Will Bleach Kill Ground Bees? These Other Solutions May Be Better!

Will bleach kill ground bees?

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Bees seem to be everywhere, don’t they? They’re not just hiding out in a hive. Did you know that some bees nest in the ground? If you’re having problems with this type of bee then you’ve probably been thinking of the best way to get rid of them. Bleach is a very powerful and potent household cleaner that many people use as an insecticide. But will bleach kill ground bees?

Bleach will get rid of ground bees and all you need to do is fill their nesting hole with a bleach and water solution. However, there are other methods that you may prefer to use.

In this guide, we will look at the effectiveness of using bleach to kill ground bees as well as giving you some alternative solutions to this pesky problem.

What Are Ground Bees?

Ground bees are sometimes called miner bees or digger bees and these are bees that don’t live in a hive but make their nests in the ground. Usually, these are solitary bees who just want somewhere to lay their eggs and raise their young. There will typically be a queen living on her own somewhere underground.

These bees create their nests with entrances on the surface of the ground.  These entrances can normally be identified by looking for small patches of bare soil or little piles. While they are solitary with only one bee per nest, you will find that female ground bees nest alongside one another. So, where there is one ground bee, there will be several others in the vicinity.

A lot of people get instantly concerned when they notice ground bees in their yard. But aside from a very small aesthetic interruption to your garden, they’re not harmful in any way.

The queens are quite docile and are not known to sting very often. In fact, unlike other bee species, they’re not particularly fussy about defending the nest.

However, the male of the species is a little more aggressive as it’s his job to patrol the local area to make sure that the females and their eggs are kept safe from predators and other threats. But while they might show aggression, you don’t need to worry about being stung as the males don’t have a stinger.

It’s worth considering whether you really want to get rid of ground bees, should you find them as they are beneficial creatures. For example, it has been demonstrated that these insects might even improve the quality of the soil because of aeration. Once they have finished nesting, they’ll abandon the hole which will soon fill back up so they won’t be around for long.

Can I Use Bleach To Kill Ground Bees?

Bees are actually attracted to bleach water. If you add a small amount of household bleach to your garden water that you’re using to attract bees then more will certainly show up.

However, it is possible to use bleach to kill ground bees by drowning them in the solution. But you could just as easily use any other liquid as it isn’t the chemicals in the bleach that get the job done. The fact that you will submerge the ground bees in this solution is what’ll finish them off.

If you do want to try using bleach to kill ground bees then you will need to locate their nesting hole. Take a solution of four parts water and one part bleach and pour this into the hole to drown the bee.

Other Methods For Getting Rid Of Ground Bees

If you don’t want to use the bleach method then there are several other substances that you will likely have at home that can be used to kill ground bees. We would urge you to consider other methods as ground bees are an important part of the ecosystem, but we will look at this in a little more detail later on. For now, here are some tried and tested ways to kill ground bees.


It’s easy to make a home bee killer by mixing one part vinegar with three parts water and adding this solution to a spray bottle. This is a very effective method that will quickly and efficiently kill off any ground bees that are causing an issue.


If you have some spare gas lying around then you can use this to eradicate ground bees. Of course, it goes without saying that this is a highly flammable liquid and you’ll need to be very careful when using it.

While it can be tempting to pour the gasoline directly into the hole, this will contaminate the ground around it. Instead, you should soak an old rag in fuel and then place this inside the hole.

Diatomaceous Earth

Another great way to kill ground bees is to sprinkle a generous amount of diatomaceous earth around the entrance of the hole. It will take a few days to take effect but the substance will eventually kill off the ground bee by dehydrating it.


Ammonia’s strong odor and alkaline nature are what will finish the ground bees off. To use this method, you will need to pour an amount of ammonia into the nesting hole and wait for it to take effect.

Ways To Get Rid Of Ground Bees Without Killing Them

You may find it difficult to kill ground bees based on your morals so this leads you to question whether there are ways to remove ground bees without killing them. The good news is that there are plenty of natural ways to deal with these pests without causing them any harm.


Ground bees do not like the strong scent of ground cinnamon so you can use this to get them to flee their nest. Just sprinkle a generous amount around the entrance and let it work its magic.

Wet The Soil

When ground bees burrow, they like to do this in dry soil as wet soil means less chance of surviving in the nest. Wetting the soil, will deter the bee and encourage it to find another spot.

Block Their Entrance

If you have ground bees then you can prevent them from returning simply by covering the entrance to their holes. Make sure that the bee is definitely not in the nest and then use whatever you have available to block their way back in. They’ll have no other choice but to move on and find somewhere else to lay their eggs.

Other Strong Scents

While cinnamon is a proven way to repel ground bees and many other insects, there are other things that have a pungent odor that’ll be sure to handle your bee problem. Things like mint essential oil spray, garlic and ginger all work very well.

Is It OK To Kill Ground Bees?

We all know that bees are under threat; there’s a lot in the news and on social media about saving the bees. So, this leaves you with the moral question of whether you should kill ground bees or just leave them alone.

As we discussed earlier, these bees won’t do any harm to your garden. Yes, the entrances to the nesting holes might not look great but that’s about the extent of things. Moreover, the females have stingers but are unlikely to hurt you unless they feel very threatened. That said, if you want to allow them to nest in peace, it might be best to avoid letting children and pets play in the area.

Ground bees, just like pretty much all other types of bees, are pollinators and it doesn’t take us to tell you how important pollinators are. For this reason, it is advisable not to kill ground bees where possible and to use one of the methods we have discussed to encourage them to move to a new location.

However, we are aware that there may be times that ground bees become a real problem, or even dangerous, and in this case, you may have no other choice but to kill them. Just make sure that you only do this as a last resort.


If ground bees are a problem in your garden, there are many things you can do to get rid of them, including several natural and harmless methods. But sometimes, the bees may become so much of a problem that you have to kill them. So what can you use? A lot of people turn to household bleach but will bleach kill ground bees?

Bleach is an effective way to kill ground bees as pouring it into the nest will drown the bees. However, vinegar mixed with water seems to be an even more effective way to kill ground bees and is preferred by a lot of homeowners.

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