My Summer Raspberry bushes are just starting to produce their flowers (mid-April) but I've noticed some ants around them. Should I be concerned? How can I control them or better still, get rid of them?
Ants may nest around the roots which might cause a problem, but ants like dry soil and raspberries fruit best if their roots are in moist soil, so I would water the raspberries - give them a good soaking; that should deal with the ants as well as making the raspberries happy.
Possum I think you should take a close peek at the raspberry tips especially underneath. The ants 'farm' black fly, greenfly, etc for the sweet sticky honeydew they poop. It is worth checking ALL new shoots on ALL plants for ants as they show where these pests are feeding.
Curled leaves and twisty stems mean the black fly, greenfly have sucked the sap and are distorting the growing tips. Blast them with a mist sprayer with a soap solution again under the leaves is where the lighters set up camp.
I pack two spray guns and shoot from the hip ( blowing the nozzle after shooting is optional)
Ha, ha ....tks marinelilium, I will give the soapy water a try. I am guessing that it would also be ok just to spray where the ants are and continue to do so when they return ?! never tried the hip action though, will keep the neighbours amused!