GGG - Need your help please??

mk87February 27, 2009

If you have a few minutes, will you please check out the post "Container ANTS" and let me know what you think? I don't want to use anything that would be bad for the plants...plus, the plants are going to be veggies (in my new raised veggie beds). Plus, I'd like to prevent it from happening to my regular container plants this year too, if I can.

I am just thinking you may have dealt with this before and have the right answer.

Thanks, in advance! :)

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girlgroupgirl(8 ATL)

It depends what kind of ants you have. If you have sweet loving ants in there, look for the line where they walk and put a few drops of Terro liquid down. It won't last long -and neither will they!
If they are not sweet eating ants you need something else and it is a bit tougher. You could try using some diamotacious earth where you see them walking around and this will stop workers from carrying food back and eventually kill the queen, but you must be tough with it and make sure the ants are walking through the diamotacious earth every time. Alternately, if you must you can add some over and out to your container before you plant if it is not edible. I always put a piece of screen over my pot hole and then add some styrofoam in there to get the drainage well. You can throw in a TEENSY bit of the over and out in there, and also after you mulch the top you can add a bit. Over and Out has solved pretty much all of my ant problems, although, personally, I don't care if I get regular ants in my potted plants. Fire ants are a whole different ballgame. There is now an organic product which is expensive but is said to work called the Texas Two Step for fire ants.

Hopefully this helps.

    Bookmark   February 27, 2009 at 6:55PM
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mk87

I've had both. The ones in the original pots (from the nursery) were fire ants. The ones I just saw last weekend were not. The ones I STEPPED in over at the old house veggie garden were definitely, positively and unpleasantly fire ants. LOL Have you had any experience with any of the suggestions I've read about such as chili powder or cinnamon?

    Bookmark   February 28, 2009 at 6:08PM
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girlgroupgirl(8 ATL)

We have tried many organic "solutions" to fire ants. New mounds where the queen is not deep in the mound and there are no shrubs or plants around can be treated with boiling water. But the water has to get into the queen, so that is iffy.
Pots and containers we have had some luck with drenching soda water on them. Sometimes this works, sometimes not. I would imagine if the pot is inhabited by the queen it may not work and we were killing only those containers with workers in them.

I have noticed fire ants in my own garden again, but in the area between the sidewalk and the road, so I can use chemicals there (since I can not keep that organic due to exhaust and things like cigarette butts and trash)...I tread lightly with them and use the smallest quantity of over 'n out or Amdro that is effective. Getting the nests as soon as you see piling works well. Avoiding the storage it items with prefer to inhabit works well (such as straws other than pinestraw).
No method is infallible, unfortunately!

Here is a link that might be useful: Texas Two Step in Southwest Farm Press

    Bookmark   March 1, 2009 at 9:23PM
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mk87

GGG - Thanks! I will check it out and try some of these. I guess they like river pebble, because they like to build nests on that in my rock garden too. :(

    Bookmark   March 2, 2009 at 8:23AM
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