ants?

We have quite a lot of ants in our garden. I've always thought of them as benign, and just ignored them. But, earlier this year, a basil was mysteriously cut off, right at ground level. Now, I see a collard dying, with a great activity of small black ants right at the base of the stem. It looks like they're attacking the plant.
Do ants do this? Is there a way to control them?
Thanks, George
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I found this website interesting.
http://garden.lovetoknow.com/wiki/Ants
Good luck. I find black ants a nuisance.
The Ranger
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After verifying after digging, I've found ants to be the cause of grass dying in drought areas. They are attacking the roots for water. That is, if sparingly watering such areas during a drought.
If a drought is suspect or anticipated or ongoing in your area, just stop watering the grass period. The grass will grow dormant quickly if drought tolerant. The ants will still attack the roots, but won't adequately support the colony if you stop watering period. Ants, then dig deeper, and go dormant themselves. The subject ants here are fire ants.
In your case, you can divert ants eating your garden by giving them another food supply nearby. Then, rid the colony in its entirety by many methods. Don't attempt this in the garden proper. Be smarter than the ants.
--
Dave



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George wrote:

I don't know about outside, but I've found that those ant baits with the channels for the ants to enter work great indoors. Every time I've used them the ants were gone in a day, amazing... Might be worth a shot outdoors as I see no real reason for it not to have some effect. Otherwise find the ant hill and do something nasty to it, even boiling water works.
Not a clue what damage the ants are really doing.
Jeff

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