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ants devouring plants faster than I can plant them

ants devouring plants faster than I can plant them


Old 04-23-00, 01:08 AM
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Help with ants in the garden please!!! I've put salt in the holes, sprayed murphy's oil soap and water, sprayed dish soap and water, sprayed a water-based indoor/outdoor bug spray, sprayed murphy's oil soap straight, sprayed murphy's kitchen cleaner (lemon) and water. I've been at it over a week and I've made a dent, but come on, enough is enough! I've started landscaping and have more to go. Those intelligent pests are eating/ stripping plants almost immediately. On their second go around on a new rose bush. I'm considering using dursban on the lawn and rock gardens but hesitate only because I've begun attracting birds, the neighborhood squirrel, lizards galore, and a nesting roadrunner to the nestest watering hole in town. I'm looking for the for sure thing to rid these ants, not just encourage them to move. I've gotten them to move twice now which creates more detective work on my part. Please help!!!

Also, can you recommend anything to wipe on door and window frames/tracks for spiders - big ones and potentially dangerous ones (have bird's inside and don't want to use any sprays)?

Thank you!!!

p.s. going to try straight lemon juice tomorrow on the holes I find. Would this hurt plant leaves or roots?
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Old 04-24-00, 02:50 AM
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Ants do not normally eat plants of any description. They will herd aphids onto tender plants and harvest the honeydew produced by the aphips and will harvest rotting plant material in some cases. Ants also help aerate the soil and should not be eliminated unless they are a problem. Larger plants can be protected from ants by banding the base of the trunk(s) with tanglefoot, slick and stick or other sticky barriers. Applications of pepper, mint and/or coffee grounds makes barriers that they do not want to cross. Boric Acid, Borax and Diatemaceous earth are barriers that will kill ants if they attempt to cross. Mixing boric acid with sugar or other type of ant bait will cause the ants to carry the bait back to the nest and will kill the nest. If you want to go the chemical route, Dursban, Diazanon and Acephate will kill the ants as well. Dursban will also control spiders as will Isotox but there again, spiders are a natural insect control in the garden. Baking soda and water sprayed on the areas where spiders are a problem, pepper sprays, mint sprays even soap and water will tend to discourage spiders from an area. Lemon juice is highly acidic and using it will not directly harm plants but over time, prolonged use may lower the pH and cause the ground to be too acidic to grow desirable plants.

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