The Q&A Archives: Pest Problems

Question: I bought some copper stripping to deter snails from my cutting flowers, but have found a new pest in my garden, ants. So my question is: will the copper stripping work to keep ants off of my rose bush, and if not is there another product or suggestion that you could recomend? Also are there any "bug-friendly" remedies for aphids on the roses?

Answer: The copper strips keep snail and slugs out of the garden because they generate an electric charge when the mollusks slide across the copper. This would have no effect on ants. Ants can be kept out of trees and shrubs with a trap that you make with cardboard, plastic, or foil and 'Tanglefoot'. Encircle the stem of the plant with about a four inch strip of material that you've coated with the sticky 'Tanglefoot'. Any insects crawling onto the sticky material will become hopelessly stuck. Remove and replace the traps as they become full or other ants will use the stuck ants as bridges and walk right across the bridge of ant bodies. Aphids can be sprayed off your roses with a strong stream of water from the hose. You'll need to inspect and treat your roses several times a day; aphids seem to hone in on new leaf growth!

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