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10 Natural Ways to Get Rid of Bald Faced Hornets

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10 Natural Ways to Get Rid of Bald Faced Hornets

Have you ever been enjoying a nice day outside when you suddenly notice an ominous buzzing sound coming from up high? You glance around nervously and spot a large nest teeming with bald-faced hornets.

Yes, those aerial jerks that look like yellow jackets but instead have black bodies with ivory-colored markings. Uh oh, better head inside before they decide to dive-bomb you for no good reason.

Bald-faced hornets (Dolichovespula maculata) love building their nests in bushes, in the eaves of your home, in a nearby tree, etc. [1]. But don’t worry; in this article, you’ll learn how to send those stinging menaces packing using home remedies and more.

Dangers of Bald-Faced Hornets

These aggressive wasps pack a painful sting, so exercise caution around their nests.

Their colonies can contain over 400 members that are more active and aggressive in defending their nest during the late summer and early fall.

Getting too close can also prove dangerous. Their stings are painful, and the venom can cause life-threatening allergic reactions in some people [2].

How to Get Rid of Bald Faced Hornets Naturally

The best way to avoid getting stung is to steer clear of their nesting areas. Also, never provoke the wasps by throwing objects at or disturbing their nest.

These insects are beneficial predators of garden pests when their nests are located away from human activity. However, if a nest is built in an area where it poses a risk, it’s best to have it removed by a professional exterminator to avoid getting attacked.

Below are some home remedies and organic methods you can also try to help keep them away.

1. Close Off Entry Points

Go outside and inspect the area around where you’ve seen the hornets entering and exiting. Look for any cracks or holes in foundations, siding, attics, crawlspaces, and eaves where they could be getting in.

Once you spot an entry point, seal it up. However, if the opening leads into a wall void or attic, you may need to hire an exterminator to treat the inside to kill the colony.

Blocking access and closing up any cracks or crevices is an easy, DIY method to get rid of a bald-faced hornet problem around your home. By eliminating their access, you’ll force them out in a humane way.

2. Keep Garbage Cans Clean and Tightly Sealed

These flying insects are attracted to open garbage cans that provide easy access to food waste and debris they feed on.

Therefore, make sure all garbage cans, compost bins, and recycling containers have tight-fitting lids that seal completely. This will discourage them.

3. Trim Vegetation

Keeping the vegetation around the house trimmed is one of the best ways to deter baldfaced hornets from building nests near your home.

These stinging pests are attracted to overgrown, brushy areas. By keeping your grass mowed, bushes trimmed back, and shrubs aerated, you eliminate potential shelter and camouflage for bald faced hornet nests.

4. Soap and Water

One popular home remedy to control bald faced hornets is to make a soap and water solution. Fill a 1-liter spray bottle with water and add 2 tablespoons of dish soap.

Spray the soap solution directly on any hornets you see, especially those entering or exiting the nest. The soap will immobilize and kill the hornets not long after.

You can also add a cup of dish soap to a gallon of water and use the soapy water to drench their nests. This method is particularly useful in eliminating small wasp nests.

It’s also best to spray the nest at night, as baldfaced hornets are less active during that time.

5. Hang a False Wasp Nest by Your House

Hang a fake wasp nest near areas where you see these insects flying around. The idea is that the hornets will see the fake nest as competition and build elsewhere.

You can purchase a commercial fake wasp nest that resembles an actual nest.

Alternatively, you can construct your own using brown paper bags. Stuff the bags with newspaper to give them shape and reinforce the entrance.

Attach the fake nest under the eaves of your house, in trees, or on fences where you’ve seen bald-faced hornet activity. These pests are territorial and will build somewhere else if they spot a nest already in the area.

6. Repellent Herbs

Using natural repellents around your home can deter bald faced hornets organically. Planting certain herbs around decks, patios, and play areas creates an unpleasant aroma that keeps away the wasps.

Some of the most effective herbs that repel bald faced hornets include mint, pennyroyal, lemongrass, basil, rosemary, lavender, and thyme.

The strong fragrance of these plants repels these and other stinging insects. You can also crush the leaves to release their natural oils and place them around entry points.

7. Essential Oils

As a natural DIY approach, you can also try using essential oils with a strong scent to keep hornets away.

The strong smell will make the location undesirable and force them to look for a new nesting spot elsewhere.

Some of the most effective essential oils for this purpose include geranium, lemongrass, and clove.

Use them to make a homemade bald faced hornet spray. Just mix 10 drops of each oil in a spray bottle and carefully spray the nests that are already established.

You can also spray it in areas where they frequent to prevent them from building nests.

8. Diatomaceous Earth

Diatomaceous earth kills insects by dehydrating them. It is also very effective against hornets.

Apply diatomaceous earth in dry, powdered form around the entrance of ground nests. You can also pour it in.

The powder will stick to the hornets when they emerge from or return to the nest, dehydrating and killing them.

9. Homemade Trap

Making your own hornet trap is easy. You’ll need a soda bottle, one cup of apple cider vinegar, half a cup of sugar, a teaspoon of dish soap, and pieces of string.

Cut off the top third of the bottle and bore a few holes near the rim to attach the strings. Next, mix the vinegar, sugar, and dish soap until the sugar completely dissolves.

Now pour the solution into the bottle. Finally, hang this homemade bald faced hornet trap in places where you’ll likely find the hornets.

Once the hornets get in for the treat, the soap will coat their wings and prevent them from flying out.

10. Dr. Earth Final Stop Pest Control Killer Spray

This is an organic insecticide that kills bald faced hornets on contact using essential oils like garlic, cinnamon, thyme, and peppermint.

Dr. Earth Final Stop Pest Control Killer Spray works by suffocating the hornets upon direct contact. The oils coat their bodies and block their breathing pores, leading to rapid death.

You can also use it to control chiggers, moths, gnats, centipedes, and other insects.


So there you have it! By following these natural pest control methods, you can make your property less habitable for bald faced hornets in an environmentally friendly way.

Give some of these eco-friendly options a try before resorting to harsh chemicals. With a little patience and persistence, you’ll be enjoying your yard with little or no hornets.

Picture via Flickr

Sasha Brown

Sasha Brown is a blogger and lover of all things natural.

1 comment

  • They come to my oriole feeders and hummingbird feeders, especially yellow jackets. I’ve been stung a few times and chased by them. They’re sooo bad! Do I have to hang my hummingbird feeders elsewhere?

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