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Ants

Posted: Wed Jun 08, 2016 6:01 pm
by BartJY
Hi Folks,

I have ants in the garden. Are they considered a pest or should I simply ignore them? If they are a pest how do I get rid of them?

Thanks
Bart

Re: Ants

Posted: Wed Jun 08, 2016 11:28 pm
by rainbowgardener
Ants are not generally harmful to the garden. They don't eat healthy, living plants. They some times "farm" aphids - bring them and put them on plants the aphids like. It is a mutualistic relationship. Studies show chemicals on ants' feet tranquilise and subdue colonies of aphids, keeping them close by as a ready source of food. The ants protect the aphids from predators. The aphids secrete excess sugars which the ants eat. https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2 ... 212548.htm

So if you are seeing ants on or around your plants, I would check for aphids. Otherwise the ants are harmless in the garden and can be beneficial. They can kill off harmful caterpillars and their tunnels help aerate the soil. "Tunneling ants turn over as much soil as earthworms do, aerating the soil and redistributing nutrients. Ants are also part of the world recycling crew: acting as scavengers, collecting dead insects and turning them into fertilizer"
Read more: https://www.finegardening.com/ants-arent ... z49oxjjame

If you feel you must move them out of your garden, this thread gives some control methods:
ant control https://www.helpfulgardener.com/forum/vi ... ol#p378369

If you want more info, if you type ants into the search box at upper left corner, it comes up with 650 matches...

welcome to the Forum! :)

Re: Ants

Posted: Thu Jun 09, 2016 7:27 am
by BartJY
Very interesting.

Thanks
Bart