How to Keep Wasps Away from Your Property

Getting rid of wasps can be a real struggle once they get settled into a new colony. Tenacious, and dangerous when provoked, it is absolutely not recommended for you to try to remove a wasp nest without the help of pest control experts. That’s why wasp prevention is key.

Here are some of the best ways to prevent wasps from ruining your summer barbecues, without stirring up a hornets’ nest.

How to Prevent Wasps from Building Nests

In the fall, a queen wasp goes into hibernation as her workers die off from the cold. When she awakens in the summer, she sets out to build an entirely new nest from scratch. What this means is that you have a wasp prevention grace period in the early summer to find and get rid of prime nest locations before a queen can set up shop.

Common locations for wasp nests are hollow tree trunks, eaves, railings, overhangs and even your child’s play house. There are a variety of natural repellents you can use to keep wasps away from prime nesting locations, in particular peppermint oil or dish soap.

One particularly cunning trick to stop wasps from moving in is setting up a commercially available decoy wasp nest somewhere visible on your property. Wasps are highly territorial, but they’ll respect another colony’s territory.

Maintain Your Yard

Once you take care of the obvious wasp nest locations, you need to think about how to prevent wasps from other people’s properties from making their way onto yours. In other words, you have to keep the rest of your yard inhospitable to them. Luckily, that just means doing the yard maintenance you should already be doing anyways.

This includes keeping shrubs and trees pruned, clean up leaves and grass clippings, remove standing water from bird baths and rain gutters to cut off their water sources, and don’t keep surgery drinks and foods outside longer than they have to be.

Because of their sweet tooth (or mandibles), wasps love to hover around garbage cans hoping to get a lick of any coke stains on the side or such. That means you should always make sure your trash can lids are secured and that they’re frequently hosed off.

How Not to Stop Wasps

Once a nest has fully established itself, it becomes extremely dangerous to even go near it. While there are many myths about how to keep wasps away, they can be inaccurate and unsafe. For instance, using liquids to drown out a ground nest is ineffective as tunnels go down lower than you would expect, and chances are the queen will survive to nest again.

Attempting to vacuum them out with a shop-vac is also more likely to land you in a hospital ward than to stop wasps. The best way how to keep wasps away is simply prevention, as discussed above. But when that fails, Terminix Canada is here to help.


For 20 years, Terminix Canada’s bee hive and wasp nest removal services have helped thousands of Torontonians keep themselves and their families safe from potentially life-threatening attacks.

We use special insecticidal dust to neutralize hives and environmentally-friendly insecticides to make underground wasp nests uninhabitable. Contact us today to make the wasps plaguing you buzz off.