How to get rid of bees in the backyard

Written by kimbry parker
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How to get rid of bees in the backyard
Bees are beneficial to flowers and plants, but bothersome to people. (flower & 2 bees image by redrex from

Although bees are an important part of our ecosystem, they often become a nuisance in the yard. A bee sting is painful, and some people are even allergic to bees and experience harmful side effects if stung. In order to remove bees from the yard, it is necessary to also get rid of their nest; if the nest remains, bees will only return to the yard. The least toxic approach to killing bees is using dish soap or borax powder; commercial bee killers and pesticides will also get rid of bees; however, these products often contain ingredients that are toxic.

Skill level:

Things you need

  • Bucket
  • 1/2 gallon water
  • 6 Tbsp liquid dish soap
  • Large stick
  • Borax powder
  • Commercial bee killer or pesticide

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  1. 1

    Purchase a commercial bee killer or pesticide. These products are sold at most garden centres and home improvement stores.

  2. 2

    Spray the beehive with the pesticide. Do this in the evening for best results. Make sure to thoroughly soak the area with the product. The bees will likely swarm as soon as the nest is sprayed, so use caution to avoid getting stung.

  3. 3

    Reapply the spray the next evening as well. This will ensure that all the bees are gone.

  4. 4

    Knock down the beehive with a large stick once all the bees are dead and gone. Dispose of the hive in an outdoor trash bin.

  1. 1

    Fill a bucket with 1/2 gallon of water. Add 6 Tbsp of liquid dish soap to the bucket. Use your hands to stir up the soap and water.

  2. 2

    Dump the whole bucket of water directly onto the nest. It is best to wait until night, when the bees are all in the hive. This will ensure that the largest number of the bees are affected. Make sure when dumping the water to get as much on the entrance of the hive. Leave the area promptly after dumping the water on the hive.

  3. 3

    Repeat this process for a few nights or until you notice there are no more bees coming and going from the hive. Knock down the nest with a large stick once you are sure no more bees are alive inside. Discard the nest in an outdoor trash bin.

  1. 1

    Sprinkle borax powder in areas where the bees come and go. This includes trees, bushes, flowers, around decks and patios or anywhere else you see the bees. The powder will stick to the bees and they will carry it back to their nest.

  2. 2

    Sprinkle a generous amount of borax powder directly into the nest as well. Apply the borax powder during the daytime, when the bees are away from the nest, to avoid getting stung.

  3. 3

    Repeat this process for several days, or until you notice the bees are gone. If it rains, it is especially important to reapply the borax powder. Within a few days, you will notice there are no more bees hanging around.

  4. 4

    Knock down the hive and dispose of it once you are certain the bees are gone.

Tips and warnings

  • An alternative is to contact a local beekeeper to remove the bees from your yard.
  • Remove water sources from the yard that the bees may be using.
  • Hang mesh bags filled with mothballs in various spots throughout the backyard. The mothballs will deter bees from coming around.
  • Wear protective clothing and gloves when trying to get rid of bees.
  • Commercial bee killers and pesticides often contain toxic ingredients. Handle these products carefully. Avoid getting the spray into your eyes or mouth. Keep these products away from children.

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