I have a tree with bears carved in it. The Carpenter ants are eating away at the tree and wish to use an old remedy. Thought I had heard something about turpine.
Thank you in advance.
Do you mean turpentine the paint brush cleaner and solvent? If so, there is no doubt it would kill carpenter ants. In fact, it would kill any insect. Paint thinners are amongst the most toxic products still commonly available in the open market place and by far much more hazardous compared to anything we sell so yes, it can kill these ants. But there are several reasons why you shouldn’t use it.
To start with, is the tree alive? If so, the turpentine could very well kill it. Additionally, turpentine isn’t labeled for such use and therefore shouldn’t be employed in this fashion. It’s also flammable and highly volatile and it’s fumes alone could have a big impact on other plants in the area. Lastly, unless you somehow get it to penetrate through and through the tree, there is a good chance the ant colony will continue to thrive. Clearly there are many other options you can try which would remedy the problem better and none of these will pose a hazard like the use of turpentine.
The most direct would be to blow some PYGANIC DUST into their nests. This would dehydrate them all and kill them on contact as explained in our CARPENTER ANT CONTROL ARTICLE. Easy to use and fast acting, if you thoroughly dust the nest as our video’s show, you can knock it off immediately and safely.
If you don’t mind waiting, you could set out some CARPENTER ANT GEL on the tree. This will take a few days to work but once the ants start ingesting it, they’ll share it amongst all the other ants and any satellite colonies around the yard will be killed too. I also recommend using it anywhere else you see ant activity since it’s most likely other nests abound. Killing as many as possible will provide much better results in the long run.
Here are direct links to the information and products listed above:
Pyganic Dust: http://www.bugspray.com/item/pyganic_dust.html
Carpenter Ant Control Article: http://www.carpenterants.com/carpenter-ant-control
Carpenter Ant Gel: http://www.bugspray.com/catalog/products/page560.html