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Ants on Pepper Plants


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#1 Ronin

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Posted 04 July 2018 - 04:42 PM

Hi, I have finally got my pepper plants in my greenhouse and now there are ants crawling over them. I believe they are carpenter ants since there is a lot of old wood near my greenhouse. Are they friends or foes?



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#2 AndyW

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Posted 04 July 2018 - 05:02 PM

My ground cherry has been slightly infested with them. From what I gather, they're good in that they help with pollination, but they also make it hard for real pollinators to do their job and they protect pests like aphids. I tried the whole water bottle with holes full of water, honey, and borax and it was completely full within two days. I'm talking it looked black. (I'm sure there was dirt too but you could make out tons of little ants in it)

#3 MulchyDreams

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Posted 04 July 2018 - 06:25 PM

Oh no! Yeah ants can be tough on the plants. I've been trying to redirect them to the plants I find infected by putting them in the trashcan. Them and Aphids seem to go together...if you see one there's always the other at least on pepper plants.

#4 solid7

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Posted 04 July 2018 - 09:40 PM

If they're carpenter ants, I don't believe they're harvesting aphids.  In fact, carpenter ants tend to feed on termites.


Dave2000 - "Problem is, you happened upon the REAL DEAL."

#5 Beerswimmer

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Posted 05 July 2018 - 12:58 PM

I have a fire ant hill starting up under one of my grow bags :confused:

 


UT ALII VIVANT!!!!

#6 scrufy

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Posted 06 July 2018 - 12:25 AM

If they're carpenter ants, I don't believe they're harvesting aphids.  In fact, carpenter ants tend to feed on termites.

Thx for this, I always just thought all ants were aphid harvesting enemies.
Im a little to urban to have carpenter ants I think, but now Im going to read up a bit more on the little buggers I do get.
Ive got a bunch on a couple of my plants right now so Im just starting to combat the enevitable aphid assault(the smll black ants I have always come with aphids).

#7 solid7

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Posted 06 July 2018 - 04:04 AM

Double check what people call Carpenter ants. Google says some Carpenter ants do harvest aphids. But they're not like any variety that I've ever seen.

Fun fact - Carpenter ants are actually quite delicious.
Dave2000 - "Problem is, you happened upon the REAL DEAL."

#8 Honey Badger

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Posted 06 July 2018 - 04:25 AM

I have couple borax traps around my peppers for ants. In my garden, they are aphid farmers and I have to control them.



#9 Ronin

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Posted 06 July 2018 - 02:21 PM

I did a check for aphids and didn't find any, but I'll be looking again.

Also if the ants are eating the aphids why would I kill the ants? Aren't they helping?



#10 DontPanic

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Posted 06 July 2018 - 02:33 PM

The ants are farming the aphids. The ants herd and protect the aphids, and the aphids secret "honeydew" for the ants to munch on.

https://www.gardenin...ds-and-ants.htm

#11 AndyW

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Posted 06 July 2018 - 04:36 PM

Honestly, I haven't seen any aphids on my plants that were (still are) covered in ants, but I'm sure they wouldn't make getting rid of the aphids any easier. I've only tolerated them because I haven't seen any aphids and they don't *seem* to get going after the fruit. While I haven't had a flower drop on that plant yet, I'd trade that in within seconds if they started keeping up aphids.

#12 scrufy

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Posted 07 July 2018 - 01:50 AM

Double check what people call Carpenter ants. Google says some Carpenter ants do harvest aphids. But they're not like any variety that I've ever seen.

Fun fact - Carpenter ants are actually quite delicious.

Eh, Ill take the experience here over google.(words to live by)
Google is ranking based on advertising so if the real info is not profitable/mrketble somehow, its buried 30 pages into a search.
As for the fun fact... I tried but they just fall through the grill.
If it dont fit on my grill, it aint going in my mouth... lol

#13 solid7

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Posted 07 July 2018 - 11:32 AM

If it dont fit on my grill, it aint going in my mouth... lol

 

What a shame.  We'll never be campmates in the apocalypse. (cause you won't survive)


Dave2000 - "Problem is, you happened upon the REAL DEAL."

#14 Edmick

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Posted 08 July 2018 - 03:20 PM

I've always had an ant problem at this house and always had an aphid problem (go figure). I did boric acid with honey, and it worked but still didn't put a large enough dent in them. I finally had an exterminator come out to spray and no more ants. And coincidentally, no aphid problems this year. I learned a valuable lesson this year. Not saying that ants are the sole cause for aphids but taking care of them will at least give your beneficial aphid eating insects a chance to keep their numbers down.

#15 Ronin

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Posted 08 July 2018 - 06:22 PM

I had a look for ants again today and there was a lot less there. On my 10 plants, I could only see about 5. How many ants would there be if they were farming aphids?



#16 jedisushi06

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Posted 08 July 2018 - 06:24 PM

Oh no! Yeah ants can be tough on the plants. I've been trying to redirect them to the plants I find infected by putting them in the trashcan. Them and Aphids seem to go together...if you see one there's always the other at least on pepper plants.

The ants farm the aphids.  Kill them with diatomaceous earth.



#17 Verdade

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Posted 11 July 2018 - 09:00 AM

I've used black pepper sprinkled around the base of my potted peppers.  You could actually see the ants racing to leave the pot.  It's worked for me, maybe give it a try.

 

While this did keep them out of my pots, I had to also use Terro liquid ant bait as well to "control the population".

-


Edited by Verdade, 11 July 2018 - 09:08 AM.


#18 solid7

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Posted 11 July 2018 - 09:59 AM

The ants farm the aphids.  Kill them with diatomaceous earth.

 

But that's only effective until your first watering.

I have a 50lb bag of the stuff, that I had to repurpose, on account of how shockingly ineffective it became once wet.  (although it was great right up to that point)


Dave2000 - "Problem is, you happened upon the REAL DEAL."




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