How do I shift ants from young apple tree on my patio ?? I gather they are farming Aphids & I have tried washing off with hose pipe but without success !!! Any ideas ???
Try dunking the whole thing, pot and all (assuming you can lift it) into an even larger pot filled with water. Ants don't like being wet, and I'm assuming they've made their nest in the pot with the roots in. Failing that, find out where they are nesting, shove the hosepipe in and give them a good soaking. That should evict them, may have to do it a few times before they get the message and move on.
Last year i had the same problem on my hazel nut tree/bush, then while sorting my shed out found an old tin of white greese which i then decided to put a ring of it on the base of the plant with a little paint brush, hey presto no more ants on the hazel tree/bush.
just water every day, provided you have adequate drainage they will soon move on, better still blast the aphids off with a sprayer, can be got for 2 quid or less, no chemicals and takes a few mins a day.
They've found their way into the enormous pot I have of lilies & agapanthus. I was looking for lily beetle & instead found loads of aphids, then spotted the ants.
I squished the aphids as hard as I dared as they were all over the flower buds.
I remember someone on the old BBC gardening forum suggested watering in clove oil. You can buy small bottles of it from chemists, as it's an old fashioned remedy for toothache! I think the bottles are usually about 10ml & the suggested dilution was a bottle to a full watering can.
Many thanks I will continue to try the hose pipe ( Neighbours will think I'm stupid watering in the pouring rain !!! ) Can Not drop pot in to larger pot full of water the tree sits in an half oak barrel.
When I get ants in the house I use Nippon ant killer. It's a sweet syrup with a delayed poison in it. The ants love it, they all come out to eat it, then go back to the nest and that's the last I see of them. Surely this would work just as well in a plant pot as in my house?