Help! Ants in my manure pile!

carol6ma_7ari(zones 6 & 7a)May 7, 2011

What can I do to get rid of all the ants that are in my overwintered tarp-covered pile of well-rotted horse manure? Now it's springtime and I wanted to use the manure, but I found an awful lot of lively ants in the pile. I'm worried that if I spray an insecticide into the pile, it will be bad for the veggie plants I'll be shoveling the manure on to and bad for the people who eat the veggies.

Should I leave the tarp off? Is there anything (such as vinegar, or other non-human-toxic) that gets rid of the ants but doesn't affect people long-term?

Carol

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spedigrees z4VT

I hate i Village! A pox upon them! It not only deleted the message that I attempted to post but deleted it from my saved clipboard as well! ###@@!!%% OK this time I will save it to a text document before attempting to post it again. Now to re-write from scratch:

The ants should disperse once they and the manure they are residing in are moved to your vegetable garden.

I usually pull the tarps from my manure piles in late fall, put manure on all my gardens, and leave the tarps off the unused manure for the duration of winter. The following summer I cover the pile again so that the buildup of heat will kill bacteria and render the manure safe for fertilizing plants. That is the theory at least.

Good luck with it. Personally I wouldn't worry about the ants, but if you wanted to kill them using something harmless and natural, diatomaceous earth might work.

    Bookmark   May 7, 2011 at 11:58PM
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carol6ma_7ari(zones 6 & 7a)

Thanks, spedigrees. It's been a week now since I took the tarp off the pile, and the ants have disappeared. So the sun and air did their work.

Carol

    Bookmark   May 9, 2011 at 9:10AM
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