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How to Get Rid of Ground Wasps?

There are several online resources to educate you on how to get rid of ground wasps. However, you must be cautious of the control methods you decide to use.

March 8, 2022

11 min read time

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How to Get Rid of Ground Wasps

A ground wasp is a frightening insect with stings that can cause several allergic reactions.

Even though they are often found inside bushes and trees, they nest in the ground sometimes. This exposes your garden to a risk of infestation.

What must you do when this happens? How can you get rid of these pests?

This article provides you with everything you need to know about Ground wasps and measures that can keep them away from your property.

But before we dive into how to get rid of ground wasps fully, let’s first show you how to identify them. That way, you don’t go about treating the wrong pests.

There are several species of ground wasps.

However, the most common types in North America are the scoliid wasps, digger wasps, sand wasps, cicada killer wasps, and spider wasps.

They are not so hard to identify.

They feature small body lengths, which could range from 0.6 to 2 inches. They have a coloration that comprises stripes of brown, yellow, red, and black shades. Female wasps sting due to the presence of a poisonous gland located close to the end of their abdomen.

How to Get Rid of Ground Wasps

These pests can be divided into social and solitary groups. Social wasps live in colonies – often more than 500 insects – and serve a queen who controls them.

To protect their nests, they sting people. Their colonies often last for only one year and are defended fiercely by adults who will be more likely to attack intruders by inflicting numerous stings on intruders.

On the other hand, a solitary wasp builds a nest in the ground just for itself. It also provides its food and lays its larvae alone. In most cases, these wasps employ their stinging mechanisms to paralyze and trap their prey.

Even though several ground wasps can sting, they rarely do so except they are disturbed.

How Do They Appear on Your Property?

The location of a nest depends mainly on the queen’s preference. If the soil of a particular area is perfect for them, they take shelter there.

People often ask: Do wasps live underground?

Yes, they do.

They can choose to build their nests in an abandoned animal hole, under tree roots, or in an anthill. If your backyard has sandy or loose soil, these pests can dig tunnels and seek shelter there.

If you wish to understand why they appear in your garden, you must also consider their diets. Adult wasps feed on fruits and soft berries.

If you do not get rid of fallen fruits on the ground, the smell of the fermented juice might attract these pest insects.

Are Ground Wasps Dangerous?

First, you must understand that these insects serve some usefulness in gardening. Their larvae feed on proteinous food that often comes from roaches, caterpillars, or butterflies.

As a result, a typical wasp helps you eliminate all forms of harmful insects in your garden. For instance, cicada killer wasps will reduce the number of cicada insects on your property.

Despite their ability to help regulate other pests, most wasps are still dangerous. European beewolf wasps, for instance, feed on bees. Their larvae alone can consume up to 6 bees. As such, they can cause severe damage to an apiary.

However, the main risk posed by ground wasps, especially the social wasps like yellow jackets, is their aggressive nature.
They defend their nest actively when they sense the slightest threat.

Therefore, they can sting if you disturb them.

Their stings are painful and could result in a skin reaction. Several ground wasps bites could lead to suffocation and anaphylactic shock.

Moreover, wasps do not die while on the attack. They can sting multiple times in a row.

How Do I Get Rid of Ground Wasps Naturally?

There are several online resources to educate you on how to get rid of ground wasps. However, you must be cautious of the control methods you decide to use.

Do not ever think of getting rid of wasps by using fire directly or near their nest. These aggressive creatures might render you covered with stings.

You need to be even more careful if you’re allergic to their venoms.

Not to worry, some effective methods can help you get rid of ground wasps naturally.

These include:

1. Maintaining your lawn to discourage ground-nesting wasps

Ground wasps often build their nests in sandy, loose soil. An easy method to chase these pests away from your lawn is to ensure that your yard is covered in grass. Besides this, watering it regularly is also a good idea.

Once you leave your lawn planted thickly and properly soaked, it becomes harder for wasps to dig their nests in the ground. A typical ground wasp also likes nesting in sunny locations.
So, you can motivate them to seek refuge somewhere else by building a shade garden.

2. Make your yard less attractive for ground wasps

Before choosing to take extreme measures to get rid of a wasp, you can try to remove its food sources since they can easily attract your garden.

You can keep wasps away once you cover up or clear away food – especially sweet foods and meats – once they are not needed anymore. Similarly, cover all bins and trash with fitted lids.

To ensure that your garden stays completely free of ground wasps, eliminate your yard’s appeal for these insect pests by avoiding perfumes and all floral patterns.

However, this implies that hummingbird nectar and other kinds of bird food must also be removed.

3. Repel ground wasps away with plants

Even though a typical wasp is attracted to nice-smelling flowers, certain plants these ground pests can’t stay close to.

These plants present a good method to repel wasps nesting naturally. Irrespective of how you choose to distribute these strong-scented plants across your lawn, this wasp pest control offers effective means to remove these pests.

Furthermore, you must know that wormwood is poisonous to animals, humans, and plants. As a result, it is not a good option, especially if you have small children or pets.

4. Remove these insects by sealing any wasp nest

Ground Wasps are known to spend so much time underground, especially during the night.

As a result, one of the easy ways to get rid of ground wasps is to cover their nest. This will effectively remove them from your property.

Here is how to go about it.

First, identify the ground wasps nest. Once you identify their nests and entry and exit points, cover these openings with a layer of packed soil or a clear bowl.

Ensure that you wear protective clothing and also carry out this pest control measure during the night. You can also consider filling up all abandoned burrows before these pest insects use them as nesting sites.

How Do I Get Rid of Ground Bees and Wasps?

Besides the fact that their stings might be dangerous, the buzzing sound of these insect pests is also irritating. As such, homeowners have come up with different methods to eliminate wasps and bees. Some of these include:

1. Use a bellows hand Duster 

This is an effective tool for killing burrowing wasps.

Besides, the bellows hand duster is also one of the easiest and most practical methods that you can employ to eradicate a wasp nest.

All you have to do is pour your home remedies into the tool and spray it on the bee or wasp nest.

The equipment features a rubber siphon and an elongated metal tube with a narrow end measuring 6 inches. This enables you to spray remedies to places that are quite difficult to reach.

It would be best not to fill the container, as you would need a little space to allow for easy spraying.

2. Use a Tempo Dust Insecticide BA1011

This is your go-to solution if you want to eliminate ground wasps using the chemical method. The Tempo Dust contains 1% cyfluthrin and is so efficient that it helps take care of small insects destroying your ground.

The insecticide can be used along with the bellow hand duster mentioned above to destroy any bee or wasp nest. However, do not throw caution in the wind while using this insecticide because Cyfluthrin is toxic, and overexposure to it may cause headaches and irritation.

The recommended amount should be no more than 1 lb per 1000 square feet. Also, ensure that you read the manufacturer’s guide before use.

3. Employ Sevin ready-to-use 5% dust

This is an insecticide powder that can get rid of ground wasps. By making up a 5% carbaryl insecticide composition, destroying these pest insects will not be an issue. It is best suited for those battling a severe infestation and wants something that can have a lasting effect.

Again, kindly note that this chemical can pose a serious threat to beneficial insects, including earthworms, ground bettors, and bees. Thus, it would be best to use it pointwise and should be applied directly on wasps nests.

4. Use Thanos Wasp Trap

Thanos wasp trap will help to get rid of the ground wasps effectively.

What Does A Ground Wasp Nest Look like? 

Identifying wasps nests in the ground is not so difficult. They usually take the form of a cone-shaped pile of mud in the ground with a huge entrance on top.

These pests can settle well in cracks in the ground or inside rodent burrows. So, their nests are not easily noticeable. This means that you need to observe their behavior patiently to locate their nests.

What kind of wasps live in the ground?

The ground provides shelter and food to different kinds of pests.

So, it is not uncommon to see other kinds of wasps dwelling on your ground.

Some of the common species of ground wasps that nests in the ground are:

1. Yellowjackets

Yellowjackets love to build their nests in the ground. For instance, the Eastern Yellowjackets often excavate the soil from old holes to widen the cavity and make it spacious for developing colonies.

Yellow jackets belong to the Vespidae family, a classification of insects with longitudinally folded wings while at rest. Besides this, yellow jackets have pronotums that extend to the regular, which looks like triangles when viewed from a lateral position.

2. Digger wasp

This name is given to any wasp that belongs to the Crabronidae and Sphecidae families. These pests depend heavily on dirt for shelter, protection, and storing their food.

Just like other wasps, they have a distinct waist and two pairs of wings. Some digger wasps have a narrow segment that connects their abdomen and thorax.

However, others have no waists at all.

Furthermore, while some digger wasps are social – which implies that they build colonies and have queens that direct them, others are solitary, i.e., their females stay alone in a very small ground nest or hole. This kind of wasps makes up the majority of the ground wasps order.

3. Cicada killers

These wasps are often mistaken to be hornets due to their color. They have yellow and black stripes on their abdomen. A typical cicada killer wasp can grow as big as half of the finger of an adult.

These insects got their name from their diet. They tend to hunt down cicadas as soon as they get to a given area to control their population, which benefits the trees these cicadas feed on.

Note that cicada killer wasps are solitary. They opt not to work alongside other wasps within the same species. A female digs a burrow herself and raises her young there.

How Does Vinegar Get Rid of Wasps?

Getting rid of ground wasps from your property can be done via several methods.

However, vinegar is one of the many simple household products to control ground wasps without using pesticides. These insects have a strong sense of smell that helps them locate their food sources, and you can use this knowledge to your benefit.

Pour a cup of water into a big bowl.

Add a mixture of half a cup of liquid dish soap and two cups of apple cider vinegar. Then, add two cups of granulated sugar into the resulting mixture.

Make sure that bubbles are not formed as you mix the solution.

Next, transfer the vinegar solution carefully into spray bottles or plastic bottles.


Having ground wasps in your home is frustrating and dangerous. Fortunately, there are several methods you can use to eliminate yellow jackets, hornets, ground diggers, cicada killers, and other ground wasps species.

Some of these pests have stinging mouthparts, so you must exercise caution while destroying their nest.

Usually, it would be best to use pest control methods that don’t involve contact with the yellow jacket nest. You may seek the service of a professional exterminator if you’re battling an overblown explosion.

After all, your safety and convenience are paramount in your home. Or you may go with a natural solution if it’s an early-stage infestation.

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Avatar for Dave Avatar for jerry.peters Avatar for Patricia Avatar for jackbauerled Avatar for Thanos-defender
  1. Avatar for Dave
    Dave says:

    How can one accurately identify ground wasps to ensure they are not treating the wrong pests?

  2. Avatar for Thanos-defender
    Thanos-defender says:

    Ground wasps can be identified by their small body lengths, which range from 0.6 to 2 inches, and their distinct coloration that includes stripes of brown, yellow, red, and black shades.

  3. Avatar for jerry.peters
    jerry.peters says:

    How can one accurately identify ground wasps to ensure they are not treating the wrong pests?

  4. Avatar for Thanos-defender
    Thanos-defender says:

    Ground wasps can be identified by their small body lengths, which range from 0.6 to 2 inches, and their distinct coloration that includes stripes of brown, yellow, red, and black shades.

  5. Avatar for Patricia
    Patricia says:

    What safety precautions should one take when trying to get rid of ground wasps?

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