APOLOGIES FOR THE BAD MULCH POST

I am ALWAYS the FIRST one to apologize for being mistaken or wrong. Today I discovered the whole informational thing about the Formosian Subterranian termite thanks to a trip to UT Agriculture and also the news coverage on our ABC affiliate. I apologize for posting this after Spunkie (who is a WOMAN, by the way, not a man, who used to come to this newsgroup for years long before me until she couldn't keep up with the flames and hateful remarks towards her innocent comments) sent it to me from Michigan from someone who sent it to her whom she trusted. Usually I SNOPE.com it first, and if it comes up "untrue" I copy and paste and send it to her and to my "daughter" person who also sends me these urban myths.
HOWEVER........the remark made about the trusting of our g'bment doing what is RIGHT and knowing how EFFICIENT they are about NOT doing the right thing, I take all of this "we're fumigating everything before it leaves" thing with a block of salt. The only mulch I will use, if I used it at all will be the older mulch I know is the older mulch at my local Lowes. I used to work there. they don't rotate stock. And I usually don't use mulch. If I get the urge, Squire says when all is done with the proceedures concerning his mom's house, he's BUYING me my own chipper shredder, a kick ass electrici chain saw, some compost bins, and retaining blocks and all the bags of topsoil my heart desires. I've told him to prepare for a pallet load.........LOL
but seriously, if I need mulch, I'll use the local chipper truck's mulch. they're more than willing to dump the day's grindings if I ask them.
again, I'm SORRY I posted this before I snoped it out first. a half tank of gas later from running around UT and trying to get answers I FINALLY heard a more comprehensive coverage tonight on our news. I almost felt a fool, only thing is, I posted it because I am concerned and remember the damage the long nosed Asian beetle has done so far and she hasn't gotten started yet. and SHE came into the ports on wood shavings from Beijing and three years ago had made it to Chicago..........and the fire ants that hitched a ride on the rootballs of plants that are now as close to me as Sevierville, Tennessee which is about 20 miles away.......................
I've said enough. a continuing post of spring madness and fairy doings is forthcoming before the words drain out of me thru my ears......... madgardener up on the ridge, back in Fairy Holler, overlooking English Mountain in Eastern Tennessee where the temps are going to be 26o tonight and by weekend, 74o!
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Your heart was in the right place. You responded to a potential problem that may have effected all of us. I for one appreciate your taking the action.
Dwayne

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thank you Dwayne. As it turns out, there is good reason not to completely believe what they're saying to us about the potential for contaminated mulch. But I'm keeping my mouth shut and waiting for the people who LIVE down there and are AWARE to keep us informed. I'm up here in Tennessee, and I know I won't be buying cheaply priced mulch just to be safe. Off to play in the yard.......... maddie
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madgardener wrote:

Well, here you go. I live in SW Louisiana, about 35 miles from the Texas border. More than 1.1 million trees were blown down by Rita in SE TX and SW LA. Most of those in residential areas were gathered up by FEMA contractors and ground up. The remains were then hauled off some place we're not aware of. Probably 50% of the oak and other hardwood trees in my area were infested with Formosan termites. I know for a fact that two of mine were as I saw them when we cut out and ground the stumps. It's been that way for years and we all spend lots of money trying to keep them out of our houses.
We mostly buy pine or cypress bark mulch that is taken during logging operations. The city here does compost stuff they grind up, smaller limbs, etc. and I have used that on my property but it's not harboring termites of any persuasion.
I'm not positive but have heard that the Formosan's will only live in a warm climate. Basically I wouldn't risk it as the only way to get rid of the Formosa termites that I know of is to tent your house and pump really poisonous gas into it for a few days. HTH
George
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Acording to the USDA: http://www.csrees.usda.gov/newsroom/impacts/01index/invasivepest.html
Before Katrina the Formosan subterranean termite was Louisiana's most destructive insect, causing as much as $500 million in economic losses in the state and $1 billion nationwide per year.
Acording to the LSU Ag center: http://www.agctr.lsu.edu/termites /
A quarantine was put in place banning removal of wood or cellulose material unless it is fumigated or treated for Formosan subterranean termites and is approved for movement in the Hurricane Katrina and Hurricane Rita affected parishes of Louisiana on October 3, 2005.
Mississippi had a quarantine in effect prior to the recent hurricanes on "All cellulose material that has been in contact with soil": http://www.mdac.state.ms.us/n_library/agency_info/reg_laws/pdf/reg_plantp est_rule40.pdf
It is certainly possible that some Katrina wood debris has crossed the state lines through the negligence or unscrupulousness of private individuals. Some politicians may be unscrupulous also.
The extension office in Ohio made the statement: http://extension.osu.edu/~news/story.php?id544
The exotic Formosan subterranean termite has been widely distributed via commerce. It is established in parts of Louisiana, Mississippi, Texas, Alabama, Florida, Georgia, South Carolina, North Carolina, and Tennessee. It is found in other states along the Gulf Coast that have not imposed a quarantine on the movement of wood. Hence, movement of this species is possible.
Kansas State University made the statement: http://www.oznet.k-state.edu/news/topstory.asp
In theory, Formosan termites cant survive outside the south 33.5 degrees latitude is close to their limit. The problem is, if they can get indoors where its warm and they find a source of water, they can survive anywhere that has wood, because they dont need soil, Upham said.
Many extension offices including Penn State have decided the problem is not worth mentioning.
The targets of the Internet hysteria, Lowes and Home Depot apparently have yet to publish rebuttals to these vicious rumors. The greatest danger would be in bulk mulch in areas near the disaster, not in bagged mulch from national chains.
--
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Stephen Henning wrote:

Wow! What an understatement as concerns Louisiana. We generally tell people we have the "finest politicians money can buy." A former governor, his son, and at least two former insurance commissioners are currently in the federal prison system for taking monetary rewards for favors offered.
As far as the unscupulousness of private individuals there are a number of citizens of Louisiana who have been bilked of their money by "contractores" who were hired to repair hurricane damage and the latest scam is conmen calling folks up and pretending to be from FEMA. They want your social security number, your bank name and account numbers, and your electronic funds routing number so they can "send you some government money." I may be old but I ain't stupid. <VBG>

Very good post Stephen.
George
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<snip>
You know Maddie, I have to wonder just how a termite queen < the only one that can lay eggs AFAINO > could survive after being fed through a machine the chews wood up into little pieces.
I mean she's gotta be one tough bitch.
        Bill
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Others can turn into queens when the queen dies.
--
Pardon my spam deterrent; send email to snipped-for-privacy@earthlink.net
Cheers, Steve Henning in Reading, PA USA
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Stephen Henning wrote:

You are right but as has been mentioned, Termites would not survive the heating and bagging process.
--
Bill R. (Ohio Valley, U.S.A)

Gardening Since 1969
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snipped-for-privacy@aol.com says...

And that makes them impervious to a schredding machine?
        Bill
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snipped-for-privacy@tinlc.lumbercartel.com says... :) And that makes them impervious to a schredding machine? :) :)         Bill :) :) As mentioned it is a shredding machine, not a squashing machine. A small piece of mulch is many times larger than a termite so they can go through the process unharmed.
--
Lar

Oh, if only Noah would of been a bit more wise,
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