. Borax mixture wiped out major ant infestation overnight. Dissolve sugar in warm water, add Borax, soak cotton balls, leave in strategic places. Source: Wellmade Remedies

  • dchall_san_antonio
    4 years ago

    Boron is a micronutrient only. If you get too much of it, it will become poisonous. It can kill the soil, plants, ants, roaches, etc. Whether you will hurt the zucchini depends on how much boron is already in your soil. If you live in the town of Boron, California, then you already have too much boron in your soil (check it out on Google Maps). Otherwise you cannot know if it will help unless you have a soil test showing the boron levels.