Lawn & Garden Protection
How to Control Termites in Your Lawn and Garden
Many subterranean termite control products are made from the same active ingredients used to control insects near agricultural crops. These materials do not negatively impact grass or landscape plants.
Termite Control in the Garden
In most states, residential pest control professionals are not licensed to provide termite treatment near gardens, lawns, landscaping, plants, ornamentals or forests. Direct application of pesticides to plants is provided by a different type of pest management professional with different materials. Labels for termiticides require these materials only be used to control termites that infest structures. In many cases, structures in the lawn can be treated, such as workshops, pet houses, playhouses and fences.
If you want to control a subterranean termite infestation with the fastest-acting products available, termiticide is the quickest, most effective method of control. Your pest control expert can recommend the most targeted application techniques, and products that have the least impact on plants. Trees infested with native and Formosan subterranean termites can be treated either by drilling and using a foam-based termiticide, or installing bait stations.
When the objective is to prevent a termite infestation or reduce a termite population in the yard with the least amount of materials possible, slow-acting methods such as bait systems or biological controls may be effective. Bait systems use small amounts of materials that are ingested directly by foraging termites from a series of bait cartridges placed around the yard. This method allows the transfer of materials to nestmates and does not require treating large areas of soil.
Biological control methods involve the introduction of insects (ants) or microscopic worms (nematodes) that prey on termites. While both ants and nematodes are natural predators for termites, they do not offer as effective prevention or control as bait or termiticide treatment systems.
There are a few plants with insecticidal properties, such as sweet basil, that may help protect your garden from termites. In addition, vegetation and mulch should be at least six inches away from your home's foundation to reduce food, shelter and moisture sources for termites. You also may consider replacing wood mulch with mulch that termites do not eat, such as compost.