Ants, Help!


5 year old buck +
Guys on my new orchard at my house I have 2 flemish beauty pear trees from Cummins they are good strong 4 foot whips. My problem is that ants seems to be all over the trunks, they were starting to bud out but I'm afraid the ants will harm my trees.

I have bonide but because they haven't leafed yet I haven't sprayed them and bonide isn't rated for ants, what do I do?
Don't worry about the ants.
Ok, thanks Maya, shew!
Badger, first, ants DO NOT farm aphids..! Don't know who started that on the other site, but I thought I dispelled that myth. They drink the" dew" that aphids emit. So they are a good indicator that you may have aphids. Another myth..."oh know, I have aphids"! They are not that bad for the trees unless there is a slew of them on every new leaf in the orchard. If I have aphids on less then 50% of the new leaves I don't worry at all. A better way to keep numbers down is to spray dormant oil in spring. At bud swell a 4% solution or 2% at 1/4" green. This smothers the eggs of aphids and mites...............

Sevin(XLR) is used to thin in commercial orchards at about 8-10 mm and then again if needed at between 15-20 mm. After 20 it is supposed to be less effective, but I'm not sure as I never have done it.
Last edited:

Do ants do any pollination ?
Any bugs can pollinate theoretically, but I would think they would not do that much as they are not flying from tree to tree and hairs to hold pollen like bees do
Last edited:
Oh ya, spraying does the trick but spraying dormant oil will kill two birds w/ one stone and save you thinning apples to much. As your trees get bigger, aphids will not stress trees much at all. I hate getting my sprayer ready and calibrated first thing in the spring, but dormant oil does help quite a bit...give it a try. You can also spray sevin w/ a hand sprayer and just get the effected areas and not the whole tree. They are just on the newly formed leaves on the ends of branches, so you really don't need to get the whole tree if you don't have a whole block of trees w/a big problem.
I have a granular product that I sprinkle around apple trees with an ant problem. I would NOT use this on trees close to bearing age if you are going to eat the apples or pears.

I have had ants seriously set back some of my trees. These are the kind of ants that build a big dirt mound as part of the colony. I usually see the big mounds in wetter soils,probably to get above the dampness.
That is the age group of trees that they set back.

I have seen those any mounds in areas of northern Mn. where there is little ag. Rake out the ant mound, add fertilizer, and oats/rye and you have a tiny kill plot. Maybe only 6 foot across, but it works.

One of my friends discovered this after using oats on an ant mound for bear bait. He probably had some molasses in there, also. The oats sprouted and he killed a doe over the spot with his bow.