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Ants' nest in the base of a rosebush

FireFire Posts: 18,015
I have planted a new rose in a small bed this year and ants have made their nest and are raising aphid farms there. I have been pouring buckets of water on it all summer, to water it. I am not convinced that water disuades ants anyway as they live quite happily in my soggy compost bins and are content to make honeycombs of chambers to ventilate it as they wish. They the world's expert engineers.

I don't want have the new roots of the rose hanging in fresh air. I don't want to use insectide. Any other ideas?


  • B3B3 Posts: 26,950
    Clove oil. I haven't  seen a single ant in the porch this year since I  sprinkled it on the door mat and the whole nest has decamped well away from the house and no ant farm on my artichoke  either. Unfortunately  something else had the leaves . No ants to keep them away I  suppose. 
    See if you can protect it from the rain as its the smell they don't like and you don't want to dilute it. 
    It might work  I've not tried it outside.
    In London. Keen but lazy.
  • FireFire Posts: 18,015
    edited 11 October
    I have seen lemon juice, cinnamon and cloves recommeded so maybe I will just make an apple crumble and heel it in. :D

    I might try a trial. I will use cinammon powder and sticks for a week and see what happens (as I have them in the cupboard). Then cloves etc.

  • B3B3 Posts: 26,950
    Well I  like the smell of clove oil so that's  the one I  went for 
    In London. Keen but lazy.
  • B3B3 Posts: 26,950
    Ps clove oil smell will be stronger than the cloves
    In London. Keen but lazy.
  • FireFire Posts: 18,015
    I will try it. Thanks
  • Busy-LizzieBusy-Lizzie Posts: 23,068
    Please let us know if it works. I tried watering with no result so used ant powder in the end which did work.
    Dordogne and Norfolk. Clay in Dordogne, sandy in Norfolk.
  • Nematodes work. They don't kill the ants but cause them to move elsewhere. 
  • FireFire Posts: 18,015
    Thanks @Singing Gardener  I didn't know there was a pack for ants. I used nematodes some a few months ago on that rose plant for weevils. Good grief
  • philippasmith2philippasmith2 Posts: 3,478
    I used Clove oil years ago in a large container which the ants had set up home in.  It was @Obelixx who suggested it.  It worked in that situation but how much/how often you would need to apply in a border I don't know.  Perhaps Obelixx will see this and be able to help ?
  • ObelixxObelixx Posts: 29,818
    I've only ever used it for roses in pots but I did once find a huge ants' nest under oneofmy rhubarb plants in my last garden when I was splitting them to grow more.  i watered that whole area with essential oil of cloves - one bottle to 5 litres - and it solved the ant problem.

    It doesn't harm the ants.  They just don't like the smell and move on.
    Vendée - 20kms from Atlantic coast.
    "We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing." - George Bernard Shaw
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