The Southern Nest Blog

Getting rid of pests and making porches cute.

Getting rid of pests and making porches cute.

It’s gorgeous outside here!  But, if you are like me, you are already battling the wasps and ants that demand to invade our pretty spaces.  I brought our freshly-bloomed peonies inside and I was excited to have them fill my house with that signature sweet smell.  But of course….within moments, tiny sugar-ants began crawling out!  I remembered reading somewhere that they despise cayenne pepper, so I poured it on top of each flower.  It went straight into the pockets formed by each petal and  dropped down to the bud.  See the tiny red dots on the petals below?  Pepper. 🙂

I laid them on a table outside for a few moments.  When I came back, little ants were gathered underneath the flower.  It’s so hard to see in this photo, but if you look at the part where the stem meets the…green thing?…there are tiny black clusters.  Those are the ants!  I shook the flower to get them off (and maybe gave a flick or two) and they scurried on their merry way.  And, no ants inside the flower once I brought it in.   I was thrilled!  Normally I dunk the flowers in water, only to end up with saggy blooms and bugs coming from hiding spots.


While I am on this anti-pest mission, I must share.  I feel as though I stumbled on the greatest advice I have ever seen.  On one of my “mommy groups” on Facebook, one woman asked about ways to deter wasps and similar bugs.  About 5 women shared that they used brown paper bags every year.  Their trick?  Find those areas of the yard that they seem to always nest in, and beat them to it.  A puffed up brown bag resembles the texture of a hive, sending the message that another wasp has made that spot its home.  They said that was enough to deter them.  I tested the theory and they were right!  I hung the bags in two out of four corners under our canopy.  Guess where they will NOT go?  We haven’t seen nearly as many stingers as we do normally.  I plan to put bags on the other two corners and hopefully eliminate them entirely.


In other news, we did some things to spruce the porch up!  First I painted the door with a high gloss black paint.  I wanted it to be very shiny , so I chose to go with a paint from Fine Paints of Europe.  They are the go-to brand (according to the door refinishing experts I found.)  I chose this formula in black.  I can see my reflection in the shine!

I got this lion door knocker from Amazon.  I sprayed it in a high gloss black spray paint and then it was perfect.


Next, I wanted a brilliantly gold kick-plate.  I settled on this one from House of Antique Hardware.  It is steel with a PVD finish, so it will last a lifetime.  And there I am…you can see my reflection in the kick-plate, ha!  I can’t stop looking at those spots of blue paint in the photo below.  I will be outside with Goof-Off tonight.


It’s amazing what a simple switch of your exterior lighting will do.  I found this light with seeded glass at LOWES!   I could not believe it!


Then, last but definitely not least, I got this precious pineapple doorbell.  My father-in-law installed it for me and it has been one of those things that make me happy every time I walk to the front door.


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