Fire ants all over pepper plants!

wookiemouseSeptember 10, 2011

I need some advice on getting rid of a fire ant infestation.

I have several 4x8' raised beds (over caliche rock, pretty much - I'm in south central Texas) and we've been under extreme drought. The only place I've found fire ants this year is in my beds. :( No visible mounds - they seem to be coming up from directly under my pepper plants. They leave everything else alone except for the peppers, but it is to the point that I can't harvest a thing because of the density of the ants. I have tried Orange Guard, which will get rid of them for the rest of the day but they're back in the morning. I have tried spraying molasses as a deterrent with zero luck. I can't treat the garden perimeter with something like Amdro, as I'm on a slope and any rain we get (ha ha, fat chance) will wash it into my planting area. Any ideas on garden-safe treatments to get rid of these nasties?

Stacy

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rhizo_1 (North AL) zone 7

There are ant bait granules on the market with the active ingredient Spinosad, a biological control agent. I much prefer baits to so-called repellents, or even contact killers. Spinosad baits are labeled for use around edible plantings.

There are several brand names with Spinosad (Conserve) as the active ingredient. Greenlight makes one, for example. Become a good label reader.....look for something that is clearly labeled as a BAIT and with Spinosad (common name Conserve). It will be a granulated formulation similar to Amdro.

Be sure to read and follow all directions for best results. Fire ants can be a serious problem in times of drought.

    Bookmark   September 10, 2011 at 1:54PM
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