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Ants In The Bed

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Ant infestation

Post  Donna Rawlins on 2/12/2012, 3:53 pm

Try sprinkling uncooked grits around the mound. They seem to like the grits. They eat up and swell up and poof, they're gone.
Donna Rawlins

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just got educated

Post  jponderjones on 3/28/2012, 9:54 pm

I've just started converting to sfg style of gardening. but have always had a problem with ants in my flower pots. the soil around my home is pure south alabama red clay, so even the flowers have to go in containers. Now I have some good info and ways to deal with all those pesky ants.

thanks for sharing

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Re: Ants In The Bed

Post  UnderTheBlackWalnut on 3/28/2012, 11:43 pm

Wow -

Was just commenting that the ant posts are really drawing out the newbies! Glad to have you here jponderjones! If you haven't gotten a chance to look at the book All New Square Foot Gardening (2006), you'll want to get your hands on a copy. It's the basis for most everything we do here on the forum... Smile

Keep us posted on your conversion! Smile

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Update to ANTS...

Post  marietta mike on 5/2/2012, 1:25 am

Well the garden is up and jogging. Have had a few problems (?) that i am still trying to work out.

The first is with Cucumbers. Put two nice looking plants in the ground and after just 3 days leafs were starting to turn a gray color and get brittle. Went to different places to get ideas no one had any real good idea as to what was going on.

I have put a fungus spray on the plants and removed the bad (?) dead leafs and stems. Looks better but i am still watching close.

My Tomatos have the dreaded yellow leafs. Again after planting in the garden the green began to turn to yellow. It seems to be contained to the bottom two or three stems. I have been told to water more. I thought that i was watering to much!! I was also told by a a couple of gardeners to cut off the offendingstems.

ANTS ! They are all over. BUT he birds love'um. When i first saw birds in the bed i was upset - thought they were destroying my plants. No they were eating the ANTS !!

I have three foot of cypress bark around the garden. Cypress should keep bugs out. NOT!! So i added a bug killer. Helped some. Will add ant killer soon.
marietta mike

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Re: Ants In The Bed

Post  givvmistamps on 5/3/2012, 1:22 am

Mike, are you testing the soil with your finger to see if it needs water? I was getting a bit of yellowing/curling on one of my tomatoes, and it turned out that that particular planter isn't draining properly, so it was getting too wet.

Also, do you have any ladybugs or praying mantis around? They like aphids, and some type ants "farm" aphids like we do with cows for milk. If you're not seeing aphids, the ants probably won't be hurting anything...unless they're fire ants. We have fire ants, which is why I'm going around with the Borax and sprinkling it around their hills trying to kill them all. I'm not big on using insecticides unless there's no other option because you can kill the beneficials along with your pests. Bees, ladybugs, etc, could be affected, and they won't bounce back as quickly as your pests will; you especially want the bees around to pollinate.

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Post  marietta mike on 5/3/2012, 5:08 am

Hello Michelle,

Yes i poked my finger into the MM and it seemed - Damp - i would say. It is pretty hot here in Ga now, temps are reaching high 80's. I was thinking the ground was dry for sure, but i can push my finger into the mix with no resistance.

I work part time a grocery and folks are running out of the place with miracle grow. I asked a couple of older ladies and they both said the same thing. Yellow leafs to much or not enought water. They both told me to cut off the offending yellow branches and watch my water. Everthing i read says 1 to 1 1/2 inches a week. I got a rain meter to set up and will put a sprinkler out and do it that way.

As far as the cucumber problem everyone seem stumped. The brittle crackling leafs throw them. The leaf sound like a cracker when you break off a piece.

The fungicide i put on it seems to have had so good results. I pulled the sorry looking stems and took the bad leafs off. There is new growth so i am crossing my fingers. The seeds i planted just in case have surprised me, it has only been a week and they are pushing out of the soil. They will be ready to replant if needed or not. I think i will be giving away bunches of cucumbers!!

I was getting a bit hacked at my onions but they have stated to show themselves as are the carrots. My peas and bush beans are also doing quite well. My bell peppers are there (?) They are strong stemmed but do not appear to be getting any larger. Bell or assorted hot peppers. No worries yet. My radishes are going like gang busters so far. I have put in a second planting and will do a third late next week. I have also put in a second batch of onion seed.

I am about ready to plant pumpkins and watermelons. I am trying to time the pumpkins for the fall season. Mid Sept through late Nov would be great. The watermelons can arrive when they are ready. Aug / Sept would be nice. Pretty hot then. Cold watermelon would hit the spot on hot afternoon after yard work or a BBQ.
marietta mike

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Re: Ants In The Bed

Post  givvmistamps on 5/3/2012, 2:49 pm

I know it seems counter intuitive to think that we could be over watering in the heat we're having (we're in the low 90s down here), and yet, that's what I discovered was happening to my one tomato. Shocked Tomatoes don't like getting dry, and yet they definitely don't care for wet, either, so we have to find that middle ground and stay there. I think many here would suggest that we get a moisture meter, which I still need to do. MM will offer little resistance whether moist or not, I'm finding. It certainly doesn't get clumpy and compact the way that the clay did back in NC.

Are you getting much rain up there in N GA? My MIL lives in Franklin, NC, and she said it's been dryer than normal where she is. We're in a horrible drought here, classified as the worst a drought can get.

I'm glad it's looking like your fungicide did the trick. As for the new seedlings, the heat probably caused them to sprout faster.

I'm only growing one cucumber plant, so I would feel the loss if mine died. My guys don't like cukes, or much of anything vegetable-wise really, so I'm only growing one plant of many different things so I can try to get them to try organic, flavorful veggies and hope they'll change their minds. There are more carrots and tomatoes in the garden since I know my sons will eat those, carrots fresh and tomatoes in sauces. Oh, and I have four pumpkin plants so my boys can have CT field pumpkins for Halloween. What a Face What a Face I hope to get them to try some pumpkin pie and other pumpkin dishes using the Seminoles I'm growing. If nothing else, Seminoles are supposed to store well for up to a year.

My pepper plants (one green bell and one yellow cayenne) don't seem to
get big very fast, certainly not as fast as my tomatoes, but they sure
are growing buds and I've even got a couple cayennes that are developing
nicely. My husband uses cayenne powder in chili, so we'll have our own to use this winter.

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Re: Ants In The Bed

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