Sprout Pest Control provides several treatment options for the Chattanooga and Northeast Alabama markets. (Photo: Contributed)

Although Ethan Fortner studied business administration in college, he didn’t initially intend to start his own company.

But after working in the pest control industry during college, he launched his own business, called Sprout Pest Control, that specializes in using natural ingredients such as thyme oil, rosemary oil and cedarwood oil to get rid of bugs, insects and rodents.

“Pest control had become an industry centered around eliminating pests, but no one seemed concerned about the means by which this was achieved,” he said. “Pest control is not only about eliminating bugs, but about protecting families, children, pets and the earth in which we live.”


While learning about the industry, he discovered the option of using essential oils, and after he had children, it became more important for him not to come home with chemicals all over him, he said.

Most essential oils are safe to use near fish and bodies of water, which makes them an ideal treatment for spiders around boat docks, he said.

Sprout Pest Control also treats vegetation and gardens with natural products. There are no restrictions on the use of these products, which allows the company to treat heavily in hospitals, day cares, schools, nursing homes and restaurants.

Using the natural products has made Fortner feel better physically because he’s not breathing in chemical fumes, he said.

And he said the natural products work as well as harsher chemicals. He doesn’t get anymore callbacks using natural products than he had otherwise, he said.

The natural products do cost a little more, though, he said.

“I’m not trying to make money … I’m just trying to cover the cost [of offering the natural products],” he said.

Fortner estimated the cost difference is about $5 a month.

Services offered include:

  • Commercial and residential pest control
  • Mosquito reduction services
  • Termite treatment services
  • Flea and tick control
  • Fly control
  • Rodent control
  • Snake repellent programs
  • Home moisture reduction services

For more information about Sprout Pest Control, click here or call Fortner at 423-619-6893.