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General discussion regarding the techniques and methods used to successfully grow tomato plants in containers.

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Old May 25, 2017   #1
NewbieGrower
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Default Ants in my EARTHTAINER

Adding water down pipe and see lots of ants. They seem to have set up house under black barrier. Can I spray insecticidal soap on media under barrier? How to keep ants away?
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Old May 25, 2017   #2
dmforcier
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Unless you have either fire ants or leafcutters, leave them alone. They don't hurt the plant and may keep away nasty bibbits.
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Old May 25, 2017   #3
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Mississippi, I bet they are fire ants.
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Old May 25, 2017   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dmforcier View Post
Unless you have either fire ants or leafcutters, leave them alone. They don't hurt the plant and may keep away nasty bibbits.
Fortunately not Fire ants. I don't see any leaf damage. So just let them cohabitate with my mini peppers?
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Old May 25, 2017   #5
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Sure. Why not? Lots of other creepy crawlers out there too. You just don't see them.
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Old May 25, 2017   #6
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If they aren't fire ants leave them be.
I now have a smaller blacker ant running around the dont seem to bother anything.
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Old May 25, 2017   #7
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My husband grows bonsai, we have had ants that will completely excavate the soil and move in. Terro Outdoor Liquid Ant Bait works well for us. Once ants move in, they start farming aphids, best to get them out asap.

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Old May 25, 2017   #8
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No, most ants don't farm aphids. Only one species does, and it's pretty obvious when they do.

Besides, bonsai has tiny little pots that you might notice an ant hill in. Tomato pots are much larger.

Better a few ants than a bunch of pesticide in your food.
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Old May 25, 2017   #9
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Terro is boric acid. It's harmless to people. Ants are infesting my sunflowers in the greenhouse, but I still haven't put out the terro yet. I think I have too many to poison them all.
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Old May 26, 2017   #10
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You're right, not all ants farm aphids. Leaf-cutter ants farm fungus.

I'm not one to use pesticides lightly. An occasional ant is pretty much benign, but we do have the type of ants that farm aphids, if I don't stop them with Terro or sticky tape, I'd never get any of my figs, plums or currants. I'm sure that could be unique to my climate, which is hot and dry.
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Old May 28, 2017   #11
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Cold and wet climate here, ditto on ants being a pest. If they're around your containers beware the aphid horde.
All of the ant baits have boric acid as the active ingredient, but for some reason, some brands work better for specific kind of ants, and not for others.

I have a serial ant species problem in the greenhouse. Something drove out the half red/half black ones last summer, maybe the bait finally got them or the paper wasps picked them off. So now I'm seeing tiny black ones again. I think these are aphid farmers. Hope they like the bait....
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Old May 29, 2017   #12
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http://homeguides.sfgate.com/apply-d...ens-45493.html

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Old June 2, 2017   #13
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Spinosad fire ant bait. As a rule for every pint of spinosad product you use, you must drink a liter of rum.
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Old June 2, 2017   #14
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Quote:
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Spinosad fire ant bait. As a rule for every pint of spinosad product you use, you must drink a liter of rum.
Finally, someone who shares my feelings about the chore of spraying.
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Old June 2, 2017   #15
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Speaking of ants.
We have big huge red ants in Texas.
If they bite you it is like someone put a cigar out on you.
The make huge mounds and the main meal of the horned toad.
The fire ants some way or another took them out.
The other day in traffic in Austin where 7th street and Airport blvd meet on the side of the road in the strip of barren weedy soil was a very active red ant mound.

I am also seeing these little wee black ants now on my place I have never seen before.
What the devil are they and where did they come from?

I dont know what happened to the huge fire ant mound in my raised beds I hoed up.
I have not seen hide nor hair of them since.
That thing has been plaguing me for years.
Maybe the hoe Blitzkrieg did it.
Maybe by pure luck I stormed into the royal chambers and killed the queen.


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