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 Post subject: Carpenter ants
PostPosted: Mon Jun 13, 2005 3:18 pm 
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Joined: Wed Dec 31, 1969 6:00 pm
Posts: 13
Location: Eustace,TX
We have an infestation of carpenter ants. We have been totally organic for 3 years. I called a pest control company and they want to spray pyrethreum and boric acid 10 feet out from the perimeter of the house. That's the only solution they have, I explained we're organic and don't want any pesticides. However we've got to get rid of the ants. Any suggestions on a more organic approach to this problem.
We live in East Texas on Cedar Creek Lake so there aren't that many pest control companies to chose from.
Thanks,
Kmooney


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 Post subject: Alternatives
PostPosted: Sat Jun 25, 2005 1:09 pm 
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Joined: Wed May 21, 2003 5:33 pm
Posts: 829
Location: Dallas,TX
Carpenter ants clean up rotting wood, not healthy wood. Being near a lake you probably have wood that is moist a lot of the time?? Is there a possibiilty that you have a leak somewhere? There is DE, orange oil spray, hot pepper spray and vinegar wash as a solution. Also a diluted application of Dr. Bronner's peppermint soap & water.

If you have a lot of moisture around the base of your home, try some plants that need a lot of water to help keep it more dry. Elephant ears are used for this often, but they spread and if they get out in the wild they wreak havoc. Check out Aquarena springs in San Marcos to see what can happen when they go wild.

Boric acid is never recommended for outdoor use as it will alter the soil chemistry and it doesn't go away. Like we always say, you can use a quick fix to solve the problem temporarily but it will recur so long as you don't solve the root problem. Good luck and let us know how it goes.
Kathe :D


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Jul 16, 2005 5:18 pm 
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Joined: Wed Dec 31, 1969 6:00 pm
Posts: 17
Location: Dallas,TX
Carpenter ants can cause a lot of damage to wood elements on any home. I've never seem them attack healthy, dry protected wood. Typically they are after wet wood. When wood is wet it usually means that it is rotting and there is a leak somewhere, pipes, the roof, a small crack or opening that water is running into. I had a very small crack in the corner of a trim board on a fascia. I saw the ants going in under the board. When I tapped at the trim board the only thing intact was the paint. I went right through it. The water had rotted out the trim about 18" in each direction and the entire length of the vertical corner trim boards.

I ripped all of this off, brushed away the ants, let the sun dry it out, replaced the wood with ACQ wood, repainted and never saw the ants again. The crack in the corner of the fascia board wasn't any thicker than a sheet of paper!

Treating for the ants is a bandaide. There must be water getting into the area where you see them causing the damage. Fix the water migration problem and the ants will move on I suspect as they did in my case.

Gary


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