Need some gardening advice

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    • #323458
      David the Gnome
      • Total Posts: 2,358

      I have a small, 6 by 3 garden plot in our yard that I weeded by hand a couple weeks ago.  Now that it seems like it is finally warm enough to plant (we had frost warnings June first) I want to get it going.

      I’ve got some string beans, carots, lettuce – and may try doing some potatoes in a couple of pots.  The problem is with the garden plot – we have a lot of ants in our yard – and i really don’t want to use anything toxic on the soil to keep them away.

      Is there a certain product I should use for the bugs?  Is there some kind of natural repellent?  Also – should I add it to the soil and surrounding area prior to or after planting?

      Any advice would be appreciated

    • #323473
      • Total Posts: 799

      If you can, maybe you can think it terms of relocating it. I don’t like to see insects killed, especially since environmentally we are in trouble with the decling insect population.

      I just co-exist with them in the garden, but I don’t tolerate them in my house. They actually are kind of helpful, tipping one off to aphids. If you see ants crawling around your leaves, it’s a tip aphids are there. The ants like the sticky sweetness of the aphids.

    • #323483
      • Total Posts: 398

      when I accidentally dig up their homes. They don’t seem to harm my plants.

    • #323489
      Ohio Barbarian
      • Total Posts: 13,652

      Or spray some diluted ammonia around. They don’t like that, either.

      It is better to vote for what you want and not get it than to vote for what you don't want and get it.--Eugene Debs

      If Democrats don’t stand for the people, why should people stand for them?--Jim Hightower

    • #323492
      • Total Posts: 1,760

      Walls of cinnamon work as natural repellent with at least with some ant species. Not that I see any necessary problems with ants peacefully sharing a garden with you. If your ant colony is the kind that herds aphids, then some more complex negotiation and balancing may be required. Kindly asking ladybugs to come for a feast of aphids is the first that comes to mind.


    • #323493
      • Total Posts: 300

      Then you can make Mojitos! We have a small bed of peppermint, they’re perennial. Perhaps plant them in a ring around the ant colony.

    • #323495
      • Total Posts: 713

      This is slightly off topic but funny because you are brining up ants. This morning I went to poor my hot water into the coffee and my hands got covered with ants. We have had a real ant issue in Oregon this year and on the bright side we keep our kitchen very very clean. That said the ants had moved into the base of the coffee maker and they all scrambled out with eggs! So they had started a nest! I have no idea when as I make coffee every morning and we have seen no ants for a few weeks. Crazy boric acid does work


    • #323505
      • Total Posts: 2,469

      And thumbs down on the mint,  I have not seen that work as much of a deterrent.

      And since you are in the frozen north, you need some advice from an expert in that climate:

      If you have other questions, check his channel.

    • #323508
      So Far From Heaven
      • Total Posts: 5,525

      Use a really good tracing poison and get rid of them once and for all. You know, one of them poisons that gets on their little footsies and they take with them to the nest and then they are responsible for killing everybody.

      We aren’t gonna harm the environment killing ants. Especially for a damn little garden in yur back yard.

      I kill the shits off every year and they just keep coming back for more of the same.

    • #323580
      Cold Mountain Trail
      • Total Posts: 8,440

      depends on the kind of ant.  some responses e.g. are about sugar ants, but if you have e.g. fire ants, well, those things aren’t gonna help.

    • #323663
      • Total Posts: 670

      I farm in East TN and never attempted to kill off the at least 10 different types of black ants here. Red fire ants moved to east TN about 5 yrs ago thanks to global warming. I may get one nest of those nasty red ants a year.

      They frequently don’t make it through the cold winter. All the black ants are their competitors and enemies and keep them in check. Killing off black ants encourages the red ones to stay and settle down.

      And no grits won’t kill ants despite the old wives tale.

      That said, I don’t like them in my house and the chickens enjoy their taste if a colony of black ants is in a bad location. They too can sting but not as bad as those awful red ones.

    • #323671
      • Total Posts: 3,207
    • #323754
      B Calm
      • Total Posts: 820

      they ate every ear of sweet corn.  This year I have already live trapped seven of the bandits and released them 5.3 miles away.  Birds like eating my blueberries and strawberries.  They know how to get under the netting, what a pain!  Bumble bees building underground nests in my potato mounds, but never in my life have I ever been worried about little ants, but I guess they could do damage too.

    • #323758
      • Total Posts: 2,074

      let them be.

      If they are fire ants, find the colony, and sprinkle a handful of Amdro around the main entrance of the colony.

      The workers will feed the Amdro to the queen, and she will quickly die, and within about two days the entire colony will be exterminated.

      “A lie doesn't become truth, wrong doesn't become right, and evil doesn't become good, just because it's accepted by a majority.” ~ Booker T. Washington

      The truth is, there’s no such thing as being “anti-Fascist.” Either you are a decent human being with a conscience, or you are a fascist.
      ~ Unknown

    • #323832
      David the Gnome
      • Total Posts: 2,358

      Really didnt mean to start anticide debate!  Honestly, I am a total novice, beyond a few articles and listening to farmers over the years.  They are your standard black ants, so i will leave them be.  Also looking in to getting a starter hydroponics kit.  The way I figure it – if I can learn enough about how to grow food, that will be something always in demand.  I enjoy it, too.  Perhaps in time it will become my trade.

    • #323860
      • Total Posts: 1,548

      In that I coexist with nature. I generally plant some extra for the wild things. Some say the mints repel  insects and mice I don’t know if it works. Good luck on your news project…grow some zucchini too, yummy and easy.

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