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Peonies and red ants

Middle of, VA(Zone 7a)

Please tell me those little buggers are trying to eat my blooms? I've never noticed them on any other plant!! I was out misting the plant leaves and buds with a "bloom booster" mixture when I noticed red ants all over my Peony. This is the Peony I threatened last year with dumpster duty if it didn't "do" something the next spring/summer...LOL Last year was year #2 since planting it...lots of leaves but only two blooms....grrrr!!! This year? What to my wandering eyes should appear...TWENTY-ONE buds at last count!!!! Yip-peee!! But these red ants?!!!!!!! Thoughts anyone?

Edgewater, MD(Zone 7a)

The ants are eating the liquid you see froming on the bud, NOT the buds themselves. No harm to the plants and I thiink it actualy helps the blooms to open better(dont quote me on that).

Middle of, VA(Zone 7a)

Oh...I hope you're right!!! Thank you!

Edgewater, MD(Zone 7a)

If you watch them youll notice they pretty much stay at the edges of the leaves on the buds. Some might be roaming around looking for more buds but you shouldnt notice any damage to the plant at al.l

Fairmont, WV(Zone 6a)

Yes ants crawl all over my peonies and I have a thriving crop every year. (Of peonies, that is.) I think there is some sort of beneficial relationship between the peony and ants, but I don't know what it is off the top of my head.

pam

Middle of, VA(Zone 7a)

Whew...I feel much better now!!

Partlow, VA(Zone 7b)

I had always heard that they help the blooms to open too. Boy, I miss the peonies from our farm. We always had them and they bloomed for my birthday every year.

Cindy

Glen Rock, PA

The ant/peony tale is an old wife's tale (my wife). The ants are either drinking nectar or farming aphids and scale, sometimes both.

Edgewater, MD(Zone 7a)

LOL Pete. The only thing Ive seen them do is drink the nextar/juice off of the buds. Thank goodness Ive never seen aphids or scale on the plants.

Middle of, VA(Zone 7a)

Well Hello Pete!!! Good to "see" you again!! I will officially consider the red ants my friends now! LOL And if the apids are what's chewing on my rose bush already...I wish they'd march their happy butts a few feet over and feast on them!! :)

Winchester, VA(Zone 6b)

I always thought ants were part of the peonie experience

Middle of, VA(Zone 7a)

Rox - LOL Guess I know that now...eh? :)

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