Are you sharing your kitchen with an army of ants right now? They love sweet things to take back to the nest to feed the queen and babies. They won’t spread disease, but they’re annoying nonetheless. The easiest way to deal with them is to find the source (look for small piles of earth pellets or check out the ants’ route) and pour some boiling water over. Follow up with a few puffs from an insecticidal powder (check it treats ants). If you don’t like the idea of killing them, a sprinkling of cayenne, scented talc or peppermint oil along the skirting boards near the outside door should send them next door!
Either pack away in a spare suitcase, lidded plastic boxes, zip-up plastic bags or those storage bags that hook up to the vacuum cleaner hose to extract air and create an airtight seal (they reduce the volume to about 50 percent, are available cheaply from Argos and can be reused). Fold or roll clothes and wrap in acid-free tissue paper to prevent creasing.
When your case, box or bag is full, sprinkle the top with rosemary, lavender, bay or pieces of cedar to deter moths and other unwelcome critters. Store either on top of the wardrobe, in a drawer under the bed, in a spare room or dry loft.
Commonly known as woolly bears, they’re quite common in spring. They look like maggots with brown hairs (hence the name). As they hatch they munch through their surroundings, leaving holes in the way clothes moths do.
Check for damage to clothes in wardrobes and chests of drawers, carpets and rugs. Wash or dry clean affected items and vacuum carpets thoroughly (empty the bag straight away).
Buy Rentokil Insectrol Dust for Carpet Beetle from hardware shops. Once you’re rid of them, make sure you clean well, removing fluff and dust from under and behind furniture, and vacuum carpets thoroughly.