Hi I have red ants in my potato patch, they have eaten most of them and the potatoes are full of ridges, what can I do to clear the patch, i have dug up all potatoes,
Hello Jan 8
I have never heard of potato-eating ants. I think it's more likely that slugs are the culprit. Ants eat other, smaller insects, tiny bits of fallen rubbish like cake crumbs and stuff and they farm aphids by drinking aphid poo, known as honeydew, but a potato wouldn't hold much appeal for them.
You probably have chosen an ants' nest as the site for your potato patch and that's why there are so many of them.
The nest will probably disappear with the autumn.
Better luck next year.
Waterbutts thanks for replying,
but I do believe the ants have attacked the potatoes,
I know its weird
they have treated the potatoes (hard to describe) like a runway all over each of them and through them, and also covered in tiny white eggs? Used the same patch last couple of years didn't have them before? think I need something to get rid of them?
Well the white eggs sound like ants' eggs. I think what has happened is that either you have accidentally planted your spuds on an existing ants' nest or they have arrived after you have planted them and they have just got settled in.
It sounds as if the potatoes are not really eatable. I would be surprised if the ants survived your digging them up when you come to take up the potatoes. I'd just give the ground a good turning over, maybe several times, and they will probably go off and find somewhere else to live that's a bit quieter.
Despite what you are convinced off-ants do no eat potatoes-that is definite
It is a slug attack or some other other pest has been at them first-then the ants move in just to mop up bits-they do the same with strawberries
The eggs could be slug eggs-possibly wrong time of year- they maybe ant eggs also-depends on the shape and texture.
But they are not the villains in your potato patch in this case.
Will dig over and see what happens. Hopefully that will do the trick. Thanks.
Ants dislike wet earth - if you have ants in your veg patch regular watering will get rid of them.