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Location: Alexandria, Virginia

I sprayed two days ago with some organic insecticidal soap spray I bought in the organic section of the local nursery. Due to early season mishaps, I was light in my application because I wanted to see how it affected the plants. As of late yesterday, the ants were still there.

I even found a weed in another bush outside of the garden with ants on it and I completed drenched the ants with it. They seemed to be thankful for the cooling shower. Not terribly sure if it worked all that well... :?

I'm going to try either the baking soda or one of the other 'recipes', from the link that Jal posted above, that attracts them and subsequently kills them, without having to apply anything to the plants and see how that works. Due to my early season mishaps, I'd rather try something indirect first since the ants don't appear to be harvesting aphids anywhere. I did a good check yesterday and couldn't find any aphids.

Maybe if I can get out of work before the sun is setting someday soon, I'll snap some pictures....

john gault
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Location: Atlantic Beach, Fl. (USDA Hardiness Zone 9a)

cynthia_h wrote:Soap spray works via a physical/mechanical action. Immunity cannot be developed in such cases; it's like expecting the human body to develop an immunity to being splashed with acid and *not* blister/burn/hurt/other awful consequences.

It's a physical reaction, not an immunological one.

I hear you. However, I was also wondering if they can not only develop an immunity, but also develop a way to "deal with it", seeing how some insects are very adaptable. Although I got to admit I don't really know what I'm talking about :oops: since I don't really know any of the organic measures and how they affect the insect, since so far I've not really had any problems with insects -- hence no practical experience. But your point is taken, it'd be like a roach becoming immune to a foot stomping on it -- but if they survive it, I bet they are a little quicker to get out of the way :lol: .

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As of late yesterday, the ants were still there.
Soap spray only works on the insects you get it on directly. Once the spray has dried it has no effect on any insects. The problem with ants is that the colony has many thousands of ants in it. So you kill some with your spray application, you have not even put a dent in their population. You need to go after the colony and use something that will get more of their numbers. Something that they will take into the colony and kill many if not all. Try some of the things in that link.

In my garden there are a number of ant colonies. They are small ants and don't seem to bother much except the gardener. They will kill a plant that has its roots right in their bed. I haven't had any problems with aphids yet this season. Some years the aphids get bad, but they seem to be more of a problem on the trees. Sometimes the aphids get after the cole crops. The little ants that are in my garden don't seem to tend aphids, the ones that tend aphids on my trees are larger ants.

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