Howard's Roach Control Program
Roach control is a five-step process:
1. Exclusion. Keep them out of your house. Most roaches like it outside until they get hungry, can't find anything tasty there, and walk in through a house's holes or cracks to feast on the water and food crumbs left from dinner. To stop them, use caulking, steel wool, and copper mesh to fill the cracks in masonry, spaces between trim and brick, and holes of all kinds, including spaces around pipes. Put wire screens in air vents and stop up any other entryways.
2. Elimination of cracks. Fill cracks and crevices inside the house. One of the best weapons against roaches is the caulk gun. Every time you fill in a crack with caulk, you reduce the number of roaches that your home can support. Roaches will not mate unless they are nestled in the security of a very small space. A 1/8-inch-wide crack is too wide for roach comfort.
3. Removal of cardboard boxes. The honey-combed design of cardboard offers miles of tunnels that are perfect hiding and mating spaces; the glue on cardboard boxes and on paper sacks is attractive food for these critters.
4. Cleanliness. Eliminating food and water sources such as dripping faucets, leaks, pet water and food, and dirty kitchens makes your home much less attractive to roaches.
5. Baits. Once the roaches are in the house, there's a two-step attack. Boric acid dusted lightly where the bugs are seen is very effective, but use light dustings. If you can see the material after an application, so can the roaches--so you've put out too much. Diatomaceous earth products also work well. Effective homemade baits can be made by mixing one part sugar and one part Arm and Hammer detergent. A pinch of boric acid added to this mix makes it even more effective. This mixture has extremely low toxicity, but it still should be put in bait stations or lids and located in areas where pets and children can't get to them. Stronger baits can be made by mixing two parts flour, one part boric acid, and one part sugar and moistening enough to form little balls or cakes. Add more moisture from time to time to keep them more appetizing. Always keep all pesticides, even these organic home remedies, away from the pets and the kiddos.
6. Spray. The best organic sprays for roaches are the citrus products.