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Got Ants!?


We’ve seen and heard about lots of ants in the garden lately, which is pretty typical during our summer months. Luckily there are 2 solutions that are very effective against 2 of our most common ants:  fire ants and crazy ants!

Get Rid of Fire Ants with “Come and Get it” Bait


Did you know that our fire ants aka Red Imported Fire Ants came to the US on cargo ships from South America in the 1930s? Now they’re found in several southern states including much of Texas. Look for mounds of fluffy, freshly worked soil, especially right after a rain. Unlike other ant mounds, fire ant mounds don’t have a hole in the center – they enter and leave the mound via underground tunnels. Organic Come and Get It bait is an effective and safe weapon for fire ants that contains Spinosad as the active ingredient. No mixing and no watering – just sprinkle on and around the mounds and the foraging ants will take it into the colony as food.

Take Care of Crazy Ants with Diatomaceous Earth

You’ll know crazy ants when you see them – they’re tiny and they run around “crazy”! You’ll find them around patios and entry ways and especially under firewood or boards. Speedy crazy ants can be stopped with organic Diatomaceous Earth aka powder made from fossilized remains of diatoms. Sprinkle DE around the areas where you see crazy ants. As the ants pass through the DE, the DE dries out their exoskeletons and they die. Works great for fleas too!

Leave Red Harvester Ants Alone!

Harvester ants are less common in our area, but they’re the only native ant on this list. Look for a big flat bare patch with big red ants radiating from a hole the center! They look somewhat similar to fire ants, but quite a bit larger. Don’t poison Harvester ants because they are the main food source for the Texas Horned Lizard aka Horny Toad, which is now a threatened species. Harvester ants make up about 70% of the Horny Toad’s diet – they need to eat large numbers of the low-calorie ants, which is why the toads have a large stomach.


Reader Interactions


  1. Dawn says

    Are these ant killers safe for pets? We only get fire ants in the backyard which is where our dog likes to hang out and do his “thing “! We don’t want him to be attacked by ants and especially don’t want to have him get poisoned!

    • Jesse Jenkins says

      Hi Naomi – unfortunately, we don’t carry a product that kills leaf cutting ants. There are a couple of chemicals on the market that work: Amdro Total and Orthene 75SP. Use caution if you decide to apply these. Another route would be to use dusting sulphur, which we do carry. The ants use leaves to make a fungus for food, so if you sprinkle dusting sulphur (a fungicide) around the mound, they take it into the colony and it kills their food source. This doesn’t kill the ants, though, it just essentially moves them to a different location.

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