Home Invasion!

Home Invasion!

Gregory Han
Jul 17, 2007

Mondays are bad enough as it is. But coming home last night to a house infested with ants and one fat cockroach (this looked like a NYC sized roach) scampering inside the trash made for a most unwelcome homecoming. The hot weather must have driven the six-legged intruders en masse into our kitchen looking for water and crumbs (a closed jar of white honey also got their attention). Emily and I spent all of the evening emptying everything from under the sink, washing every nook and cranny, scrubbing the floors with soap and lemon juice, and sealing off any visible cracks or crevices into our kitchen with some DAP Kwik Foam.

While I was cleaning and sealing, Emily worked on creating a natural inspect repellent sachet with the following common kitchen ingredients and some old hosiery:

    cayenne powder (Achoo! Ants dislike cayenne as much as your nasal passages)
    catnip (contains the chemical compound nepetalactone; Iowa State University researchers found nepetalactone to be 100x more effective at repelling cockroaches than DEET, a common (and toxic) insect repellent!)
    bay leaves
    ground cloves

We've also read that hedgeapples are effective insect repellents, lasting from 2-3 months in an air-conditioned room. We'll see if our cleaning and repellent works before resorting to traps. If there's any incentive to keep our kitchen spic and span, this was it!

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