When subterranean termites infest a home, their colony is not actually indoors – it will be somewhere outside, either on your property or somewhere nearby. This means that you will often see termites first infest wood in someone’s yard or garden, before they move onto the home. Knowing what signs to look for can help you stop a full-blown infestation before it even begins and destroy the termite colony outright.
Signs that there is a termite infestation in your garden
Termites are interested in cellulose, and this cellulose usually comes in the form of wood, of which there is plenty in any garden. To find out if there are termites on your property, you need to check out a few things. First, look for any trees or logs that are rotten or decaying. These will be prime targets for termites. You then want to check your firewood, fencing, and any other wooden structure you may have nearby. Finally, termites will also infest mulch. Mulch can be great for gardening, but it is also a big draw for termites, since it is usually decaying and filled with moisture.
The most obvious sign that a piece of wood is infested is the presence of mud tubes, coming out of the ground and connecting to the wood. If you have wood that is in contact with the ground, try to lift it up and look under it. You may actually see the termites, which look like small white ants, crawling around.
Dealing with termites in the garden
The first thing you should do if you keep wood in the garden is to make sure that it’s as far away from the home as possible, and that it is elevated at least six inches off the ground. This will ensure that termites have a hard time reaching it, and if they do, the odds of the termites going from the wood to the home are lowered. You can also treat the wood with termite repellents to keep it protected.
If you already have a termite infestation in the garden, your course of action will depend on its extent. An infested piece of wood can be thrown away, but a stump that has an infestation in it is much harder to remove. In the latter situation, your best bet is to get in touch with a pest control pro who will install either a chemical barrier to protect the home, or a baiting system to kill off the colony. Contact us today if you have a termite infestation in your garden and we can help you remove it.