Ask a Question forum: Ants Invading Enclosed Plant Terrarium

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Amanderp
Mar 22, 2017 12:42 AM CST
I have a fairly large glass enclosed plant terrarium that I have had for 6 years. I have needed to water in once when I moved and it needed to adjust to its new home. Over the past 2 weeks a colony of ants have moved in and even have eggs on the side of the glass. I have tried dusting with food grade diatomaceous earth but to no avail. I sprinkled cinnamon all around the terrarium but they won't move out. Any suggestions?
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Name: Anne
Summerville, SC (Zone 8a)
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Xeramtheum
Mar 22, 2017 9:19 AM CST
Hi and welcome to NGA!

Do you know how they got in? It would help to see a picture of the whole terrarium as "large" can mean many different things. Your best bet is probably a spray insecticide. If it's really large then perhaps a granular insecticide. You could also get some of those plastic ant traps with bait in them - make sure it's got fiprinil.

The DE does work on ants but it's not quick. Also if you can, remove all the eggs you see to keep the population down. If you can find the queen, removing her would help. You'll also want to plug up any holes as well.
"The Universe speaks in many languages, but only one voice. It speaks in the language of hope; It speaks in the language of trust; It speaks in the language of strength, and the language of compassion. It is the language of the heart and the language of the soul. But always, it is the same voice. It is the voice of our ancestors, speaking through us, And the voice of our inheritors, waiting to be born. It is the small, still voice that says: We are one. No matter the blood; No matter the skin; No matter the world; No matter the star; We are one. No matter the pain; No matter the darkness; No matter the loss; No matter the fear; We are one. Here, gathered together in common cause. we agree to recognize this singular truth, and this singular rule: That we must be kind to one another, because each voice enriches us and ennobles us, and each voice lost diminishes us. We are the voice of the Universe, the soul of creation, the fire that will light the way to a better future. We are one."

G'Kar
[Last edited by Xeramtheum - Mar 22, 2017 9:22 AM (+)]
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Name: Daisy I
Reno, Nv (Zone 6b)
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DaisyI
Mar 22, 2017 9:42 AM CST
Insecticidal Soap kills ants on contact.
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Name: Anne
Summerville, SC (Zone 8a)
Only dead fish go with the flow!
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Xeramtheum
Mar 22, 2017 10:25 AM CST
Daisy is right, but I don't think it's a good idea to put it in a terrarium.
"The Universe speaks in many languages, but only one voice. It speaks in the language of hope; It speaks in the language of trust; It speaks in the language of strength, and the language of compassion. It is the language of the heart and the language of the soul. But always, it is the same voice. It is the voice of our ancestors, speaking through us, And the voice of our inheritors, waiting to be born. It is the small, still voice that says: We are one. No matter the blood; No matter the skin; No matter the world; No matter the star; We are one. No matter the pain; No matter the darkness; No matter the loss; No matter the fear; We are one. Here, gathered together in common cause. we agree to recognize this singular truth, and this singular rule: That we must be kind to one another, because each voice enriches us and ennobles us, and each voice lost diminishes us. We are the voice of the Universe, the soul of creation, the fire that will light the way to a better future. We are one."

G'Kar

Amanderp
Mar 22, 2017 11:10 AM CST
My terrarium is maybe 3G. So not huge but not a tiny ball. I have 3 smaller ones on either side as well and the ants do not seem interested either of them. I live in a sandy wooded area so ants have always been a problem come spring and summer.
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Name: Anne
Summerville, SC (Zone 8a)
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Xeramtheum
Mar 22, 2017 12:26 PM CST
Very nice! considering how deep the soil is, I'd try some of those baited ant traps - something like Combat with fipronil.

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B002LGY1LA/
"The Universe speaks in many languages, but only one voice. It speaks in the language of hope; It speaks in the language of trust; It speaks in the language of strength, and the language of compassion. It is the language of the heart and the language of the soul. But always, it is the same voice. It is the voice of our ancestors, speaking through us, And the voice of our inheritors, waiting to be born. It is the small, still voice that says: We are one. No matter the blood; No matter the skin; No matter the world; No matter the star; We are one. No matter the pain; No matter the darkness; No matter the loss; No matter the fear; We are one. Here, gathered together in common cause. we agree to recognize this singular truth, and this singular rule: That we must be kind to one another, because each voice enriches us and ennobles us, and each voice lost diminishes us. We are the voice of the Universe, the soul of creation, the fire that will light the way to a better future. We are one."

G'Kar
Name: Philip Becker
Fresno California (Zone 8a)
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Philipwonel
Mar 23, 2017 9:50 AM CST
Bull crud on ant trap/bait. Your just feeding the ants.
A handfull of dry, regular corn meal, Sprinkled around, will do it.
Ants eat the corn meal. They can't digest it. AND DIE. ### Thumbs up
😎😎😎
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Name: Anne
Summerville, SC (Zone 8a)
Only dead fish go with the flow!
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Xeramtheum
Mar 23, 2017 10:19 AM CST
Corn meal not really a good idea in a closed terrarium.
"The Universe speaks in many languages, but only one voice. It speaks in the language of hope; It speaks in the language of trust; It speaks in the language of strength, and the language of compassion. It is the language of the heart and the language of the soul. But always, it is the same voice. It is the voice of our ancestors, speaking through us, And the voice of our inheritors, waiting to be born. It is the small, still voice that says: We are one. No matter the blood; No matter the skin; No matter the world; No matter the star; We are one. No matter the pain; No matter the darkness; No matter the loss; No matter the fear; We are one. Here, gathered together in common cause. we agree to recognize this singular truth, and this singular rule: That we must be kind to one another, because each voice enriches us and ennobles us, and each voice lost diminishes us. We are the voice of the Universe, the soul of creation, the fire that will light the way to a better future. We are one."

G'Kar
Name: greene
Savannah, GA (Sunset 28) (Zone 8b)
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greene
Mar 23, 2017 12:06 PM CST
Since we are tossing suggestions I have some:

Someone told me that if you sprinkle a single packet of Splenda - the one in the yellow packet - the ants will eat it, they will think it tastes terrible and they will move out. I have tried this outside on South Georgia and mounds and it does work. Later, after the ants vacate, you can scoop out the portion of the soil containing the Splenda.

If the ants come and go, travel outside the terrarium and come back, you could get some Contact paper, remove the paper backing, place it sticky side up on the counter or table, and set the terrarium on the Contact paper. Of course, you don't want the paper to stick to the glass so leave a circle of the backing paper in the center.

You could make a paste of borax (not boric acid), sugar and water and place a little dab in the terrarium. You can put the dab of the bait in something small like a bottle cap so it won't come in contact with your plants.
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Name: stone
near Macon Georgia (USA) (Zone 8a)
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stone
Mar 23, 2017 12:12 PM CST
The quickest way to get ants to leave my potted plants is to drown them out.... I place the pot in a tub of water....
If there's a way for the terrarium to drain, would be the lowest tech solution.
Name: Philip Becker
Fresno California (Zone 8a)
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Philipwonel
Mar 23, 2017 12:20 PM CST
Good one @greene Thumbs up
Thanks Lovey dubby I learned something today 😎😎😎!!! Hurray!
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Name: Baja
Baja California (Zone 11b)
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Baja_Costero
Mar 23, 2017 1:22 PM CST
Other than drowning (a fantastic solution for containers with holes in the bottom), the only way I have managed to control the ants here is using bait (Amdro). Maybe make your own tray/trap so it doesn't spill everywhere, or target their entry/exit if there's traffic.
Name: Yardenman
Maryland (Zone 7a)
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Yardenman
Mar 24, 2017 4:14 AM CST
I was about to suggest an ant trap or borox, but considering the comment from Stone to be outstanding. They can't handle water. And a some dish soap added would finish them. The plants will survive an hour in mildly soapy water. The ants won't.

Yeh, it will take some some water-changes to get the soap after (don't overdo it). A baster will help get the last of the water out .

Yeah, its a pain, but you don't want ants.
Name: Philip Becker
Fresno California (Zone 8a)
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Philipwonel
Mar 24, 2017 8:17 AM CST
I like @greene. Ideal better !!! Thumbs up
😎😎😎
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Tisha
Mar 24, 2017 8:32 AM CST
Not sure, thought I read that ants hate lavender. Any one else heard this?
If so, take your terr. outside to what ever type of shelter it needs(cool,deep shade,etc) place some lavender twig sprigs inside the container, replace the lid loosely so they can get out/leave. Keep an eye on how the plants are, will they need H2O misted, your nice jar looks quite humid. Don`t know how long the processs will take, two hours or so. Lavender oil on a cotton ball placed inside semi closed jar?
Maybe cedar shavings wrapped in cloth so they don`t spill all over.
Take the terr. OUTSIDE. Don`t try these experiments in your dwelling.
If this doesn`t work maybe I`ll tell you the one `bout the cookie and the vacume cleaner! Ant removal and fun at the same time Hilarious!
Name: Anne
Summerville, SC (Zone 8a)
Only dead fish go with the flow!
Plant and/or Seed Trader Birds Cat Lover Greenhouse Tropicals Bulbs
Seed Starter Garden Ideas: Master Level Hibiscus Hybridizer Garden Sages Butterflies
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Xeramtheum
Mar 24, 2017 10:15 AM CST
This is a 3 gallon self contained terrarium. You do NOT want to be putting anything in it that cannot be completely removed easily.
"The Universe speaks in many languages, but only one voice. It speaks in the language of hope; It speaks in the language of trust; It speaks in the language of strength, and the language of compassion. It is the language of the heart and the language of the soul. But always, it is the same voice. It is the voice of our ancestors, speaking through us, And the voice of our inheritors, waiting to be born. It is the small, still voice that says: We are one. No matter the blood; No matter the skin; No matter the world; No matter the star; We are one. No matter the pain; No matter the darkness; No matter the loss; No matter the fear; We are one. Here, gathered together in common cause. we agree to recognize this singular truth, and this singular rule: That we must be kind to one another, because each voice enriches us and ennobles us, and each voice lost diminishes us. We are the voice of the Universe, the soul of creation, the fire that will light the way to a better future. We are one."

G'Kar

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