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Beginner Vegetables: Ants! Everywhere! How to get rid without hurting veggies??

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Forum: Beginner VegetablesReplies: 7, Views: 109
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Brookfield, WI

May 21, 2009
11:09 PM

Post #6580509

Hi All!
Out weeding the garden this evening and see that I have a big colony of ants to take care of. Don't know for sure if they are the culprit but they're in pretty close proximity to one of my sweet pepper plants that has now died (he was THRIVING two days ago). : ( I want to get rid of them before they cause any more problems for me!

Does anyone have an organic/non-hazardous remedy for getting rid of ants in my vegetable garden?

Thank you in advance!
Palm Bay, FL
(Zone 9b)

May 22, 2009
12:11 AM

Post #6580695

I just had the same problem. Looked it up and asked in the Pepper forum.
I found out that it could be aphids. The ants are attracted to the aphids ( forgot why again)
But from what I read its not the ants hurting the plant but the aphids.

My plants looked good one day bad the next.
I washed them with Insecticidal soap - then switched to Neem oil and it seems to be doing the trick.
You have to stay with it, keep spraying to get rid of them. It can take a couple of weeks .

Someone did suggest something for the ants- I'd have to go back and look at the thread to get the name


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Brookfield, WI

May 22, 2009
12:14 AM

Post #6580705

Thank you, Sylvia!
I'll take a look at the pepper column and see if I can't find out more about what takes care of the ants.
Good luck with your aphids - I'll see what takes care of ants first and if that doesn't do the trick I'll assume I'm dealing wth aphids.
Thanks again - Haley
Palm Bay, FL
(Zone 9b)

May 22, 2009
12:15 AM

Post #6580709

this is Tplants suggestion :

Use Ortho Bug Spray but make sure it is not systemic. This will kill all bugs and especially ants. It looks like an aphid problem which leaves a sweet residue that ants love plus the aphids suck the nutrients out of the leaf. Just follow directions and do move them away from your Brugs as aphids like them also but they seem to handle the situation on their own but spray them also. Peppers need more than two to four hours of sun daily so I would definetly move them. They can take the heat but you will get some sunburn on hot days like we are now having but they come right back. If you are growing in open buckets as your pictures show, feed them a quarter cup of 10-10-10 and scratch it in and water well. Apply some mulch to retain moisture and you will have all the peppers you want. Just ask aries44? (Flip) He grows peppers all year and we are in the same zones.

And here is the link to the thread :
Brookfield, WI

May 22, 2009
12:19 AM

Post #6580714

Awesome Sylvia - thank you so much!!!! I'll go and get some Ortho (of the non-systemic variety) tomorrow.
Appreciate the help!
Palm Bay, FL
(Zone 9b)

May 22, 2009
12:21 AM

Post #6580720

You got it ! Anytime



Fort Worth, TX
(Zone 8a)

May 22, 2009
5:36 PM

Post #6583497

You can try dry molasses and apply beneficial nematodes to the beds and surrounding areas for the ants.
Kerrville, TX

May 24, 2009
12:34 AM

Post #6588900

Try some GRITS. You know, the kind us southerners eat with breakfast, dinner, and supper. Sprinkle the grits around the ant beds and along their trails and wherever they may be or go. The idea is that the ants will ingest the grits, the grits will swell up inside the ants and the ants explode...sort of. :-) Get the finest ground grits you can find. Or put course grits in a mixer and let the mixer blade smash the course grits into powdery grits. Check instructions for converting regular granular sugar to powdered sugar and do the same thing to the grits. Cover the top of your mixer so you dont breathe the stuff or coat your kitchen with it.

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