Ant invasion

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paradox
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Ant invasion

Post: # 52926Post paradox »

One of my raised beds has been invaded by 1000s of ants.
Are my seedlings at danger or will my veg be in any danger as it matures?

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Christopher
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ants...

Post: # 52944Post Christopher »

This year I noticed that I had a large number of ants in my herb trough, which I put down to the excellent homemade compost added to the commercial mix.

I wasn't concerned, live and let live, but I became concerned when my basil plants got mealy bugs. Let no thing come between me and my homemade pesto! I searched the web, and found that pyrtherum is the answer so I've used that twice now and no more mealy bugs.

I think you'll need to be vigilant as I think ants are agents for a variety of pests.

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the.fee.fairy
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Post: # 52946Post the.fee.fairy »

There's a post from :andy: somewhere, and he says that if you put jam down, the ants will go for it, and then they'll think that the aphids are trying to steal it and kill them. So...ants could be quite beneficial should you get an aphid problem.

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Thomzo
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Post: # 53004Post Thomzo »

I had ants in my old greenhouse and the plants did suffer. I don't know if the ants were eating the roots or just if their excavations were causing the damage.

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Post: # 53136Post the.fee.fairy »

Also, don't forget that ants do a great job or aereating the soil - and the soil in and around their nests is beautifully fine, almost sandy in texture and perfect for seedlings (evict the ants before picking it up!!).

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Thomzo
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Post: # 53147Post Thomzo »

Good point, Fee. I wonder if you could use them in the same way as worms in a wormery? I feel a need for an ant farm experiment.

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Post: # 54216Post digiveg »

The main problem I've run into with ants is that they go hand in hand with aphids. They protect them from other predators and 'milk' them for their sugary sap. So, if you have lots of ants, aphids are usually not far away. Also, red ants are acidic enough to cause some plants to have problems. The black ones don't seem to have the same effect.
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Andy Hamilton
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Post: # 54217Post Andy Hamilton »

The jam thing does work to stop the aphids, I wish I could remember who first posted it on here. I think it was originally a Bob Flowerdew tip.

I have always had ants on my plots red ones and black ones I have noticed that if you dig up their nest they pick up and move somewhere else. I tend to keep digging until they have moved somewhere I don't mind them being. They are currently building a nest around the cooch grass at the edge of the plot, result!
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the.fee.fairy
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Post: # 54255Post the.fee.fairy »

I'm sorry Andy, i have these vision of these ants muttering to themselves as they pick up their bit of earth, and stop to the other end of the plot...

Then sticking their tongues out at you as they build their swish new palace that there is no way you're going to destroy this time...

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Post: # 54290Post paradox »

So feeding the ants jam and leaving them alone my crops should be ok?


It was hard writing that whilst chucckling at fees comment :lol:

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