Plumeria forum: Ants and more ants

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Name: Lucky
Sacramento CA (Zone 9b)
Plumerias
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luckyzl230
Oct 22, 2015 7:42 AM CST
I'm not sure why but I seem to be having a slight ant problem. Will take pics today but just wanted to know why they love my plumerias.
They seem to be common ants (not big ants or red ants but just common regular ants)They only go to where the stem is connected to the trunk. No where else. They sit there for a few minutes then walk down the trunk then I loose them in the soil, then they pop out on top ridge of the pot and scurry off. I tried to follow one but I lost it as it went under my porch in a crack. I know I do have an ant problem under my porch as they are always pushing away sand from a brick that was broken off a couple of years ago. I've estimate that each plant has about 6-10 ants on them exactly where the steam of the leaf meets the trunk.

I'm just curious if they can harm my plumerias, why are they there and what can I use to get rid of them with out poisoning my plumerias.
BTW: I read chalk keep ants from walking over it as it can leave its signature cent behind it. That sorta worked but once it rained, all that chalk down the drin Glare

Thanks for the advice
Lucky Patrick
Name: Ken Ramsey
Starkville, MS (Zone 8a)
[url=www.tropicalplantsandmore.com]
Orchids Greenhouse Vegetable Grower Ferns Region: United States of America Hummingbirder
Composter Bromeliad Master Gardener: Mississippi Cat Lover Tropicals Plumerias
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drdawg
Oct 22, 2015 8:12 AM CST
How about simply killing them, Lucky? I don't know why they would be attracted to your plumeria. I have dozens of plumeria and have never noticed any ants on them. If I did, I would put a pinch of Orthene Fire Ant killer on the top of the media. This stuff quickly kills the ants and won't harm your plants. It works in hours for me. I occasionally have to use it on my orchids and staghorn ferns that are outside.
drdawg (Ken Ramsey) - Tropical Plants & More
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If God wanted me to touch my toes, he would have put them on my knees.
Name: tarev
San Joaquin County, CA (Zone 9b)
Always count your blessings in life
Region: California Houseplants Plays in the sandbox Orchids Plant Lover: Loves 'em all! Composter
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tarev
Oct 22, 2015 10:17 AM CST
I break the ant trail outside some of my containers with cinnamon, pepper or windex. You can also use diatomaceous earth, just wear protective mask when you apply them so you do not inhale some as you apply it.
Name: Ken Ramsey
Starkville, MS (Zone 8a)
[url=www.tropicalplantsandmore.com]
Orchids Greenhouse Vegetable Grower Ferns Region: United States of America Hummingbirder
Composter Bromeliad Master Gardener: Mississippi Cat Lover Tropicals Plumerias
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drdawg
Oct 22, 2015 11:22 AM CST
Gosh, some of you folks go to so much trouble and even have to wear masks. And if you use a good bit of perlite and/or some diatomaceous earth, you would be smart to mask-up.

I don't mean to be argumentative, but it appears to me that these insects are somehow worth saving when they invade our space. I guess I just don't get it.
drdawg (Ken Ramsey) - Tropical Plants & More
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If God wanted me to touch my toes, he would have put them on my knees.
Name: tarev
San Joaquin County, CA (Zone 9b)
Always count your blessings in life
Region: California Houseplants Plays in the sandbox Orchids Plant Lover: Loves 'em all! Composter
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tarev
Oct 22, 2015 11:48 AM CST
Precisely why I use cinnamon or pepper first..just to divert the conga line of ants..it won't kill them..but will divert them away safely. Now if it gets really annoying, then they will get diatomaceous earth. Anyhow, we all have our ways to deal with the ants.
Name: Ken Ramsey
Starkville, MS (Zone 8a)
[url=www.tropicalplantsandmore.com]
Orchids Greenhouse Vegetable Grower Ferns Region: United States of America Hummingbirder
Composter Bromeliad Master Gardener: Mississippi Cat Lover Tropicals Plumerias
Image
drdawg
Oct 22, 2015 12:11 PM CST
Thumbs up
drdawg (Ken Ramsey) - Tropical Plants & More
[url=www.tropicalplantsandmore.com]www.tropicalplantsandmore.com[/url]
If God wanted me to touch my toes, he would have put them on my knees.
Name: David Laderoute
Zone 5B/6 - NW MO (Zone 5b)
Ignoring Zones altogether
Seed Starter Avid Green Pages Reviewer Garden Ideas: Level 1
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DavidLMO
Oct 22, 2015 8:38 PM CST
Grits. Sprinkle on their trail.

I don't though mess around with ants (except inside) or much anything else insect wise unless they are quite problematical.

I don't cut that much slack though with aphids, spider mites, scale, slugs. I find no redeeming value in any of those.

Ants do have an affinity for certain plants. If you grow Luffa sponge plant for example, you will have ants.
Seeking Feng Shui with my plants since 1976
Name: Lucky
Sacramento CA (Zone 9b)
Plumerias
Image
luckyzl230
Oct 23, 2015 8:11 AM CST
Thanks for the advice. There is no trail of them thought. It's like they are scouts ants or something. Only thing I could come up with is there looking for water.
There is a trail of them about 3 feet away on the bricks. They are moving from the lawn to under my patio.
What is diatomaceous earth and Orthene Fire Ant killer?
Lucky Patrick
Name: Ken Ramsey
Starkville, MS (Zone 8a)
[url=www.tropicalplantsandmore.com]
Orchids Greenhouse Vegetable Grower Ferns Region: United States of America Hummingbirder
Composter Bromeliad Master Gardener: Mississippi Cat Lover Tropicals Plumerias
Image
drdawg
Oct 23, 2015 9:21 AM CST
The diatomaceous earth is simply a fine grit, and many critters don't like crawling over it. At least I think that's what makes it work. I have never bothered with it. Too much trouble and I am a bit lazy. Whistling

Orthene Fire Ant Killer is an ant killer and is used extensively in the Southeast. We have a huge fire ant problem here. If I use it on fire ant mounds, I sprinkle a tbl. over the mound area. Used on my staghorns or potted plants with ants (usually they are the small, non-biting, black ants that we call "sugar ants"), I just sprinkle a pinch of the powder over the soil/behind the staghorn. I guess Orthene kills all ants, but not sure it does. But it does work on all ants I want to kill and does so within hours. Any big box store (e.g. Lowe's) carries this powder in their garden area.
drdawg (Ken Ramsey) - Tropical Plants & More
[url=www.tropicalplantsandmore.com]www.tropicalplantsandmore.com[/url]
If God wanted me to touch my toes, he would have put them on my knees.
Name: David Laderoute
Zone 5B/6 - NW MO (Zone 5b)
Ignoring Zones altogether
Seed Starter Avid Green Pages Reviewer Garden Ideas: Level 1
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DavidLMO
Oct 23, 2015 9:33 AM CST
Doanno about ants WRT diatomaceous earth, but some people sprinkle it around Hostas. It cuts the slugs tummies and they die.
Seeking Feng Shui with my plants since 1976
Name: tarev
San Joaquin County, CA (Zone 9b)
Always count your blessings in life
Region: California Houseplants Plays in the sandbox Orchids Plant Lover: Loves 'em all! Composter
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tarev
Oct 23, 2015 9:55 AM CST
Here is a link about diatomaceous earth: http://npic.orst.edu/factsheets/degen.html#whatis

Oftentimes, ants work in cahoots with other insects especially if they are able to source honey dew thru those other insects. So applying DE may solve another insect problem as well.

Since my collection of plants is not enormous, I can use it. So whatever methodology you use to control ants, it will depend on your time and patience. I really try to avoid strong pesticides of any sort, there are some beneficial insects that might be severely affected.
Name: David Laderoute
Zone 5B/6 - NW MO (Zone 5b)
Ignoring Zones altogether
Seed Starter Avid Green Pages Reviewer Garden Ideas: Level 1
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DavidLMO
Oct 23, 2015 7:32 PM CST
tarev said:. I really try to avoid strong pesticides of any sort, there are some beneficial insects that might be severely affected.


Me too. Only as a very last resort.

Seeking Feng Shui with my plants since 1976

jkudywoods
Jul 2, 2016 4:33 AM CST
Well luckyzl230, I think the sweetness in plumerias flower is the reason for ants getting attracted to the plumerias. Diatomaceous earth would work for destroying ants, but only for a temporary period. A few days ago I was also facing the problem with rats in my garden and inside my house, destroying to my household things, one of my friend suggested me to take help from Professional Exterminator at http://californiarodentcontrol.com/. Likewise, You can also try out contacting some Professional Ant Exterminator for some permanent solution over ant problem.
Name: Jeff
Hudson, Fla (Zone 9a)
Region: United States of America
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Moe
Jul 2, 2016 1:11 PM CST
I have heard that if you make a trail of sand around your plants they will never go over that trail...I'm not sure if it works or not and have never tried this before...But since they are in and around the base of your plants I think I would personally want them dead...I guess a good rain would also render your sand trail useless also requiring regular sand trail replenishing....Good Luck !!
Name: Carol
Santa Ana,Ca. (Zone 10b)
Sunset zone 22
Charter ATP Member Hummingbirder Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge) Orchids Region: California Plant Identifier
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ctcarol
Jul 2, 2016 6:05 PM CST
The only thing to worry about with your plumerias is that the ants may be bringing scale or mealy bugs. The ants themselves won't harm any plant, but they do "farm" other insects for the honeydew.
Name: Lucky
Sacramento CA (Zone 9b)
Plumerias
Image
luckyzl230
Jul 7, 2016 10:23 AM CST
I've just seem to deal with it. There back again this year and I've tried everything from chalk lines to sand to ant spray. I think Sacramento was built on a big ant farm.
Lucky Patrick
Name: tarev
San Joaquin County, CA (Zone 9b)
Always count your blessings in life
Region: California Houseplants Plays in the sandbox Orchids Plant Lover: Loves 'em all! Composter
Cactus and Succulents Dragonflies Hummingbirder Amaryllis Container Gardener Xeriscape
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tarev
Jul 7, 2016 11:23 AM CST
Lucky, I think they are just so thirsty, and they sense water in your Plumies. When I get frustrated with them and I want a quick kill, I spray windex on the conga line, outside the plant container of course. Thankfully so far I do not see them here yet this summer..they used to show their little digging holes in between my pavers.
Name: Carol
Santa Ana,Ca. (Zone 10b)
Sunset zone 22
Charter ATP Member Hummingbirder Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge) Orchids Region: California Plant Identifier
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ctcarol
Jul 7, 2016 11:35 AM CST
Ours started coming in the house when that heat wave hit. I think they are just trying to find somewhere cool. Hilarious!

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