Some less welcome insect visitors appear in numbers in our gardens as the summer goes on.
There are more ants in the world than any other creature on the planet – most of who keep appearing in my garden!
Ants can become a problem, especially if they build up in large numbers on lawn areas. Ant mounds can disfigure a lawn and high numbers of adults can make amenity use of a lawn difficult. The mounds are the entrance to their colonies which contain many different interchangeable roles for the ants – workers, soldiers, drones and Queens. Ant nests can go deep underground with many cavities for the colony to live in. This is why it is important to get the correct and quickest control method first time.
Ant mound in the garden
Some poison baits can be very persistent and leave harmful residues for other insects and wildlife, so treating effectively without damage to the local environment can be tricky.
Some garden suppliers offer nematodes for the control of ants. Whilst I am a big fan of nematodes for the control of many insect pests, I am less convinced they are effective against ants. I think the action of the pouring water mixed with nematodes had some effect to displace the ants but does not offer much of a kill rate to the ants, which will most likely return shortly afterwards.
A more effective solution with minimal impact on wildlife is the use of a natural pyrethrum bait or solution such as Neudorff Ant Killer Granules, which can either be sprinkled on ant trails or mixed in water and watered into ant mounds. The pyrethrum will kill the ants but does not persist in the soil to harm beneficial wildlife.
If you prefer to use only physical means of control, repeated disturbance of ant colonies will eventually dislodge them and make them move.
Applying ant killer granules