If you use mulch around your house be very careful about buying mulch this year. After the Hurricane in New Orleans many trees were blown over. These trees were then turned into mulch and the state is trying to get rid of tons and tons of this mulch to any stat e or company who will come and haul it away.
So it will be showing up in Home Depot and Lowes at dirt cheap prices with one huge problem; Formosan Termites will be the bonus in many of those bags.
New Orleans is one of the few areas in the country where the Formosan Termites has gotten a strong hold. Many of the trees blown down were already badly infested with those termites, but the much may also contain wood from houses that were infested as well.
Now we may have the worst case of these stores transporting a problem to all parts of the country that have not previously been infested. These termites can eat a house in no time at all and we have no good control against them, so warn your friends to avoid cheap mulch — better to buy locally-composted mulch from a source you know. Don’t be afraid to ask the source.
Alice La Pierre
City of Berkeley
Energy and Sustainable Development Office
2180 Milvia St., 2nd fl.
Berkeley, CA 94704