While it is important that every area of your home is clean and insect-free, the kitchen is at the top of the list! Unfortunately, due to all of the scrumptious things you make there, it is one of the main destinations for household pests and insects.
Keeping that kitchen sparkling clean means ensuring these uninvited guests keep their distance, and it's important to do this without the use of harsh chemicals that can contaminate your food. Just like energy-efficient home improvements are a vital way to stay green, the less harmful chemicals you put out into the environment (and inside of your home), the better.
To help, we've collected five simple eco-friendly home remedies to keep insects out of your kitchen.
Method #1: Keep plenty of fresh basil leaves
If flies are your primary menace, fresh basil plants near your kitchen windows are a great remedy. The smell keeps flies at bay, keeps your kitchen smelling fresh, and you can also use them in your cooking for a flavor boost! Fresh basil is a win-win all around.
Method #2: Add in some bay leaves
Like method one, dried bay leaves keep wood pests and silverfish out of your kitchen cabinets. Keep a few bay leaves in the corners of the cabinets, or use scrap cloth to make a sachet that can hold the leaves and hang inside your wooden cabinets. To strengthen the smell, add a few cinnamon sticks into the sachets as well.
Method #3: Ants hate your morning coffee
Unlike most of us, ants are not coffee enthusiasts. If you see ants moving around in your kitchen, you need to act quickly before the problem grows significantly bigger. Use coffee grounds sprinkled around the windows and the entry points to stop them from marching into your kitchen.
You can also ward off ants with vinegar and essential oils like peppermint or citronella. Just wipe your kitchen counters (especially around the edges) and the wall areas with these elements for an additional protective barrier.
Method #4: Use lemon spray for spiders
While a few spiders around the home is actually a great way to discourage other pests, too many can be a problem. You can create an all-natural spray that mixes essential oils of lemon or orange with soapy water. Place around five drops of either oil in an ounce of water, then pop it into a spray bottle and spritz it around the kitchen. This will keep away spiders if you focus it around the cracks in your kitchen walls.
You can even use the leftover lemon and orange peels to prevent a visit from moths and other pests by leaving them in the corners of your cabinets.
Method #5: Eucalyptus Oil is a must
Eucalyptus oil is great for keeping away pests and also clearing out your sinuses! It has a sweet, pungent smell that you can apply in your kitchen via an undiluted oil (wipe the kitchen counters with it) or mixed with water in a spray bottle to spritz around the place.
When the water dries, the eucalyptus oil will evaporate and keeps flies and bugs away while also making your kitchen smell fantastic. You'll also feel pretty refreshed, especially during the flu season.
Enjoy your pest-free kitchen!
The biggest thing that bugs hate is cleanliness. This works well for us as we should always strive to have a clean kitchen anyway! Be sure to keep your kitchen dry, as moisture is an ideal condition for pests to breed. Clear the scraps and rubbish, and apply this rule to the rest of your home as well. You can always hire an affordable dumpster to get rid of bulk rubbish during a big clean as well.
Finally, sunlight is a fantastic natural way to make your kitchen germ-free. Let as much in as you can to discourage mold, and regularly dust your shelves and throw away unused foodstuff frequently. If you still encounter pest problems after trying all of these methods, consult a pest control professional to get to the bottom of the issue.