How to get rid of termites in your yard?

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Old 04-07-13, 07:34 AM
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How to get rid of termites in your yard?

So, I was replacing my mailbox post this weekend and because I relocated it, I needed to fill in the hole where the old one was. I went over to our large (20ft) japanese maple and grabbed a shovel load of dirty. When I pulled the dirt up, there were many, many, many little winged beasts.

So, that sparked a question. Do termites destroy LIVING trees? You know, we had a nice dogwood (trunk size about 5") in our front yard and it has been beautiful since we bought the house 3 years ago. Then, last summer it just completely died. Also, last fall, early fall, about 1/3 of this japanese maple dropped its leaves.

Are these little *******s connected with this crime? possible?

How do I get rid of them in the yard? Is there something I can sprinkle on the soil?
 
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Old 04-07-13, 06:19 PM
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No, they don’t chew/eat live trees or plants. Carpenter ants will damage them though. Now nothing is absolute-years ago I was witness to termites eating corn plant roots during a drought but that was the only time.

Unless the termites are in the perimeter of your house there isn’t much you can do or even need to do. Termites live in the soil and are very common. We are surrounded by termites.

A couple things you could do if you so desire:

1) You could purchase and install termite bait stations into the soil around the tree and anywhere else you want. The big box stores used to sell them; haven’t checked this year though. They are expensive; using them like this, rather than around a house perimeter, it is not likely you will kill the colony but rather weaken the colony assuming they even eat it. Expensive too.

2) Purchase insecticide granules with the “active ingredient” of Imidacloprid. This active ingredient is used in termiticides. A common brand name is “Merit” but look at the active ingredient section of the label for Imidacloprid. If the mulch is thick around the tree base, rake it away, put in a layer of granules and re-cover. They won’t hurt the tree as this ingredient is used to root feed hemlocks to stop the “wooly adelgids”. You won’t eliminate the colony this way either but you could weaken it.

3) You could install wooden stakes around your house but within an 18” permieter and simply monitor them for termite activity. If they ever get that close then there are other ways to treat if needed. Hope this helps.
 
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