Before you try to get rid of any flying yellow and black creatures, make sure you’re not dealing with honeybees. Bees are incredibly beneficial to your garden and the environment in general. As a rule, bees won’t nest very close to your home and they are not aggressive unless they feel extremely threatened. Once you’re sure it’s wasps you’re dealing with, try these all-natural ideas.
Don’t Draw Them In
Like many pests, wasps are attracted to food. They especially like foods that are high in sugar and meat products (including dry pet food). If you have a wasp problem, make sure that food isn’t left out and that your trash cans are sealed tight. If you have any hummingbird feeders, you’ll likely want to move them away from the house – as wasps will compete with the birds for the sugary nectar.
In addition, try not to look or smell too much like a flower or they’ll come straight to you. Avoid wearing yellow or white clothing or too much perfume in areas with a wasp problem.
Put up a Fake Nest
Wasps are very territorial creatures, and they won’t build a nest if they think there is another colony already living nearby. In fact, they’ll likely leave if they think someone else has moved into their neighborhood. You can find a fake wasp nest at several online retailers (such as this page on Amazon), or you can make it yourself.
To make one all you need is a paper grocery bag and some good twine. Simply crumple up the bag and hang it up near enough to the existing nest that the wasps will notice it.
Keep them out of the house for only 1₵
Because of their specially designed eyes, most flying bugs (including flies, mosquitos and wasps) will stay away from your doorway if you hang up a sandwich bag filled with water and a penny. Some people claim that this looks like a dangerous spider web to them, some say that the reflection off the water is too bright for their eyes. Whichever is true, this simple trick always works.
Time your Attack Appropriately
If you’re going after the nest using any method, don’t do it in the middle of a summer day. Wasps are much more active – and aggressive – when it’s warm outside. It’s always safest to go after them at night time. Even so, make sure you wear protective clothing and stand as far back from the nest as possible.
In the coldest months of the year, wasps die off all together. This is the perfect time to remove old nests and hang up a fake one so they won’t come back in the spring.
Spray Nests with a Non-Toxic Wasp Killer
Pesticides, even the so-called ‘organic’ ones, can be very dangerous for your plants, pets and children. The good news is, you don’t need poison to kill all the wasps invading your space.
Attach a hose-end sprayer to your garden hose and fill it with dish soap and water. Make sure you wear protective clothing and stand a good distance back from the nest, in case they decide to get aggressive. Let the hose run for a bit to get the suds going, then completely douse the nest in soapy water. The soap will attach to their wings and weigh them down; they’ll eventually suffocate and die off. The ones that survive will leave and build a new nest elsewhere.
Block-off Underground Nests
If your wasps have an underground nest instead of a hanging one, you can kill off the colony by blocking their access to the nest. Figure out where all the entrances and exits are to the nest are, sneak in at night and cover them up with a large bowl (or something similar). Make sure you work the bowl into the ground well enough that it forms a seal. Leave the bowl there for at least a few weeks.
If you want to go a step further, pour soapy water down one of the entrances before covering it with the bowl. This will kill all the wasps inside the nest and the ones who weren’t home will relocate somewhere less dangerous.
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