Need solution to kill ants in garden

Pauline_MA(z6 MA)June 11, 2003

I have a perennial rock garden and the ants are enjoying it too much. Does anyone know what to use to deter them from building nests? Someone suggested cinnamon - has anyone had luck with that????? HELP!

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hannamyluv(5 N.E. OH)

Cinnamon or chile pepper will do it. I've used chile pepper and it seemed to work.

    Bookmark   June 11, 2003 at 10:13PM
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Find the colony's hill and pour cornmeal (from grocery or feed store) on it. They eat the cornmeal, it expands in their stomachs and blows them up without spreading insecticide or harming other good insects.

Be thankful you aren't fighting stinging red ants in your garden like your southern neighbors are!!

    Bookmark   June 12, 2003 at 9:12AM
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Demeter(z6 NJ)

Also coffee grounds. Since they're such an excellent fertilizer/mulch anyway, go to Starbuck's and get enough grounds to mulch your garden. Pay particular attention to dumping grounds on any anthills you see, but make sure you get some on all the rest of the garden too, to discourage formation of new hills. If they do make new hills, spot treat with more coffee grounds.

    Bookmark   June 12, 2003 at 10:30AM
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Pauline_MA(z6 MA)

Thanks for all the advice - I think I'll try them all - at least my garden will smell good between the coffe grounds and the cinnamon!

    Bookmark   June 12, 2003 at 10:40AM
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butterflydiva(z9 CA,USA)

i DO have fireants, will these ideas work on them? i've tried boiling water and it killed the ones i poured it on obviously, but the rest seemed to just move their mound over a foot....

    Bookmark   June 12, 2003 at 12:37PM
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Demeter(z6 NJ)

Here's another idea: Bluerepper's Super Bug Death Tea!

From the Organic Gardening forum. It's kind of a casual recipe, so you may want to tweak amounts to make what works best for you. You could also add stuff; greengoddess added curry, and Capt. Compost suggested orange oil (probably added after boiling).

Here's the basic recipe:

8-10 cloves garlic
7 or so Tabasco Peppers
A couple spoons of Murphy's Oil Soap
A couple spoons Canola Oil
Habanero sauce
a couple spoons dishsoap

"Throw it all in your mixer or Cuisinart or whatever."

Mix the ingredients with just a little water, then mix with 1 quart hot water (which was noted further down in the thread). Bluerepper let it steep; greengoddess boiled hers. I'd strain the veggie bits out with cheesecloth to make sure your spritzer bottle doesn't get gunked up. Then go to town on the bugs.

For something like a fire ant infestation, the answer seems to be to make a big bunch of this stuff and pour it in the ant nest.

Here is a link that might be useful: Bluerepper's Super Bug Death Tea!

    Bookmark   June 12, 2003 at 1:14PM
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Make a slurry of molasses and boric acid and place near ants.

    Bookmark   June 12, 2003 at 1:34PM
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nutcase(z7 TX)

fire ants:
Ok here I go, you guys will think I am truely a nutcase, but I promise it works! Being in south where fire ants are real problem, I haven't bought any poison or paid a dime to get rid of them in years since finding out about this.

Urine- human urine. Now that you are shocked and/or laughing. It really works. Male or female either one, the human hormones kills the queen and without queen the colony disappears. I didn't believe it when I first heard it but of course since it's free I had to try it and it really does work.

    Bookmark   June 13, 2003 at 3:57PM
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Demeter(z6 NJ)

Applying urine will kill only a few of the surface ants. The nests are so deep (sometimes 10 feet) and so well protected against liquid getting in (so that they don't drown when it rains) that a mere few fluid ounces of urine won't do more than annoy them. If they get annoyed enough, they will move the nest somewhere else.

    Bookmark   June 13, 2003 at 4:31PM
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I have killed fireant mounds with d-limonene, the active ingredient in orange oil. Use 1 tablespoon or a little more in a gallon of water. You can add a little molasses or compost tea, sometimes I do if it's handy. Pour the entire gallon over the UNDISTURBED mound. If you disturb it, the little devils will rescue a few eggs & make more queens. I've heard it's most effective on a hot sunny day, but I've never had it to fail. The brand I find here in north central Texas is Orange TKO.
Good luck!

    Bookmark   June 13, 2003 at 5:35PM
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gardenbug__(texas z8)

We have used instant grits on ants, they eat the grits then they drink water and the grits swell up in them and kill them.

    Bookmark   June 17, 2003 at 10:31AM
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Ha ha, better get your dh to pee on the ants!! Wouldn't want to crouch over a fire ant colony! :>)

    Bookmark   June 18, 2003 at 8:28AM
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nutcase(z7 TX)

LOL deffinately no crouching over the mound!!! That would be hazardous! I do the "collecting" indoors. Not sure how it gets to the Queen down below ground, I just know that it works.

    Bookmark   June 18, 2003 at 10:45AM
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storygardener(5/6 central oh)

These are some good ideas...I'll use them next spring!


    Bookmark   November 9, 2003 at 7:37PM
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Nicotine tea

pros: 1--it's free
2--it works
cons: 1--it's poisonous
2--it's gross

take an empty milk jug, fill with water and cigarette butts.
leave it out in the sun to "brew".
when it's the color of tea, dump it on the mound.

Obviously this will only work if you know a smoker. But it does work, and unlike citrus oil/d-limone (my fav!!!) it won't burn young plants. I might hesitate to use it in a veggie garden, though...

    Bookmark   November 11, 2003 at 2:40PM
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Lots of folks here in AZ have problems with fireants. The nurseries and stores around here sell a product called Amdro. It goes for about $10 or $15, I think. Someone on the Arizona Gardening form said it worked quite well for her in getting rid of fireants.

    Bookmark   November 14, 2003 at 11:55PM
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I have used Amdro. The ants just move. I have never tried urine, orange oil, or cornmeal, but I will now. As a transplanted northerner, until 2 years ago, I had no idea what a problem these fire ants are -- they're horrible!

    Bookmark   November 16, 2003 at 8:45PM
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I know that orange oil stuff works. I had an ant problem in a house i was renting. I sprayed them with the orange clean and watched as they squirmed.

I've heard they don't like rue or pennyroyal.

    Bookmark   December 6, 2003 at 3:29PM
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handsdirty(z5 OH)

Can I use any of the solutions mentioned to get rid of ants in my hypertufa pot? Will it harm the Alpine, Hens/Chicks and another sedum planted in it?

    Bookmark   June 16, 2004 at 8:05PM
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Erinsmom1(z6 OK)

I've been putting cornmeal around my roses for blackspot this year. I watched the tiny black ants carrying it back to their nests and thought how nice they are taking it underground for me. I never thought about them eating it and exploding...........I will go look tomorrow and see how many are left.

    Bookmark   June 22, 2004 at 12:03AM
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Grits do not make ants explode. Adult ants can not consume solids, unless the solids are microscopic in size. Adults feed solids to their larvae which ingest the solds. Then the adults feed of liquid secretions from the larvae.

Many times people think the things they used on the ants worked, because they no longer see the ants, when in reality the ants just moved to another spot or are resting underground after eating all the grits and things the humans gave them.

John Warner, PhD qualified entomologist
University of Florida
Fort Lauderdale Research and Education Center, Ant Lab
3205 College Avenue
Fort Lauderdale, FL 33314

    Bookmark   August 1, 2004 at 8:38PM
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dirtdivarocks(z6 SW PA)

I can't believe I've been FEEDING the ants!!!!!! Thanks for the info. I'll stick to boric acid and molassas.

    Bookmark   August 3, 2004 at 3:31PM
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jennegardens(z5 NY)

borax and sugar water are great to kill ants too!

    Bookmark   August 11, 2004 at 3:28PM
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I've always heard that human urine kills fire ants. Don't know if it's true, but guess you could collect some and pour it on the ant hill to find out. The worst it could do is attract every dog in the county.

    Bookmark   August 11, 2004 at 10:13PM
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Toads :)

    Bookmark   August 12, 2004 at 1:56AM
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John Warner, PhD qualified entomologist
University of Florida
Fort Lauderdale Research and Education Center, Ant Lab
3205 College Avenue
Fort Lauderdale, FL 33314
So if corn meal and grits aren't helping to get rid of the ants what do you suggest we use? I do not like to kill all the good bugs and the lizard and toads and birds with broad spectrum poisons. I have successfully used "ant wars" with the fire ants, but the carpenter ants, the black ants that hold their back ends over their backs and the tiny little black sugar and little red piss ants are driving me totaly crazy. Boric acid (100%) and Terro help in the house but outside I have a constant battle. I could care less what the real names of these little pests are just how to get rid of them with a little harm to the enviroment and other creatures as possible. TIA for advice.

    Bookmark   August 14, 2004 at 10:36AM
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I have a suggestion that worked with fireants; cooking oil
I saved used cooking oil (vegetable) and poured about half a gallon very slowly over a fire ant nest. Their nests are made to withstand water, but not oil, the oil obviously seeped in and "glued" them to the sand; the mound died, didnt move. The grass didnt die, in fact it's way longer now in that spot than in the rest of the lawn. I have tried every ant bait/poison in the market and the mounds only move a couple of feet, this worked. Wish I knew it would work before they killed my persimon tree. I know that since this was edible oil it will breakdown and I think it is more eco friendly than poisons, certaintly didnt hurt the grass at all.

    Bookmark   August 18, 2004 at 10:34PM
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The new Over 'n Out has worked for me, and i still have toads, tree frogs, and lizards, hummingbirds galore. I did not use it in my veggie beds, and won't. just broadcast it it in my play area. Have not seen any ants in over a year. Still get those pesky snakes showing up, skeeters, dragonflies (beautiful), it seems not to harm the ones I love.

    Bookmark   August 29, 2004 at 2:54AM
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Hi coloredthumb. I use several different products to control ants, depending on what kind of ants you have. The first step is to ID the ants!


    Bookmark   October 23, 2004 at 11:26PM
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glenfawnmary(8 NacogdochesTX)

Identify the ants first because this won't work on ants that don't want a protein food source.I found this info when searching for something to use where I grow food items. A lot of things..even natural..are for lawns or pastures....not food areas. Texas A & M University has a lot of information about everything!
Texas A & M Two-Step FIRE ANT Control

#1 Apply a fresh broadcast bait with the active ingredient spinosad while
ants are foraging. Consider Safer Brand Fire Ant Bait and Green Light Fire
Ant Control with Conserve.
#2 Treat mounds around foundation and in high traffic areas with D-Limonene
(orange oil). Commercial organic treatments include Safer Brand Fire Ant
Mound Drench and Garden-Ville Anti-Fuego Soil Conditioner.

Howard GarrettÂs [Dr.Dirt] Two-Step Ant Control
#1 Use beneficial nematodes for treatment of the larger area. There are
thousands of different species of nematodes. The nematode for fire ant
control is sold under the name ANTidote from Gulf Coast Biolotic Technology
(1-800-524-1958). It attacks the fire ants at the larval stage. It is very
effective and can last for years.
#2 Use a mound treatment that consists of compost tea, molasses, and orange
oil. You can buy concentrates of this. Look for Garden-Ville's Auntie Fuego
Soil Conditioner, or you can buy Garden-Ville's Garrett Juice and add the
orange oil to it. You can also make your own by making compost tea and
adding orange oil and molasses to your homemade tea. To this tea, add 4-6
ounces of orange oil and 4 teaspoons of molasses, per gallon, to make your
own mound control juice.

Fire ants can be controlled with organics. First of all to help the soil and
run the fire ants out of your yard you can use Liquid molasses or spread dry
molasses over your yard. Fire ants hate molasses and will move there mounds
over night. After this first step, you can use two ounces of orange oil to
one gallon of water and treat all the mounds you come across. It way take
more than one treatment to get rid of the little suckers. You can also buy
some already mixed-up fire ant killers at most feed store's and organic
nursery's in our area, Gardenville makes a wonderful one.
The good thing to all of the above is, it will not hurt anything in your
yard or lake

Here is a link that might be useful: Natural remedies for lots of things

    Bookmark   October 25, 2004 at 1:21PM
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NEW...........ANT CONTROL Google below

Here is a link that might be useful: ANT CONTROL Google Group

    Bookmark   January 15, 2005 at 12:21AM
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ruthieg__tx(z8 TX)

I live in the country and we are currently building a home on 5 acres. Fire ants are just something that we are probably going to have to learn to live with but I do appreciate all of the info you all are providing...I have enough ants around that I can certainly try different methods...I will say though that from what I have seen they just leave the nest and often come back to it later..ugh I plan to garden so hope I don't get eaten alive...

Our daughter visited us recently for the first time and she was bitten "stung" on the hand twice...she was reacting to the sting and talking about being stung by a bee...I truly didn't have the heart to tell her that the culprit she was so franticly dodging was an ant...

    Bookmark   January 16, 2005 at 8:48AM
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Woodsy(Z6 W PA)

we don't have fire ants here..but living in a wooded area, we do have LOTS of ant colonies.
If they do not come in the house, I let them be. But, I can sure understand if they become a nuisance.
Since we live in the woods, ants are vital to the reproduction of some woodland plants..such as trillium and other spring plants...the ants take the seeds underground to store for food..and what they don't eat sometimes germinate..and for those delightful surprizes of "how did that get here?" I'll let them stay!
Good luck

    Bookmark   January 27, 2005 at 9:24PM
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kendal(8 PNW)

You'll never fully get rid of ants, they always come back. The best you can hope for is to force them to nest some where else. I found out the hard way the more you fight them, the more plentiful they become lol. Are they eating your plants up? In the corner of my garden I have a big nest of black and red ants they are about an 1/2 an inch big, and always climbing up and down one of my conifers. I'm not sure what they are doing, but the tree does not seem to be harmed, so I leave them alone.


    Bookmark   January 28, 2005 at 9:20AM
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west_texas_peg(8a West Cen TX)

I used human urine on a bed of red ants recently. Worked great! As soon as the urine hit them they started dying and have not seen any sign that they moved to a new location.

DH thought I was nuts when I asked if he would provide this for the garden. I provided the liquid detergent bottle.

    Bookmark   April 14, 2005 at 11:36AM
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I improved my page showing: TOXICITIES OF SOME COMMONLY USED PESTICIDES COMPARED TO A FEW HOUSEHOLD CHEMICALS. You can view it by clicking on the link below.

John Warner, entomologist
University of Florida


1 Like    Bookmark   April 30, 2005 at 7:56PM
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Rosefilly(Z8b TX)

I was skeptical of the urine treatment, but in a last ditch effort I had my DH treat 2 hills that had responded to nothing. After treating twice no more fire ants. He is still laughing about getting to go in the yard.

    Bookmark   May 8, 2005 at 1:47PM
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Often ants are attracted to urine because nitrogen is usually scarse in the enviornment and needed by ants to make proteins. So, the ants will thank you for uric acid and any other nitrogenous wastes you might give them.

    Bookmark   November 27, 2005 at 9:32AM
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Pudgy(7a TX)

I simply made a massacre of the fire ants (after they
stung me a few dozen times when I went to pick up a
pot they had made into a mound without my knowing) by
doing the following:

1. Boil a nice large pan of water
2. Pour it on top of ant pile
3. Follow up immediately with apple cider vinegar
4. Feel good about amount of death incurred?
5. No, go to step 1
6. Exit program

Pretty simple, worked great, haven't seen ants since.


    Bookmark   December 25, 2005 at 1:33PM
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I had to respond because someone mentioned using 'OVER N OUT.'
This stuff is toxic, not intended for garden use and
not approved for this purpose.
I learned the hard way. You can't or I should say, shouldn't eat the vegetables treated with OVER N OUT.
It takes one full year ( I was told, who knows what remains in the soil ) for this stuff to be gone. Yes it'll get rid of fire ants but at what cost?
My entire garden was a waste!
We live in Texas and these ants have taken over! We have tried everything to get rid of them but nothing works. They will move the mound but that's about it.

    Bookmark   March 14, 2006 at 5:21PM
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girlndocs(8 WA)

"I have a perennial rock garden and the ants are enjoying it too much. Does anyone know what to use to deter them from building nests?"

I understand why people would want to get rid of fire ants, or any other ant species that's actually aggressive. I can even understand objecting to a big mound-type ant nest in the middle of a flowerbed. But otherwise, why bother? You'll just end up doing yourself and your garden a disservice. Ants (except tropical leafcutter ants) don't damage healthy vegetation -- they're beneficial insects.

We have a fairly large population of those tiny black ants. Often I find a nest when I turn over a stone and I always feel bad because I *want* those guys in my garden.


    Bookmark   March 15, 2006 at 9:51PM
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one good solution to keeping ant populations down is to treat your soil with Sevin or Orthene(smelly!) or use disyston.
As for you folks in the south, the fire ants seem to be revving up this year. My aunt lives in MS, and is fighting them. She uses over n out, tried amdro but didn't last too long.

    Bookmark   March 23, 2006 at 10:04AM
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Kendal, I am in the PNW also and it sounds like you have carpenter ants. We had them too. They nest out in the garden and put their nursery in homes. At least that is what we were told.
For ordinary ants, I use mint plants to protect something like my rose bush from aphids and cayenne pepper to move ants from a place where I don't want them. I buy a new bottle and sprinkle the whole thing around where they are and they move farther away from the house.

    Bookmark   April 21, 2006 at 9:25PM
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grammabonnie(z5 Ohio)

I have a number of ant hills at the base of trees - conifers, fruit and deciduous trees. I've been afraid to pour boiling water over them in case I injure the trees. My husband says that the ants won't injure the trees, but I have seen a number of trees die that were home to ants. So, are the ants attracted to dying trees or do the ants kill the trees?? I need to do something about these ants because we put a lot of money into planting these trees.

    Bookmark   May 5, 2006 at 8:40PM
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After being hugely pregnant all last spring and summer, I've ventured outside this year to find huge anthills everywhere! What can I do to control this problem? It is so gross and just makes my skin crawl! They're coming out of the splits between cement panels in the driveway, surrounding the trees, and are in the flower beds. Can anybody help?


    Bookmark   May 10, 2006 at 1:15PM
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My Grandma used to use cucumber peelings. For some reason they don't like them. I would just take a walk outside in my yard while making salad and peel them right where the pesky critters hang out. I'm sure to my neighbors I looked like a nut. Seemed to work though...

    Bookmark   May 24, 2006 at 12:26AM
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Any suggestions on how to kill ants around rasberries, blueberries and strawberries? I have red ants, big black ants and I need a safe way to get rid of them before the fruit appears.

    Bookmark   May 27, 2006 at 9:09PM
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Outdoor Ant Control
Supplies: 1 to 2 gallons water
Stove or barbecue grill
Instructions: Heat water to 160 to 170 degrees. Quietly sneak up to the mounds of ants and pour the boiling water down the hole.
Note: I normally try to do this between 11am and 2 pm.

Indoor Ant Control
Supplies: 1 tbsp. boric acid
1 tbsp. mint jelly or peanut butter
1 cracker
Small cardboard box
Instructions: Mix the boric acid and mint jelly; spread mixture on a cracker. Punch pinholes in a cardboard box; place cracker inside. Place box in an area where ants cause problems, but away from children and pets.
Note: The mint jelly or peanut butter lures the ants in and the boric acid kills them.

Indoor and Outdoor Ant Control
Supplies: Diatomaceous earth
Instructions: Dust food-grade diatomaceous earth along the antÂs pathways.
Note: The white powder will cut through their exoskeleton and they will dehydrate and die.

Indoor and Outdoor Ant Control Supplies:
1 1/2 cup Cream of Wheat
Instructions: Place a dish of Cream of Wheat where the ants can access it.
Note: After they eat it, the cereal expands and the ants will explode.

Here is a link that might be useful: Getting Rid of Ants

    Bookmark   June 11, 2006 at 6:52PM
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No, ants don't explode. But the foragers may bring the wheat back to the nest to feed their larvae. The larvae will not explode either.

Hot water will kill ants, but it is a dangerous way to do it. A sweet aqueous solution of a borate is often used. It works.

Here is a link that might be useful: Borates and other stuff

    Bookmark   July 24, 2006 at 5:29PM
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trsinc(8 TX)

For fire ants:

I don't care if what I do makes the ants move as long as they are not in my yard. I tried the granular molasses this year and I have no ants. The bag cost 4.00. I used one bag in the front and one in the back. Easy to apply with a spreader... Of course, I'll have to reapply at least once a year, but I would have to do the same with poison. Don't know if one bag would have taken care of everything, I wanted every square inch to have a granule.

Also, soapy water will kill them and repel them. It will only kill the ones you actually spray. I used to have patio made from 2 x 2 concrete squares. In between the squares was sand and the ants (all kinds) just loved to build mounds in that sand. I drenched the patio with soapy water 4 times. The ants left and didn't come back. I lived there for two years.

If you use soapy water be careful of the kind you use. Some types of soap will kill your plants.

And Texas A&M has been studying fire ants for a while now. They have determined that the more bermuda grass you have = more fire ants. This is because the legless mealy bug, after it is born and still has legs, loves the roots of bermuda grass. They attach themselves to the roots and live there until they die. The mealy bug makes some sort of secretion that fire ants LOVE. In fact, once the fire ants get hooked on this stuff they can't live without it. Kind of a fire ant heroin, I guess. So, my sympathies for bermuda grass lawn owners...

    Bookmark   July 25, 2006 at 11:56AM
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An organic solution would be to buy a product called
"Diotamaceous earth." It is the crushed remains of tiny organisms. It is very sharp, and when poured around an ant mound, the ants crawl over it, and are cut to pieces. Caution should be taken while applying to not inhale it, or apply it it during a breezy day.

    Bookmark   November 9, 2007 at 2:42PM
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Here in Alabama, the only thing I've ever found to work well is Amdro. The secret is to apply it the way the instuctions tell you to. Do not sprinkle it directly on the bed! I treated 3 acres two years ago. I used to have 40 or more beds of fire ants. Beds so large they would choke down my riding mower. After I applied Amdro, I've only seen 2 beds since.

    Bookmark   November 13, 2007 at 10:42PM
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Diatomaceous earth is inorganic.

    Bookmark   June 6, 2008 at 7:21PM
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Jwarner, can you tell me the toxicity of Roundup?

Do I have to wear long pants, gloves and a mask when spraying?

Can glyphosate or other ingredients in Roundup harm humans?

How long does it stay in the soil? Does it ever break down into harmless chemicals? Can it be taken up into food plants and ingested, causing later harm?

    Bookmark   June 7, 2008 at 1:15PM
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mxbarbie(pnw BC 5)

I don't know what is in Round up, but I wouldn't use it just based on the fact it is made by Monsanto. If you don't know about the atrocities that company commits against nature and seeds you should google it.

    Bookmark   June 7, 2008 at 6:58PM
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You can read the material safety data sheets (MSDS) for Roundup products at the link below. All chemical products must have an MSDS to provide information on their dangers, even natural products. It's a good idea to read these sheets before you use any chemical product.

Here is a link that might be useful: Roundup MSDS

    Bookmark   June 10, 2008 at 9:03PM
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Hi, I was wondering if anyone could help with our ant problem.
Last summer, we decided to give our veggie patch a year to the replenish the nutrients in the soil. Unfortunately during the break it seems a colony of ants have decided to make the patch their home. Any idea what we can do to get rid of them but still be able to use the patch for tomates, carrots and herbs?

    Bookmark   June 18, 2008 at 11:07AM
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Relative to other herbicides, Roundup is not terribly toxic - still I would recommend wearing a mask and gloves when spraying it (as with all herbicides). Roundup breaks down in the soil very quickly and you will not have problems with residual, or with uptake into plants and subsequent ingestion - also because plants that absorb glyphosate tend to die....

And yes, I have a graduate degree in killing weeds and residual herbicides.

    Bookmark   June 21, 2008 at 11:13PM
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I have a more complicated issue that I don't know if you can help with. We are in the south and fireants are taking over. We have horses and goats so pretty much most of the yard is for growing vegetables or being grazed by livestock. Due to this, we can't put any chemicals down. Just recently, after a big storm, the ants moved indoors.... into my 3 year old's bed. He had 53 fire ant bies all over him, and it caused him to have a seizure. We need a method to control these things, this is not a situation where we can go on the "live and let live" thought process.

    Bookmark   June 28, 2008 at 3:05PM
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You might consider that the venom in fireant stings is made up of:

1- chemicals (natural and organic chemicals and highly toxic)
2- much much more toxic than stuff that will kill fireants
3- besides your son, fireants can also kill livestock, if you put out some fireant bait, such as Amdro or Advion, or other product... what will happen:

1- you won't poison anything except the fireants (if you use the product according to label directions)
2- you might save your son's life. Many people die each year from fireant stings! Animals die also.

Think about it.


Here is a link that might be useful: toxicity of ant stings and other fun stuff

    Bookmark   July 4, 2008 at 8:37AM
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I just recently tried this solution and ants are gone, I had fire ants In my garden. I sprinkled a mix of cinnamon,black pepper and ground coffee over my garden, not on the plants but on the soil, edges of my garden and on the ant mounds. The ants scattered and are gone moved away but they are not in my garden which is great! It worked for me might for others, Be Generous when sprinkling.

    Bookmark   July 11, 2008 at 12:23PM
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i have a list of different ways i used to kill ants, i believe that its better to understand some facts about ants first, so that whatever method you use to kill will be based upon some facts about ants. By understanding facts about ants, you will know their weakness and strength, and you will know what will work and what won't. Here are the various methods to kill ants,

Here is a link that might be useful: understand and kill ants the smart way...

    Bookmark   January 14, 2009 at 12:25PM
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Use a food processor to grind up any citrus peels and scatter in your "anty" areas. This has worked for me two non-successive years when, for unknown reasons, ants decided to set up a subdivision and dine on the ripening blueberries. The ants were clever and pierced the berries, ate the innards and then went to another berry. Amazing how the hollowed skin of the berry was usually not shriveled. These ants never bothered the red raspberries that were only a few yards away. I never took the time to determine which species of ant these were.

A handful of ground peels in a 2.5' diameter circle at the base of each bush resolved the issue. During the year, I try to keep a gallon or two of peels or processed peels in the freezer-for the ants. If you do not have freezer space, simply dry the peels as they accumulate, soak a few hours, process, etc. Sometimes, I use these peels scattered about the cole plants to reduce the cabbage moths. The citrus oils are believed to alter the coles' attractive odors.

    Bookmark   January 14, 2009 at 8:47PM
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Cornmeal does not make fireants explode but it does something to occupy them, move them, until your corn seeds can start growing. Also helps to keep them off the ears of corn until you can harvest. Yes, they do damage crops!
I sprinkle cornmeal all over the garden.

I would wage chemical war on them if they were to endanger my child's life. Best source for info is Texas A&M University.

    Bookmark   January 17, 2009 at 4:38PM
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I have been having problems in my veg garden with the ants burrowing into my zucchini plant's stems and eating them from the inside out. Half the time I dont even know they are there. I have planted 6 zucchini plants each year for the last 4 years and they have only produced 3 zucchini in those conbined years because of the ants. 3 zucchini! If anyone who grows these will know they will grow like weeds but not mine. The ants dont bother my tomato, bell peppers, or eggplant though. I have tried a lot of things with no success. Any ideas that wont poison my family in the end product?

    Bookmark   April 26, 2009 at 1:35PM
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Not sure if this is urban legend but someone said sprinkle Equal around, that the Aspartame kills them. Considering what it did to my hubby, I can believe it might poison ants. He used to be a Diet Coke addict, and then got "meniere's syndrome" with dizzyness, nausea, fluctuating hearing loss, and ringing in the ears. We're pretty sure it's the asparatame that did it not only because so many other people have had that and other problems with aspartame, but because if he accidently ingests aspartame (like he did once by taking Theraflu without reading the label) he gets an attack, pretty quickly.

He's mostly ok the rest of the time unless he eats too much salt,but even the tiniest amount of aspartame sets it off.

    Bookmark   May 15, 2009 at 9:47AM
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I use aspartame on ant hills and without exception every hill has been dead in two days. 2 packets of equal for a large hill 1 packet for small hills misting the aspartame slightly with water makes it easier for the larger sized ants to take away, this is not necessary for the smaller ants. Enjoy the carnage oh and it is my opinion that people should not eat this stuff.

    Bookmark   July 27, 2010 at 8:18PM
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Xtal(z8b Temple. TX)

I bought a bag of Diotamaceous earth to kill all the snails around here. Didn't realize it would take so little. Since I've got the entire bag left, I'll use it on the fire ants. Thanks for the suggestion. If any of ya'll lived near me, I'd have enough to kill all your mounds, too.


    Bookmark   November 11, 2010 at 9:15AM
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get a 5 gallon bucket fill slightly with water then pour liquid detergent in and mix well, finish filling with water and have fun.... (hot or cold does not matter)
note: more detergent than water is a must as you don't want to dilute your weapon, and make sure you add plenty of it :)

I have noticed that the actual bubbles on top do a better job, as they probably have something more to take oxygen away and/or the oils that keep ants from drying out.


    Bookmark   May 10, 2011 at 2:38PM
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I grew up on a ranch on a hillside, the ants were absolutely nuts, like leave your food out for more than an hour and they got it.

We finally discovered boric acid traps.

The easiest way we found was to use cocacola! Drink about half the can (or dump it out for you health nuts), refill with some boric acid, and leave out for the ants. They are extremely attracted to the sugar and can eat it for days, it really seemed to get rid of them in, but be prepared to mix some up every season.

    Bookmark   May 19, 2011 at 2:17PM
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I'm watching the ants crawl through my Safer brand diatomaceous earth to eat my Okra...

It's my very first garden, and so far out of 8 strawberry plants, 2 tomato plants, 4 okra plants and 2 eggplants... I've had 2 tomatoes. Basically making gardening a complete waste of time due to ants. I've tried Sevin... garlic powder and now this.

    Bookmark   July 4, 2011 at 1:26PM
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HELP! I am desperate to find a way to get rid of the ants in my flower beds. They are small black/dk brown ants that prefer greasy foods over sweets. (Discovered when my daughter dropped a french fry in the kitchen and didn't pick it up.)

They are in my flower beds. I have found them in two potted plants already this year (one of them a hibiscus). They were in my mailbox without dirt at one time after it had rained for a while.

Luckily, they do not bite but they are walking around my house all the time and I'm concerned they will be a bigger problem when I bring my tropical plants back in the house in the fall.

Does anyone know if these methods safe for houseplants and herbs?

    Bookmark   July 10, 2011 at 1:55PM
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I promise the syrupy theraflu works (not the mixed kind) I used
The cherry kind... Put it next to the mound , watch them go crazy for it,
I guess because it's sweet..... Then guess what? THEY DIE! Promise!

    Bookmark   July 28, 2011 at 5:56PM
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Hmm... we're having an issue with ants. Not sure where my wife got a vineagar and water mixure idea from (we put int in a spray bottle and sprayed), but it did not work. They just moved and the smell just made me have to buy vinegar and salt chips.

I will have to try some of these ideas. I must admit, I kinda want to pee on something... ants hopefully, but my aim isn't that good. Don't tell my wife, I'm heading to the garden now.

    Bookmark   March 10, 2013 at 7:54AM
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Praying Mantis?

    Bookmark   May 17, 2013 at 11:23PM
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I use a product called Hi-Yeild. There is a pamphlet on the bottle with the "recipes" for different problems. It is safe to use around fruit & vegetable bearing plants. It is even safe for large breeds of dogs & lives stock. DO NOT USE ON OR AROUND CATS, SMALL DOG BREEDS, RODENTS, ETC. When it comes to ants, it works miracles. Kills the bed by the following day. I also spray my entire yard with it to keep them away. Doing that also keeps the ticks, fleas, & other pests at bay.

    Bookmark   October 10, 2013 at 3:38PM
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xiangirl zone 4/5 Nebraska(5)

If you're serious you have to eliminate the source, not just make the ants move. That's the hard part. Finding bail they'll take back that will detonate them all. Wish I had some sage advice. I've had ants everywhere in my house. Better now, but not perfect.

    Bookmark   February 27, 2014 at 1:52PM
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I see diatomaceous earth suggested here numerous times... you should know that it is not selective. It kills beneficials just as effectively as pests. I LOVE using it indoors where I dont really want any creepy-crawlies, but my family knows that it is NOT allowed outside. Its also not great to breathe so you should wear a mask and keep kids/pets out of the area until the dust settles.

    Bookmark   May 14, 2014 at 5:11AM
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I just applied DE over my vegetable garden due to ant infestation, then wouldn't you know it, we had a sprinkle of rain. The sun is out now. Do you think the DE would regain its potency after drying in the rain? It came from the water in the first place, right?

    Bookmark   May 25, 2014 at 3:01PM
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