Posted on Leave a comment

The golfer or the ant?

Our overall pests problems have been few. Because our mini greenhouse (as we like to call it) was set up in our garage, we have also experienced a few mold outbreaks that were detrimental to the spinach and herbal seedlings to our great dismay. But the ants have come out, as they always do, in large numbers and have been our greatest challenge.

You guessed it. When these pests and their friends showed up we took the organic route. We first did everything we could to improve the health of the plant. In this instance our plants came straight from the store and into the ground. We will not make that mistake again. Stay tuned for a more successful way to transplant. Needless to say, our plants had a severe case of shock and stress and the tomato plant on the end suffered the most.

We then rid the plants of the ants with a regimen of boiling water, white vinegar and then flooding with water from the hose. It was successful. However, we have seen them rear their heads again in a more clandestine manner. So, while these organic remedies were successful, the best remedy is to keep plants as healthy as possible. It is not always easy to see when a plant is in trouble. And when the ants get more clandestine in their attacks, sometimes you can not see it until it is too late. The best remedy for this is to occasionally give your plants a 360 degree check. In the case of garages which love mold, also check for odors.

an ant uprooting fatality (roma tomato)
Shidonna Raven Garden and Cook

Our Roma Tomato plantling seemed to be doing just fine. So, we began the transplant process. When we went to put Roma in the ground we found a swarm of ants at the bottom of Roma’s pot made out of a cardboard like material. We found that clay pots work best to discourage mold and disease in a garage like environment. The cardboard like pots were very ineffective in this. Again, we went the organic route when mold appeared. We discarded all mold infested material. Even soil. And washed the pots in a bleach and water solution, which effectively got rid of all visible mold. We are now in the process of transitioning these pots out, transplanting and moving to soil blocks, clay pots and clay trays. Stay tuned for more on soil blocks and how they help you save in more ways than one.

Since the top soil seemed in tact, we noted the ants and moved on and planted Roma in the soil. Big mistake. The next day we found Roma up rooted and a few feet from her mound. Apparently the ants kept working from underneath the plant after we transplanted Roma and moved her right out of the ground. In retrospect we would have tried our natural remedies or removing the infested soil. We also recommend checking your pots 360 degrees when you have them outside for acclimation.

We found that these organic remedies were effective, but we have to follow these ants down all the way so to speak. They are very crafty and not to be underestimated. A word of caution. The boiling water and white vinegar had an adverse effect on the leaves and plants overall. When using these methods be careful to aim only for the ants and not the plants. Aim low in this case. Also these remedies are only for ants. Each pest will have its own natural remedy.

Do you know of any other organic remedies that can be used in the organic garden? What do you do to keep your plants healthy and to come to their aid when they are sick? Try this organic remedy and tell us how it worked out in your garden. Share your comments with the community by posting them below. Share the wealth of health with your friends and family by sharing this article with 3 people today. As always you are the best part of what we do. Keep sharing!

If these articles have been helpful to you and yours, give a donation to Shidonna Raven Garden and Cook Ezine today.

white spots on the leaves from the boiling water and white vinegar organic ant remedy
Shidonna Raven Garden and Cook