You’re off and planting!!
You should have received an email from me regarding how to contact your Mentor, either Ileana or Shane. It is also a confirmation that we have the correct contact information for you. If you didn’t receive the email, please contact me with your correct email.
Another email is shortly coming, as I want to reiterate a few of the points that we brought up on Saturday, so you feel comfortable about your place at the farm. For now, here are some options for the fire ants. They were on the internet so they must be true 🙂
If you give it a try, let us know how it works or submit another solution. I’ve heard from more than one source that boiling water on the mound is the only thing that destroys them. Scroll down and take a look.
Dealing with Fire Ants:
We all have them in parts of our rows. Here are some suggestions, but feel free to look up your own home remedies. If it’s good enough you just might make your fortune marketing it. 🙂 We tried grits, it didn’t work. I think they are smarter than we give them credit. We tried the boiling water and it worked great. The boiled onion idea would probably work but that would take more prep time than I usually give for dinner preparation. 🙂
Vinegar & Lemon Juice
1/2 cup of vinegar and lemon juice mixed in a bottle and poured on fire ant hills, will kill the insects within 30 minutes. Just pour a small amount right into the opening of the hill.
Get a plant pot and place it over a fire ant hill. Take 2 cups of boiling water, with 1/3 cup of salt and pour into the plant pot that is covering the fire ant hill. Wait about 15 minutes until all the fire ants have died and move on to the next hill and repeat process
Boiled Onions: Here’s the 5 step process:
1. Boil 3 Onions in a pot of water(for one ant hill)
2. After the onions are soft and mushy, set them off the stove to cool.
3. Smash them, then put them into a jug or pitcher to dry out in the sun for a few days.
4. Add water,
5. Pour it on the pile of ants.
A big problems with the ants is mainly associated with the herding of aphids and other insects they feed on. If one is able to control the ants population, control of aphids and other insects may follow. It is best to set up barriers to control the ants. They will not cross lines of bone meal or powdered charcoal.
Search for small ant holes and squeeze lemon juice into it. Then slice up the lemon and place it in the hole or entrance and all around the entrance area.
Plants that are known to repel the ant: Pennyroyal, Peppermint, Spearmint, Tansy, Catnip (freshly picked), Smoke from Oak leaves (in a greenhouse situation). The fumes from Oak leaves are not poisonous to humans, animals, or soil bacteria. (From http://www.organicgardeninfo.com/ants.html)
A scientist evaluates the many ways gardeners try to get rid of nasty fire ants and names the most effective:
Dr. Sanford Porter, a researcher at the USDA-ARS Center for Medical, Agricultural and Veterinary Entomology in Gainesville, Florida, has studied fire ants for more than a decade. You will find Dr. Porter’s assessment of the many nontoxic methods gardeners’ try to get rid of fire ants on this website: http://www.organicgardening.com/learn-and-grow/fire-ant-control.