Skip to Content

Keep Your Sandbox Pest-Free: 8 Tips for Banishing Bugs

Keep Your Sandbox Pest-Free: 8 Tips for Banishing Bugs

Share this post:

This post may contain affiliate links. If you click an affiliate link and make a purchase, I may earn a commission. Also, as an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.

Sandboxes are a fun and safe way for children to play in the yard. However, we all have the same question in mind: “Do sandboxes attract bugs?”

Let’s be real. A sandbox is the last place you want ants crawling around or any other bugs, for that matter. But what do you do if this happens to you? How can you get rid of these bugs?

To figure this out, check out the article below for all the tips you need to know about how to get rid of bug infestations in a sandbox.

Do Sandboxes Attract Bugs?

If you have children, you probably know they love to play in sandboxes. These toys are a fantastic way for kids to get dirty and have fun while playing outside.

Sandboxes also provide a safe place for kids to play and explore without worrying about injury. However, they can be a haven for bugs.

This is because the sand provides shelter for the bugs, which will then lay eggs in it. Does this mean bugs in a sandbox can be dangerous?

Yes, they can be. If you have pets or small children playing in your sandbox, this can be dangerous as they may come into contact with the bugs and their eggs.

However, some bugs are more dangerous than others.

While some bugs, such as ladybugs or bees, are harmless, others, like ticks or fleas, can carry diseases and cause allergic reactions in humans and animals.

So it might not be just a painful and irritating bug bite. Some bites and stings can cause serious problems if not treated quickly.

What Kind of Bugs Can You Find in a Sandbox?

Most people don’t think about what kind of bugs you can find in a sandbox. In fact, most people don’t think about bugs at all unless they’re trying to kill them!

The truth is that many different kinds of bugs live in or around sandboxes. They’re attracted to the moisture, dirt, and warmth of the sand.

However, the kind of bugs that come to a sandbox can vary depending on the time of year and where you live.

You can find all kinds of bugs living rent-free in your sandbox, the most common of which are:

1 – Ants

Ants are common in sandboxes because they eat the crumbs that drop from children’s hands and lunch bags. They also love to munch on spilled juice boxes and other liquids.

In addition, ants enjoy moist soil and any decaying organic matter they can eat. This makes it perfect for building their nests in the sandbox in your yard or playground.

2 – Bees and Wasps

Bees and wasps are attracted to moist soil because they need water to survive. Sand is a great place to find moisture, so they might be attracted to your sandbox.

Additionally, these guys love sandboxes because they’re full of dead plant material that the bees and wasps can use as food.

3 – Sand Fleas

Sand fleas are tiny blood-sucking insects that live in warm, sandy areas. They can be found anywhere in the world with sand or soil and a source of fresh water.

These tiny insects may bite your child’s ankles and feet, causing itching and swelling. They’re typically not too dangerous for children but can be very irritating when they bite them.

What to Put in a Sandbox to Keep Bugs Out

If you have kids and a sandbox, you know the struggle of keeping bugs out. To give you a helping hand, here are some tips on how to keep bugs out of your sandbox.

1 – Cover It

Use a lid on your sandbox if possible. Lids help keep the sand dry so it doesn’t get moldy, which attracts all kinds of insects.

You can also try covering your sandbox with a tarp or large plastic sheeting. This should help keep out bugs and other pests.

You’ll need to remove any covering when you want to use the sandbox, but it will help keep things clean when the kids aren’t playing.

2 – Use a Bug Repellent

You can apply bug repellent before letting your child out into the yard/playground area. There are several different types available at home improvement stores and grocery stores.

Therefore, it’s important to read labels carefully before choosing one for your needs

3 – Line the Sandbox Floor

Bugs often get into sandboxes through cracks in the floor of the sandbox or by walking through openings between boards in wooden frames.

If the floor is lined with plastic or newspaper before filling with sand, this will help keep them from entering your child’s play area.

4 – Add Cinnamon to the Sand

Cinnamon has insect-repellent properties that help keep critters out of your child’s sandbox. It smells unpleasant to insects and keeps them away from your kid’s play area.

Sprinkle some cinnamon around or in your sandboxes before letting children play with them to keep bugs away from these areas during playtime.

5 – Clean the Sandbox

To keep bugs out of your sandbox, clean it at least once a week and more often if there’s been rain or sprinkling during playtime.

After each use, remove any food or debris from around or beneath the sandbox with a shovel or garden rake before allowing children back into the area again.

Cleaning out dead leaves and other debris will also help keep bugs away by removing hiding spots for them in your sandbox.

6 – Turn the Sand

Bugs are more likely to nest in damp sand, so turning the sand over will help keep them away.

Turning over the sand also helps aerate it, which helps prevent mold growth and keeps the sand from becoming too compacted.

To turn the sand, use a spade or shovel to mix up parts of the sandbox or flip over all of it with your hands.

7 – Keep the Surrounding Area Clean

Check the area surrounding your sandbox for signs of insects or other pests, such as maggots or flies. Remove any branches or leaves that might be providing shelter for these pests.

This will help prevent them from breeding near your playground equipment, which means less of a chance of them coming into contact with your kids.

8 – Set a No Food Rule

Children love to snack while playing in the sand, but snacks attract bugs and other pests.

To avoid attracting bugs, don’t let your child eat or drink in it—or at least ensure that you clean up any spills immediately.

Do Sandboxes Attract Cats?

Sandboxes are extremely attractive to cats because they have a texture and smell that cats love.

Cats have scent glands on the bottom of their paws that they use to mark territory by leaving behind a “scent signature.”

This scent signature is an important part of feline communication. This is why cats will rub against objects like furniture or blankets, marking these items as part of their territory.

Sandboxes provide a similar function for them—they can rub against them and leave behind their scent signature!

Other reasons why cats are suckers for sandboxes are:

  1. They’re attracted by the scent of the urine of other cats that have visited the sandbox.
  2. Cats love to dig and bury their food and toys. Sandboxes are just one more place for them to do so.
  3. They like to use sandboxes as one big litter box!

What to Put in a Sandbox to Keep Cats Out

The most popular cat toy is a sandbox!

It’s easy to see why: Sandboxes are fun and easy to use, and they can keep a cat busy for hours. However, if you want to keep cats out of a sandbox, there are several options available.

1 – Put up a Fence

A fence will prevent your cats from jumping into it or scratching at the sides of it. The fence should be tall enough so that your cats cannot jump over it, but not so tall that they cannot see over it from outside. You may also want to put some sand in the bottom of the fence so that your cats cannot dig under it when they try to get into their new home away from home

2 – Keep it Covered

A covered sandbox gives your cat fewer places to hide while waiting for an opportunity to pounce on unsuspecting children.

You can use a tarp or old shower curtain to cover the sandbox. You can also buy an inexpensive plastic pool cover at a hardware store.

The plastic will be lighter than a tarp and easier to remove when not in use.

3 – Use a Cat Repellent Spray

The best way to keep cats out of your sandbox is by using a cat-repellent spray. The spray uses natural ingredients that are safe for both humans and pets.

The cat repellent spray comes in an easy-to-use bottle with a nozzle tip that makes it easy to apply onto surfaces where you want to keep cats away.

If you don’t have any cat repellent spray on hand, spray the top of the sand with lemon juice or vinegar. Cats don’t like the smell of citrus, so this might make them think twice about digging in your sandbox.

Final Thoughts

Sandboxes are a great way to keep your children entertained in the yard. They’re also a safe place where you can let your kids play with their toys without having to worry about them getting hurt or destroying anything

However, you wouldn’t believe how many bugs are attracted to sandboxes! This is why I’ve provided you with some useful tips to get rid of the bugs and keep them away from your sandbox.

After all, the more you learn and apply, the more fun your kids will have in their sandbox!


If you want more backyard tips including recipes, how-tos and more, make sure you subscribe to my youtube channel

Share this post: