Fire ants in containers

yaso(8a)June 3, 2013

I grow many fruits and veggies in containers in Dallas, TX. There are fire ants in several of my containers, I think each of the containers have separate ant colonies. I don't want to use any chemicals or poisons.

Any ideas to get rid of them would appreciated.

Also does the fire ants damage the plants in the containers?

This post was edited by yaso on Mon, Jun 3, 13 at 13:21

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Mustang_Ed

Well, you could always try red cedar or maybe licorice root, and mulch the topside, but if you really want to kill them, I hear this stuff works pretty damn well. I'm sure you can find some brand-name pesticides that incorporate it as the main ingredient.

EDIT: be sure to use "baits" as ants usually take the food source deep into the colony

This post was edited by Mustang_Ed on Tue, Jun 4, 13 at 13:11

    Bookmark   June 4, 2013 at 1:09PM
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yaso(8a)

thanks mustang,

will check more on the spinosad.

I agree baits seems to be the better option, Most of my potted plants are edible and I did read in another posting that instant grits works well. It seems, once consumed grits will expand and kill the ants. Will try it and update the forum.

    Bookmark   June 4, 2013 at 6:06PM
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Mustang_Ed

Have a look here first:

Here is a link that might be useful: Ants and solid food

    Bookmark   June 5, 2013 at 9:26AM
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rhizo_1 (North AL) zone 7

Grits cannot work to control ants. However, application of grits 'may' make that little group of ants move elsewhere nearby.

To answer your question about the damage to your container plants....YES! Fire ant activity can damage plants in containers as well as newly planted trees, shrubs, and other plants in the ground.

It's doubtful that each container has it's own colony, but rather branches of the same 'household'. That is, unless you are talking about containers separated by quite a distance....say, the front yard versus the back yard.

    Bookmark   June 5, 2013 at 12:20PM
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