DEALING WITH SPIDERS AND OTHER HOUSE CRITTERS NATURALLY


Most people are afraid of spiders, especially in the house, but spiders are actually very beneficial insects that eat other bugs. (Exceptions are the black widow or wolf spiders.) As my husband says, “They are cleaning up the place.”  That said, they can be a nuisance and there are simple, natural remedies that deter them.

The kindest thing of course is to pick them up and put them back outside.  Natural remedies include mixing peppermint or spearmint oils with water in a spray bottle or placing a few undiluted drops along the windowsill to deter them.  You can also mix garlic cloves with water in a spray bottle, a great deterrent for mosquitoes too.  I’ve had good luck with a high tech electronic bug and rodent device, which when plugged into the wall keeps insect pests and mice away.  It works by emitting a high-pitched sound you can’t hear and doesn’t bother pets.  Gaiam Natural Products (www.gaiam.com), home goods or hardware stores sell them.  Orange Guard is a safe spray for cockroaches, ants and fleas and can be used indoors as well as outdoors.  To deter ants, you can simply use your kitchen staples. They have a natural aversion to cucumber, coffee grounds and vinegar.

It’s always best to avoid toxic insecticides.  Learning to live with the occasional critter isn’t so bad; we are all God’s creatures after all.

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