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Fed up of ants & mealy bugs. Please help.

I am fed up of ants and mealy bugs in my garden. 
I see long ques of ants going in and out of some of my potted plants. I dont know if they are causing any damage to my plants, but I see a lot of them.
Secondly, mealy bugs are causing a lot of trouble. I saw only one bug a couple of days ago, but when I flipped some of the leaves, it was completely white & cottony. Currently, two of my plants have mealy bugs on them. I looked up online and tried spraying mixture of lukewarm water + dish soap + neem oil. It didnt make any difference. Infact, that spray made my rose plant leaves look brownish and dead. I tried to attack them with lots of water, but in vain. 

How can I get rid of them with natural remedies? I cannot use anything toxic because I have a dog, and birds & bees visit my flowers too. Please help. 


  • pansyfacepansyface Posts: 22,293
    Here is a list of suppliers of biological controls for many pests and nuisances.

    Apophthegm -  a big word for a small thought.
    If you live in Derbyshire, as I do.
  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Posts: 86,049
    edited April 2018
    Ants will usually stay away from pots if the soil in the pots is damp ... so perhaps your pots are too dry ... or maybe the plants are pot-bound which stops the water penetrating?

    Are you sure they are mealybugs?  Could they possibly be Scale insects like these on the underside of the leaves? 

    Gardening in Central Norfolk on improved gritty moraine over chalk ... free-draining.

  • @pansyface - I will check it out. Thank you! :)

    @Dovefromabove - My pots are well drained. I dont know why those ants are always there.

    I have downloaded this picture from the internet. The bugs look like this.

  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Posts: 86,049
    The ants nest in the pots because they're drier than the surrounding soil. 

    Those are one of the many types of scale insects 
    Info about control here 

    Gardening in Central Norfolk on improved gritty moraine over chalk ... free-draining.

  • Thankyou @Dovefromabove :) 
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