Managing ants on trees and shrubs
When you find numerous ants on plants, they are probably
attracted to ripening fruit or the sweet honeydew deposited
on the plants by certain sucking insects such as aphids or
What to do
- Manage honeydew-producing insects such as aphids and
soft scales on trees and shrubs near the house. Once in
trees, ants protect these pests from natural enemies, making
many pest problems worse.
- Remove trees and shrubs that consistently host ants and
are adjacent to houses. Honeydew producers provide a great
source of food for ants, and ant colonies may enlarge as
a result and frequently invade nearby structures.
- Band tree trunks with sticky substances such as Tanglefoot.
- Trim branches to keep them from touching structures or
plants so that ants are forced to climb up the trunk through
- Protect young or sensitive trees from possible injury
by wrapping the trunk with a collar of heavy paper, duct
tape, or fabric tree wrap and coating this with the sticky
- Check the sticky material every 1 to 2 weeks and stir
with a stick to prevent it from getting clogged with debris
that allows ants to cross.