Monday, 11. January 2010 23:09
Wood Mulch and Termites
At one point in time, it was said that many people feared using mulch around the house because news broke out that Formosan Termites had infested tons and tons of mulch sold at community stores such as Home Depot and Lowe’s. Apparently the mulch came from trees that had been knocked down during a hurricane in New Orleans, where Formosan Termites are incredibly populous. Distributing the “infested” mulch was not a problem because it was readily available at a cheap price in many stores, nationwide. So while New Orleans had a bad case of the Formosan Termites, it would soon be spread across the nation.
Though we cannot confirm the accuracy or authenticity of the article in which that information came from, we do know that Formosan Termites are indeed a highly destructive species that are very popular in Louisiana. Also, these termites do, in fact, infest living trees, but to say that most of the trees knocked down in New Orleans during the hurricane were infested is sort of a long stretch. Contrary to the article, we can also say that controlling the infestation caused by these termites is actually possible and increasingly successful.
So, what’s the truth? Well in fact, after the hurricanes, the Louisiana Department of Agriculture and Forestry imposed a quarantine on all wood products and wood mulch. At the time of the news break, no wood mulch was being packaged to sell. Also, there is not much to worry about because wood products and mulch used in homes are required to be fumigated for termites before they are able to be used.
Moral of the story is – make sure you can verify whether the information you are reading in your e-mails or newsletters is legitimate and factual! When illegitimate information, like the article about the Formosan Termites, leaks into mainstream news, the aftermath can be economically devastating to corporations and their workers.
So while termites are indeed attracted to mulch because of its moistness, it is also true that there are many preventative measures a person can take to ensure their mulch is termite-free!