do ants harm staghorn ferns
Large bull ants have infested my staghorn. It hangs from an oak tree in the shade.
Certified GKH Gardening Expert
Generally speaking, ants by themselves aren't a serious problem. However, the presence of ants could signify a more serious insect problem such as honeydew-producing aphids, mealy bugs or scale. Ants and aphids, in particular, have a symbiotic relationship (ants protect aphids in return for honeydew) so the longer the ants reside in your fern the more chance you have of attracting aphids. I would try hosing down the staghorn fern with a strong blast of water to wash the ants out and relocate the fern to another ant-free tree.
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