Ants on your plants can be a sign of other problems
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If you find ants on your dying plants, the ants are usually not the problem and are often indicative of another problem.
If you go on a picnic, you can bet that if there is food there will be ants. In the case of plants, the ants are not attached to the plant, but to a liquid rich in sugar called honeydew. Honeydew is a sweet excretion left by stinging or sucking insects like aphids or mealybugs. When the honeydew is present, the ants call.
After a while, a black mold called sooty mold will develop on the honeydew. While sooty mold doesn’t kill your plants, it can block sunlight and inhibit the process of photosynthesis.
Working backwards, if you have ants you probably have honeydew and you will see this black sooty mold. If you have honeydew, then you have aphids or mealybugs attacking your plants, and it is the aphids or mealybugs that you need to control, not the ants. There are several controls available, ranging from mild soap and water or contact sprays to more durable systemic insecticides.
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